Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Sorry, again!

The haze of the afternoon sun has been leaving me in a somewhat exhausted daze and I have not wanted to turn on my laptop and add heat to my un-air conditioned apartment.

Speaking of stiflingly hot, we had to be removed from our classroom for the first two days of this week and were thrown back down the road to the basement of Brown College, which is where the program originated. Now, I've heard lots of horror stories of the beginning years; lack of classroom space, finding colleges to support it, Baking and Pastry classes that met from 10pm until 2am. Lots of interesting stories of how the program found it's feet in the early years.

Monday and Tuesday were two of the most uncomfortable days in my life thus far. The facilities at the schools new building FAR exceed those found at Brown. For one thing it was hot and sticky. Theoretically there was air conditioning, but it never really kicked in. Which wouldn't be so bad except for the four ovens in the corner. For another thing, there was a depleted number in just about everything. In our classroom, all tools and ingredients are at your fingertips. We were spoiled. We didn't want to share sheet pans, we didn't want to share oven space, or bowls, or counter space, or rooms. It was a good test of how we work together and (a side from one individual) we did perfectly fine. I was very impressed. I hated every minute of it, but impressed nonetheless.

What came out of those two days of heated discomfort and inconvenience was a bread plaque. It was a test of creativity and skill. It was a project of art and sculpture. It was playdoh. The base was made from weavers dough, a relatively simple (not at all delectable) bread that was solid ground for building our ideas. The actual forms that sat on the base were made from salt dough, exactly the same recipe for home made playdoh-flour, water, & salt. Technically food, but I wouldn't suggest it.

For anyone that has met me more than once, it will be no surprise that I picked a monkey for my design. (Actually, it was modeled after an orangutan-and ape-but I didn't add enough red to the dough, so it turned out looking like the generic plush monkey you find in stores.) All in all, I was pretty happy with the way it turned out. The trust over the top is the name of a center in Iowa that houses some of the most famous apes in Primatology. I haven't gotten a chance to actually visit it, but I hear fabulous things.
Anyway. The plaque it a dedication to the apes and my obsession with them that will never go way. (Even if I do become a world famous pastry chef)


Maria said...

I love it! At the very least you should send a link to the Great Ape Trust or something.

Country Living said...

Oh, yes! What a good idea. And no apologies, necessary--it is your blog after all!