Difference between revisions of "2020.7.30 Harvest Day 1 - By The Plot Breadmaking Class"

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Latest revision as of 09:57, 2 August 2020

2020.07.30 Harvest Day 1 - By the Plot - Breadmaking Class
As August 1st draws closer, Harvest celebrations start to take place. Starting with a Breadmaking Class at By the Plot
IC Date July 30, 2020
IC Time Afternoon/Evening
Players Caressa, Skye, Beckett Jacobs, Blythe, Elizabeth, Shaserra, Hayden
Location By The Plot > Education Center - Prospect, CA
Spheres All
<---======##========[ Upcoming City of Hope MUSH Events ]=========##======--->
NUM  ST        Genre     Title                       Date                 Sgnps
1321 Caressa   All       Harvest Day 1               Thu Jul 30 16:00 CDT  2

By The Plot - Education Center

At first glance this large room resembles a very casual bistro setup. Small round tables dot the front of the room. It is a clear shot back to the restaurant style kitchen which is separated from the eating area by a tall counter. A chalkboard sign on the wall lists the times the room is reserved for classes or gatherings. When the chef isn't in there are glass front fridges with bottles of water, juice or pop for free, though there is a box inside that asks for donations so they can continue to provide cold drinks.

The class seems to have been going for a while as the whole education center smell of bread from rising to baking. Chef Reuben is helping a small group around the kitchen island by giving instruction on how to knead their dough properly. Caressa is wandering between groups helping as she can with glances to a timer on the ovens.

Skye, for his own part, isn't exactly a cook. He's wearing a borrowed apron and he has flour dusting the apron, his clothes, his hair, and his face. He looks a bit frustrated as he punches the dough, trying to get it to shape properly.

Caressa stands behind Skye a few moments watching him try to shape the dough. "Easy. It is a living creature you know?" She smiles. "Want some help?"

Skye starts, not having seen Caressa behind him. "What? Well, it's not a very good pet. It's not listening to me." He sighs and nods his head. "Um.. sure."

Caressa chuckles. "With practice it will. Punching down like that will take what air the yeast as building in side it. We want to keep most of that for nice fluffy bread." She wiggles in beside Skye.

The class seems to have been going for a while as the whole education center smell of bread from rising to baking. Chef Reuben is helping a small group around the kitchen island by giving instruction on how to knead their dough properly. Caressa is wandering between groups helping as she can with glances to a timer on the ovens... Though she is now helping Skye.

Skye nods his head. "Yeah.. but it doesn't stretch like it's supposed to. It is supposed to, right?" He says, glancing over his shoulder a Caressa, offering her a faint smile.

Caressa nods. "It is supposed to, yes. But you need to knead it to build up the glutton. Not punch it to death. Here..like this." She puts his hands on the dough and moves them to show him the right way to knead and how much pressure to put into it. "When it stretches, then we put it to rise." She explains.

Skye blinks. "The.. glutton? What's that? Does it like.. eat like a monster?" He says, starting as her hands come over it. He nods his head, moving a bit slower as she helps him knead the bread. "Um.. okay.. so what.. just sit around and watch it grow? Like moss? Elizabeth walks into the education center looking around for where the class is.

Caressa shakes her head. "You'll knead another loaf that the mixing team will have ready. In a while we'll rotate around so everyone knows the whole process." She chuckles. "gluten. It is the protein strands in the wheat that give a bread its structure and elasticity. It is what people with celiac disease can't tolerate." She looks up to Skye. "Knead it till it is smooth, then put it back in the bowl to rise." She then steps away from Skye and waves to the newcomer, "Hello! Here for breadmaking?"

Skye smirks. "Isn't that cheating? I mean... if I had a kitchen and wanted to cook, I'd have to sit and watch the paint dry, wouldn't I?" He shakes his head and nods, sighing dramatically and kneading it, a lot better than he was doing earlier.

Elizabeth looks down at a sheet of paper and back up to Caressa, "Yes I am. Am I late? I thought it hadn't started yet. So how are we going to make this dough?" She rubs her hands together and then looks around at the bread. "Ohh. This kind of bread... Of course I knew that."

Caressa looks back and laughs at Skye, "Well, you could do other things while waiting for it to rise. You know the saying, a watched pot never boils? Well, a watched loaf never rises. It like privacy to do its yeasty dance with the other yeasties."

She moves over to Elizabeth, "Never too late! We have many loaves to make!" She tilts her head at the mention of other bread but doesn't mention it. "Have you made bread before?" She starts ushering Elizabeth towards the 'mixing' station.

Skye rolls his eyes. "Yeah... why do I feel you were about to say 'study'" HE sticks his tongue out at Caressa and then looks over at Elizabeth. He smirks and lifts a flour dusted hand to wave at her. "Hey there."

Caressa shrugs to Skye, "I wasn't, but that's a good idea! Or shop amazon, or play video games, watch a movie. Lots of things."

Elizabeth smiles and waves back. Letting go a sigh before taking off her jacket and rolling up her sleeve. "So where do I start?"

Skye grins at Caressa. "Uh-huh." He says, busying himself with kneading the bread. He glances at Elizabeth. "I don't think I've caught your name though I've seen you around. I'm Skye."

Caressa motions Skye over to the mixing station. "Here we have our recipe." She motions to a laminated piece of paper tacked on the wall above the station. "So we start with the water. non-chlorinated is best" She motions to a dispenser that filters the water. "We have already heated it for you. But you want to make sure the temp is warm but not scalding. You should be able to feel the heat on your wrist but it should be comfortable."

The class has been going on for a while. But it seems there is still plenty of ingredients and room for more to join in on the festivities that is harvest bread making.

Blythe took the lead in this dense urban jungle. Blythe following behind him. Pale eyes directed themselves away from the countenances of those gathered to the rune scratched board. The letters made sense. According themselves to the arbitrary calving of the day according to the reservations of man. His attention was quickly stolen by the lesson in progress. Astute eyes keenly attempting to make sense of the dispenser afore him. The narrowing of eyelids was enough to betray he made rudimentary sense of what was going on. But the depth of the furrow in his brow -- that was what made clear his confusion. -Why?- They spake. Why was this necessary? Can't you just... drink it?

Beckett entered from the main shop area, sticking his head in. He overheard something about hot water as he stepped in through the door. "Germinating seeds?" He asks aloud before getting a better look. "Oh no, making bread," he corrects himself after a clearer look at what's going on. "What sort of bread are we making?" He asks Caressa, clapping a hand on Blythe's shoulder.

Blythe took the jolting smack sportingly. But not with the acceptance you'd expect. The man looked awkward at the jostle, his eyes fixating again on the project at hand without any input as to what exactly was going on. The mystery being as dense as a Christy novel to the man who was twice the tourist on this occasion.

Caressa would have gotten Elizabeth and Skye started on mixing up new batches of dough. He attention gathered by the question from a familiar voice. "Harvest wheat. honey sweetened." She waves Beckett over and wanders over to greet them. "Hello Beckett!" Her silver-violet eyes moving over to Blythe and taking in the young man's appearance in one smooth sweep. As one use to studying people. "Whose your friend?" is asked of Beckett, then back to Blythe, "I'll give you a few extra loaves to take home when you leave."

Blythe upon seeing it was hands-on work rolled up his sleeves.

Elizabeth moves over to where the ingredients are and begins to grab some of them. She turns to Skye, "Oh Hello, I'm Elizabeth. It is a real pleasure to meet you Skye. Maybe we should get to know each other better sometime?" She spots Beckett Jacobs and Blythe as they walk in and waves to them as well, "Oh hey there! Nice to see you Mr. Jacobs. Tell Blythe I am happy to see him as well!"

Skye smiles at Elizabeth as he hands the kneaded dough off. He leans against the counter, taking a break. "It's nice to meet you. You go to the University too, right? Yes, that would be nice." He says, glancing over at the new students. He cocks his head, nodding politely.

"His name is Blythe," Beckett said for his quieter friend. "His English still isn't too good. We're..." He trails off letting Blythe slip out from under his fingertips and allowing him to step up first. Beckett blinks as he looks to Elizabeth, seeming confused. "Why do I need to tell him? He's right here." He looks to Skye, brows creasing as he tried to remember where he'd seen that youthful face before. "I'm working on post-grad at the moment."

Caressa smiles to both the men, "Well, I'm glad you've come. Hello Blythe, pleasure to meet you. I'm Doctor Caressa Perlman." She takes it in stride, "Come on over to the mixing table. We're just getting started on a new batch." She turns to make her way back over to the table where Elizabeth and Skye are working.

Elizabeth raises her eyebrows, "Oh I didn't know Blythe was familiar with this. I know even less." She follows the directions and tries to roughly pour a container filled with the ingredients. She stirs it for a moment, but when it doesn't seem like there's enough liquid for the flour, she reaches for it seeming to calculate adding more into the batch.

Skye seems content to watch Elizabeth and the others settle in and start on their doughs. He leans back and grins a bit. "Yeah.. you guys seem better at this than me."

Shaserra comes in hesitantly, looking very unsure if she has the right place and or time. Ahh people making bread, right place at least. She smiles some and comes fully inside. "Hiya, sorry if I am late.

It seems the education center has been divided up into several stations. Chef Reuben is at the kitchen island help people with their bread shaping and getting the loaves into the ovens. Caressa is currently help at the mixing station helping a small group mix up new batches of dough.

Caressa looks over to Elizabeth's bowl, "Only add a tablespoon at a time. Just till it comes together. Otherwise you end up in an endless look of adding liquid and flour and without enough yeast...well, it is a horrible cycle, it isn't fun." She then looks to Skye's bowl. "Oh, you're doing great!" The over to the apology of being tardy, "Nonsense! WE have plenty more loaves to bake! Come on in, grab and bowl and we'll get to mixing!"

Skye smiles at Caressa, nodding his thanks. "So what do I do now?" he asks, pushing away from the counter. "Where's the dough that's already risen? So I don't have to watch the paint dry... or study." He winks at Caressa, glancing at the newcomers curiously.

Beckett tilts his head at Blythe's expression of practical chemistry. "We could fry some loafs, too," he says with a slightly teasing chuckle. He crosses the room to watch what Blythe was going to do with the dough. "So what else do you planned for the Harvest Fest, Dr. Perlman?" It was as 'fest' wasn't it? Eh, close enough.

Whether or not Blythe truly internalized that knowledge or simply regurgitated it from absorbed media was truly a mystery as he kept his hands hitherto, prepared, but remarkably and reluctantly clean. Not wanting to touch the amorphous gloop which had been left to rise afore his entrance. A smile was directed towards Beckett. A cross between 'help me' and 'go on, I know you wanna show off.' "If it can't be grilled. I won't touch it. That - that's a recipe for disaster." A cautionary step was to distance the man from the dough. Despite somehow already accumulating a fine film of flour over his person, the dough remained untouched. And he sought to absolve himself of all responsibility of its handling.

Shaserra smiles at the enthusiasm of being called over and mirrors it, a bounce to her step as she works out where to wash up really quick. Not bothering with an apron, she gathers up a bowl, and some flower. Having caught something about adding water slowly or a bad cycle happens, she goes easy on the first pour. Beginning to mix is a good time to look around, giving nods and smiles.

Caressa laughs to Skye and motions over to Chef Reuben. "You can do help Chef Reuben shape the loaves and put them into the ovens." Then she turns back to Beckett, "Tomorrow is learning to preserve fruit. In particular pears. Some will be put to dehydrate and most canned. I suppose you could make pear preserves too, but I've never seen that on the markets. Then Saturday is the Feast Day." Her silver-violet eyes slide back to Blythe, "Well, if you want to come out to the feasting spot early, I could use some help at the spit roasting the pig." Then she continues adding to any willing to listen, "Centuries ago, the first harvest of the year was a big celebration. They made special bread, enjoyed the first fruits of the season. What they couldn't eat they preserved. That is what we start celebrating today. A time for friends and family. To thank whatever deity you wish to follow for the abundance of the harvest. For nourishing us. After all, you get from the earth what you give to her. Treat it well, and you will never hunger." She pauses to gather her dough after kneading and put it back into the bowl to rise.

Hayden smells the bread. "Nice."

Blythe salivated at the prospect of cooking a hog. There wasn't any containing that sort of enthusiasm. Wide eyes. Spit drenched tongue, and a consequentially squelchy "Oh yeah." A too broad smile. As if a reptile had been taught to copy joyfulness. Tooth-and-gum. "I'll be glad to help." Came the oath. Word is bond. And he await only the date with proverbial bright eyes and bushy tail.

Elizabeth adds a bit too much liquid at first but then follows Caressa's advice and begins to slowly add in a bit more flour and yeast until and mix it until it properly resembles dough. She then picks it up daintily before taking a deep sigh and then thoroughly kneading the bread. After some time the dough begins to come together. She slowly rolls it out into long snake like rolls and then braids it together before placing it on a cookie sheet. She then walks over to Blythe with a grin on her face, "Good Evening Blythe. It is good to see you again."

Skye smiles and nods at Caressa, moving over towards Chef Reuben. He looks a bit nervous but he follows the Chef's advice, shaping the loaves and carefully sticking them in the oven. He draws in the scent. "They do smell good." He admits, nodding his head.

"Just squish it around a little," Beckett encourages Blythe to mash the loaf, "it won't bite." His brow grows a worried crease when Blythe expresses a joy of meat that boarded on perverse. "Ah-- Not vegan here. Nope." He straightens his own posture, fussing with the balance of his glasses. Beckett then turns to Caressa. "Yeah those... Those festivals really used to mean something more to people when crops were seasonal, too. People are so used to getting whatever they want whenever they want from a grocery it really detaches a person from the labor of hand and earth that goes into making food. Prime example of commodity fetishization. Pear preserves sound... I'd try them. Just because you can't find it in a shop doesn't mean it's not worth a try."

Caressa nods to Blythe, "Saturday afternoon." She continues to give Blythe directions to the place. "I'll write it down for you before we close up." She motions in Blythe's direction, "Oh, don't force him. Some people don't like things sticking to their hands..." She pauses and blinks, "Would you like a pair of gloves, Blythe?" Then she glances back to Beckett, "These rituals still mean something to people today too. Except now we have to contend with the ... majority which sees it differently." She tries to be delicate about it.

Shaserra ohhs softly as Caressa tells about the early meaning and importance of the festival, looking up with a smile as she and then speak about sharing with the earth and the disconnect of modern society. "Mmm there is something so... Fulfilling in making with your hands, seeing what you have made, especially if it helps community."

Blythe looked to Elizabeth. "Thanks for the meal." He answered with the saccharine gratefulness of the undeserving. Blue eyes flash to Beckett as he made eloquent sounds. His head bobbed to the rhythm. Agreeing or simply enjoying the cadence being open to interpretation. Unquestionable however was his captivation. "They will be as sweet as peaches." He opined. Recounting a delectable confection. "No; no need." He answered to the question of gloves. A brave face being put on as he floured his digits, somehow getting the majority of the powder over himself despite the calculated efforts to seem culinarily seasoned. Too-big smiles being given to any which noticed his ineptitude in the kitchen. This was all just fun, right? Palms pressed into goopy glutenin muck and kinda-sorta kneaded it. Stealing his technique from the furtive glances at the more attentive students of the bakery craft... While somehow despite his 'cheating' getting it all wrong. "Gah!" He exclaimed, backing away. "It conspires against me."

Blythe leaned into his partner-in-crime, Beckett, and asked, as if it was a conspiracy. "When will be the Sat-UR-day?"

[Beckett] "Yeah I didn't mean to imply no one celebrated those things anymore, after all, there's a room full of people that are interested," he reaches for the gloves but pauses when Blythe braves the mushy mass on his own. "Did the yeast take on its own sentience and -rise- up against you?" He chuckles. "Saturday... It's Thursday now, so two days from today. Nigh the full moon. It'll be a lovely night for it, I imagine."

Caressa smiles kindly at Blythe. "Yes, it seems that way sometimes. I've had many conversations with stubborn bread and more stubborn yeast." She tilts her head at Blythe recognizing the signs, perhaps. She nods to what Beckett says silently while check on other students. Someone further down the table calling out, "We're out of flour". Caressa goes to check and nods, "Yes, we are. So now we just need to get it all baked. Everyone gets a loaf to take home tonight. Most of the rest will be taken to homeless shelters in the morning or saved for the feast on Saturday."

Elizabeth giggles a bit at Blythe's remark about the conspiracy of the dough, "Oh I love it. What a dramatic choice of words. I really hope to spend more time with you Blythe. Tell me, what is your favorite meat? Cow, Deer, Sheep, Chicken? I think I might arrange something soon, where you can have as much of your favorite meat as you wish."

Shaserra laughs softly at the pun, shaking her head at how bad, but good it was." More water, kneading kneading.. More flour, ohh the cycle.. When she needs more water, she adds just a teaspoon at a time as needed, working the dough between.

Blythe smiled as a gate -- perhaps a poor transliteration of a colloquial expression. That was to say he beamed. Brightly. Like sun beams. As he confessed: "Chicken." Like the fox who sprung the coup. "I hear it is a great american tradition to fry it deeply." He nodded, as the uninitiated oft did. Understanding, tenuously, the form without comprehending the meat of the matter. "Is this how it is done?" He asked the master-baker as he kneaded the dough in heart-shaped motions. Forward, backward, then forward in the opposite direction as he spied a more expert beadmaker manipulated the dough. While not being wholly a heart shape it was NEAR ENOUGH. If there's a more concise and appropriate way to write it; it was beyond the comprehension of both character and narrator.

Skye slips back in after stepping out to take a call. He glances about to see what's going on now. He apologizes to Chef Reuben. "Sorry about that."

Caressa nods to Blythe, "That is a lovely loaf. Now just set it in the bowl for it rise a while." She hears a shout from the kitchen and goes to help Chef Reuben pull the loaves out of the oven and get the next batch loaded in. Then she calls to the crowd. "Everyone!" She raises her hands to get their attention. "I want to thank you all for coming! Please finish up what your batch of dough so we can get them into the ovens. If you have no dough to work on, we could use help washing the dishes. Taryn out front has the loaves for you to take with you. Tomorrow is fruit preservation! Hope to see you all there too!"