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Happy Holidays!

What we did in our December class, disappeared fast on the table and very much liked by the students. Thank you to Aileen Co, she gave us all a box of ham and hotdogs.
The Many Faces of Ensaimada, if you look here you can make a roll out of the ensai dough. It is the Holiday cheer and i bet everyone is cramming their brains with xmas gifts, not on what they will get but more on what they will give. Bummer. I have 8 nephews and nieces here, good thing most of them just want dinero so i am spared just a tad bit. But if you have friends and co-workers to give gifts to, now that is the problem. Nowadays, you have to be creative and if you know how to bake, that will give you an edge. Everyone can turn out a pan of brownie, cookies and cupcakes. Very easily. But specialty baked goodies such as Mamon, Chiffon Cakes, Special Ensaimadas, Panettone and many others are not quite easy to make. This December, i was surprised that no one enrolled in Cake Decorating compared to last year's November and December sessions. I think times are really hard but it's just not that, people want to save because of that doomsday prediction which i think is just totally crap from the get go. This month i met a young man who took a pastry and arts course somewhere, 14 months he say. Hmmm. So, ensaimada and cinnamon rolls are also pastry if i remember it right from a pamphlet i was given by a school in Bend, Oregon. What i am trying to say is that, he paid dearly for this course and to not learn how to make these two kinds of pastries is at the very least sad. 14 months and all about pastries, so what kind of pastries did they make that they have to spend 14 months total and not learn cinnamon rolls, ensaimadas, brioche, or any sweet yeast doughs for that matter. Kahit isa lang, even if the description of the course says pastry, out of concern sa students, i would have given them a lesson or make sure that they perfect at least one type of sweet yeast dough. I guess my maternal instincts is coming out, that's why when we were baking i always tell them to remember the feel of the dough. 3 days lang ang session, take every opportunity that you have with the dough and make every second worth and allow the dough to teach you. What he said on our 3rd day matters to me the most, "mas marami pa akong na hands on sa bread dito kesa sa pinag aralan ko". Yeah, sometimes it depends on the student. Not all will have the same appreciation for a new skill, trade or ideas in general pero the fact that he enrolled again to learn how to bake breads speaks volume. We all want to earn money, but these are people paying with their hard earned money. Money do not grow on trees, i admit i am a bit disturbed. If i could i would want to do the session in 2 weeks, intensive immersion class for the second week and introduction on the first, then practical activity for another 3rd week, then hopefully apprenticeship on the 4th week. But, that would be costly. You do not need an airconditioned room to learn how to bake, or a famous teacher, someone you see on tv or in an ad, or a nice building to get your hands on a dough. Dough lang yan, noong unang panahon, walang mixer, walang oven, walang dough roller etc., Harina, tubig, asin and yeast lang at kamay. Then pugon. Brick or clay lined, sinemento at may butas sa harap, they will put wood inside, papainitin and then, ihuhurno ang dough. Tapos. People just found a way to make money out of you. Big money. Hundreds of thousands and you still need to learn how to decorate cake outside of the course, and bake breads? bah, humbug. Kumbaga sa computer, this one is not user friendly at all if you ask me. Happy Holidays and A Prosperous New Year to all of us!!!

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