Donuts Times a Million    

September 12 1998
3 feet by 3 feet
of gooey sticky dough

The task of the day:


Today I did something very interesting. I went and worked in the production bakeshop to help out. This is the bakeshop that produces all of the breads and rolls for the restaurants and special functions on campus. We ran 500 pounds of bread.

That's 10 bags of flour, 50 pounds each. That's 20 dozen baguettes, about 500 hard rolls, pullman loaves by the score, dozens and dozens of sourdough rounds. I personally loaded 8 entire racks worth of baguettes into the oven.

There were five of us there. But it's a gob of work. Start time? 5 AM. Finish time? 2 in the afternoon. Pay? None. Still, I learned gobs and gobs, and got to practice my forming and rolling of breads. I'll probably go back at least one weekend that I'm here to help out again. All in all, it was fun.

Some of the work is hard because of the quantities. Wrestling 250 pounds of lean dough out of a 3 foot wide mixer just takes strength. But forming it up into rolls take four people almost an hour. That's lots of annoying hand work.

Took lots of pictures today. Calvin with the industrial strength "dough divider." Brian running the ovens. Stacks of rolls and bread. Hopefully the pictures come out well. I'll try to get them developed and scanned if I can. This stuff really defies description. It's all so large and strange sounding.

* * *

When I got home, I was beat. Not enough sleep the night before, and physically exhausted from the day. I didn't feel bad about a four hour nap. But, now I'll be up until 3 in the morning. Oh well, it's the weekend. Sort of.

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Copyright 1998 Tom Dowdy