Wednesday, March 3, 2010

why not? great fun for me

Wednesday morning in Lille. Dara Reimers, the American artistic category competitor, felt ill and headed back to the hotel to get some rest. I think she completed her piece yesterday, to her satisfaction. Last night I headed back into Paris, to pick up Peter Yuen, the American competitor in the viennoiserie category. When I left yesterday, Dara was just beginning to assemble her piece. Height requirements state that the piece must be six feet tall. I dropped her off this morning, at the baking centre. By the time I parked the car and got to the bakeshop, she had bumped the table, and the structure became twelve feet wide. Crashed into quite a mess. So all I saw as pictures.

Peter arrived in Paris around 6pm, last night. British Air lost two of his bags. They said they would be on the next flight. We sourced out something to eat and waited. Peter is traveling with Roger Gural. More about Roger later. The next flight turned up with one of the two bags. Charles de Gaulle airport is about two hours from Lille. By the time Peter got everything sorted out, we left the airport around 9:30pm. It was a bad situation. At that point, they both had been awake for near twenty four hours. Plan was for Roger to return to the airport in the morning. If the airlines delivered it, it would get here Thursday. Peter is only going to get one full run of practice on Thursday, as it is. We returned to our hotel just short of midnight.

Roger has a lot of baking experience here in France. Paris, Toulouse and Nice. He is currently a bread instructor at The French Culinary Institute in New york City. He was the American competitor in the Mondial du Pain, competition in Lyon. It's a different type of competition from the Coupe du Monde. Here in France, I guess worldwide, the Coupe will always be the "Grand Daddy of 'em all", as says ABC's Keith Jackson. Every trade show, in every country has a competition now. The SIPA cup in Italy, the IBA cup in Germany, and at the MOBAC show in Japan, they have one as well. None like the Coupe, not yet anyway. All others will always be compared to the Coupe, the Coupe has set the bar. Roger is also one of the three American bread competitors, preparing for the LeSaffre Cup in Las Vegas.

So Dara is resting, Roger is on his way to Paris, and Peter is busy tormenting the Taiwanese bakers. I'm in a bakeshop, in France, got an oven, a mixer, flour, water, salt and yeast. So, I'm gonna bake some baguettes. On his way out the door, Roger spewed off a formula he'd like me to mix for him, and I'll make one of my own. His is a rather wet dough, sixty eight percent water, only .4 percent yeast. He wants it just brought together, under developed and fermented for four hours, a fold after thirty minutes, one hour, two hours and three hours. I made a straight dough mix for myself, sixty five percent water, .8 percent yeast. I mixed it a little further and plan on one fold after two hours. So we'll see. Tomorrow we will re construct the formulas and see what we get. Maybe a preferment or two for tomorrow. American bakers are very intrigued by French flour. What better opportunity? I can already say, it's slightly drier than our flour, and the ash particles in the flour are more amber than ours, and their seems to be more ash.

Let ya know tomorrow what turns up, once out of the oven. Timers' goin' off. Gotta give the dough a fold.


Blogger Laminatrix said...

I love these reports from Paris . . .

March 3, 2010 at 9:28 AM  

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