A week at the Folk School is about much more than taking a class. Most students choose to stay in the school’s rustic dormitories. They can walk anywhere on campus, along wooded paths or across the rolling hay fields. Meals are served family-style in the dining hall and announced by the ringing of a giant bell. Special diets are accommodated.
Each day begins with “Morningsong” in the common room. After class, there are activities planned like the Tuesday night folk dance, demonstrations by that week’s teachers, and a trip to the Yarn Circle. The week ends with the student show, where all the classes display their work. If you can stay Friday night, there’s always a performance on campus.
And of course, you’ll be in class for six hours each day. “The Science of Bread” begins with simple recipes and a focus on the process of bread-making. We have lots of discussion on the first day, covering the science of dough but also how it affects bread: why does using a poolish add flavor? Why do sweet breads require special yeast? How can ovens be adjusted to improve crust and loaf expansion? By Tuesday we’ll be feeding sourdough starters and churning out loaves of bread. Mid-week, students are invited to choose their own recipes, or to continue working with mine. The class covers the entire process so beginners should be comfortable; more experienced bakers can make additional recipes. (Contact Emily if you’re wondering if the class is right for you.)
You can learn more about the Folk School at their website.
Photos from my June, 2014 class.
Registration is available at the Folk School’s website.
(above) Davidson Hall where the cooking studio is located, Brian (the class assistant, January, 2010) bakes in the outdoor oven in spite of the snow, and the Folk School’s herb garden which is just outside the cooking studio.