February 9, 2011 § 3 Comments
I still don’t have dough to work with of my own yet, so I stopped by the Great Harvest Bread Company this morning to check out their operation. One thing I love about this project is that I’m getting out and exploring places I might not have known about otherwise. Scott, the owner, was nice enough to show me around and explain a bit about what they do. I’m starting to notice a common theme with the craftsmen/ladies I’ve met thus far and I’d say they share a certain gleam in their eyes when they talk about what they do.
Another trend I’ve noticed with people who devote themselves to a craft, like bread-making, is that they care about the entire process from ingredients to how the customer enjoys what they’ve made. Scott showed me how each day they mill over 200 lbs. of their own grains from Montana and use it to make bread the very next day so it is completely fresh. That’s right. They mill their own flour EVERYDAY on-site. Scott also makes it a point to offer each customer a free fresh slice straight out of the oven when you stop by. I imagine when you go to all that trouble, you want to see the look on people’s faces when they’re enjoying the fruits of your labor. I tried a slice of their white bread and it was the perfect thing to warm me up from the cold outside.
At Great Harvest they use a sponge fermentation method, so they start from scratch each day. They make over 300 goodies each day from white loaves to rye to cinnamon rolls. I may or may not be eating one of those delicious cinnamon rolls as I type this. Scott chuckled to me that he still loves it after 27 years because he learns something new about bread each day. It’s a living, breathing entity I suppose.
Wonder how far I’ll get in a week in getting to know bread…