Do you have baking aspirations? Personally, I would love to have my own little café-bookstore, that sells oven-warm scones and piping hot tea (none of this cold brew mumbo jumbo, coffee is supposed hot).
If you want to perfect your baking, then make The School of Artisan Food your next port of call.
Skills, confidence, inspiration and troubleshooting advice are on offer for aspiring professional bakers from the artisan baking masterclass at The School of Artisan Food. Devised and delivered by The School’s own head of baking Wayne Caddy, the four-week ‘baking bootcamp’ is a complete immersion into the life of a would-be professional baker and has helped launch numerous careers of aspiring artisan bakers.
Based on tranquil surroundings of the historic Welbeck Estate, this specialist course ‘Professional Bread Baking Skills with Wayne Caddy’ runs only once a year, with limited places still available for the course starting on 30 July 2018. Students master a range of traditional and contemporary bread baking techniques as well as key skills such as planning production and analysing faults and what to do about them.
Wayne, who is one of only a handful of people across the world to join the Elite Club of Artisanal Bakery after being presented with the prestigious Elite de la Boulangerie Internationale award and the first UK baker to be selected as a jury member on The Master De La Boulangerie competition, said: “I’ve developed this course for really keen home bakers up to professional bakers – we’ve had people coming from Australia, Brazil, Belgium, Poland, all across the world. The biggest reward for me is watching someone transform from where they were to get to where they need to be and start being great artisans. We’ve so many people out there who are now head bakers or who have their own businesses.”
Emma de Giacometti was already an experienced home baker with short stints at a local bakery when she enrolled on the course to acquire the skills and confidence to launch her own home-based micro-bakery.
She could bake one good loaf on a daily basis for her family but was looking for help to get to making around 30 loaves per bake of a good enough quality to sell. She found the emphasis on practical work and bulk bread making was an excellent fit.
She said: “The course gives budding bakers a realistic insight into what life as a professional baker actually is like. Leave your romantic idea of a how you are going to change the world one loaf at a time. This is a practical course and with its nine hour shift, it’s not for the faint-hearted. You will finish the course with the techniques you need for your next baking step, a thick booklet of recipes, good friends and the feeling of a summer well spent.”
The invaluable practical nature of the course was also praised by another former student who has gone on to become an award-winning baker himself.
Ian Hill said: “Wayne taught us to be ‘thinking bakers’ equipping us with the skills to respond and adapt to circumstances and not just blindly follow recipes and procedures. This is really key in baking good bread as no two batches of flour are the same and you need to understand how to respond to a changing environment and variable raw ingredients. I came away from the course with the confidence to do this.”
The course also gave Ian the push he needed to leave his corporate office job and launch his own micro-bakery business Riddle-Me-Rye.
“I’m receiving more orders than I could ever have imagined. It is always immensely rewarding to receive good feedback on my breads and that is down to the quality of Wayne’s teaching.”
At the recent 2018 Scottish Bread Championships, Ian won a gold medal, three silver medals and a bronze for his breads and was Reserve Champion (2nd place) overall.
He added: “I give a huge amount of credit for this achievement to Wayne and The School of Artisan Food for excellence in teaching and world class facilities. I will always treasure the time I spent on the Welbeck Estate and look forward to going back for many of the shorter courses in the future. As a class many of us keep in touch, swapping tips, recipes and ideas. I met some lovely people on the course who have become great friends that I speak to every week. I wholeheartedly recommend this course to anyone contemplating a career move into bread baking.”
The Professional Bread Baking Skills with Wayne Caddy runs from 30 July to 23 August 2018, priced at £2595. Course places can be secured with a 25 percent deposit. Local self-catered accommodation is available.
For more information, please visit www.schoolofartisanfood.org/pbb now.
More about The School of Artisan Food:
It is a not-for-profit organisation and registered charity dedicated to teaching skills in all aspects of sustainable and artisan food production.
The School offers a unique environment for people of all skill levels to expand their knowledge through a wide range of short courses in baking and patisserie, cheesemaking, butchery and charcuterie, ice cream and chocolate making, preserves, charcuterie and brewing.
It also offers an accredited 6-month Advanced Diploma in Artisan Baking and professional business courses for new food start-ups and existing enterprises.
As a charity, the School works with voluntary organisations, schools and colleges, and community groups to provide opportunities to inspire and teach artisan food production skills.
The School of Artisan Food is delighted to have been honoured with the Clarissa Dickson Wright Award at the Countryside Alliance ‘Rural Oscars’ for its outstanding contribution to food and education.
Shortlisted as the UK’s Best Cookery School as chosen by readers for the Great British Food Awards, voting is open until 24 August 2018. Click here to vote now.