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Masterchef Live 2011 – Brasserie Bread Artisan Baking Workshop

November 7, 2011

Artisan Baking Workshop with Brasserie Bread

Brasserie Bread Workshop

Masterchef Live was great fun (you can read about the rest of the day in my post here: Masterchef Live 2011), but the highlight of the day would have to been the hands on Brasserie Bread artisan breadmaking course! I’m a huge fan of Brasserie Bread’s bread and cafe, and have always wanted to do one of their baking courses. The classes ran every 2 hours, and with only 20 spots – competition was FIERCE. My friend and I made the executive decision to line up for as long as it took. How long it took turned out to be little over an hour. We basically lined up as soon as the last class ended, and waited for our class to begin!

Matthew Brock was our tutor, and he talked about what the difference was between commercially baked bread, and artisan bread. Along with using and honouring traditional methods, Artisan bakers use their hands, and bake from the heart.

Brasserie Bread Workshop
Our fearless teacher, Matthew Brock, Brasserie Bread’s training officer

He demonstrated a simple recipe for an Italian Schiacciata – an olive oil based flat bread similar to a foccacia. I was amazed at how few ingredients were required – just some strong bread flour, water, a teaspoon or two of olive oil, instant yeast, and salt!

Matthew showed us the Autolyse method of dough kneading. Instead of kneading the dough continuously for 20 minutes straight, we kneaded for 2 minutes, then let the dough rest for 2 minutes – repeating this process a total of 6 times. Much less work, for a better flavour! Kneading the dough is incredibly fun, and involves throwing, stretching and folding the dough over and over. Very cathartic!! Sorry, not too many photos… hands all doughy.

Brasserie Bread Workshop
Stretching the bread dough

Brasserie Bread Workshop
My little dough ball

I have to say at this point I was totally revelling in my “Yakitate Japan!” fantasies, and could be heard yelling out “SOLAR HANDSSSS” at regular intervals.

Brasserie Bread Workshop
Our dough balls ready to sleep

I was wondering how we’d have time to mix, knead, prove AND bake our breads in such a short 1 hour class – and I was worried we’d have to throw our little dough balls away at the end. But no! We got to keep them, to bake later that night at home :D! The Brasserie Bread stand kept our little named boxes in their fridge for us, ready to pick up at home-time.

Brasserie Bread Workshop
Matt showing us how to final shape our dough

Brasserie Bread Workshop
Schiacciata con l’uva – bread with grapes!

Brasserie Bread Workshop
“Here’s one I prepared earlier”

And of course we all got to taste:

Brasserie Bread Workshop

Brasserie Bread Workshop

Crunchy on the outside from the demerara sugar, and the thin crust – and light and fluffy on the inside, the grapes on top have burst in the oven, letting the juice escape to form a caramelised layer. SO GOOD. And after doing all that kneading, I bet it tasted even better.

Such a good lesson, and well worth the 1 hour waiting time. Matt was such a great teacher, and I really appreciated how the class was aimed at simple techniques that could be replicated at home. After the class I felt really confident to bake my own bread (and in fact I did… which I will blog about soon!)

Masterchef Live was held from the 7th-10th October 2011
Hordern Pavilion & Royal Hall of Industries
Tickets were $30.

If you liked this post you might enjoy my other post about Masterchef Live:
Masterchef Live 2011

16 Comments leave one →
  1. November 7, 2011 10:43 pm

    It really does look like yakitate!! japan live action… That bread looks delicious!

    • November 7, 2011 10:58 pm

      Yakitate taught me so much…. I just never knew it o_o

  2. November 7, 2011 10:52 pm

    I’ve been to two classes led by Matt and he is the most patient teacher, plus Brasserie Bread is some of the best bread I’ve ever had.

    • November 7, 2011 10:57 pm

      Oh I so completely agree!! Matt also led a sourdough class at Eat.Drink.Blog last weekend, and I knew I had to attend. Such a great and encouraging teacher. I showed him photos of the bread I made since the class at Masterchef Live and he was so happy to hear I’d been making bread at home!! Made me all :)) inside (and outside).

  3. November 7, 2011 11:23 pm

    lol. Yakitate! Must finish watching the series!

  4. November 8, 2011 10:04 am

    Great write up Mel and I’m really happy you enjoyed the session and still managed to take beautiful photo’s that capture the moment. Keep baking and I look forward to seeing more of your home baking exploits….. Matt

    • November 14, 2011 5:56 pm

      Thanks so much Matt!! I really enjoyed your workshops so much, and like I said – they made me feel really confident to be able to make bread by myself at home. I even showed a friend how to do it, and last I heard she’s been making bread at home too 🙂 It’s contagious~!

  5. November 8, 2011 9:32 pm

    looking forward to the bread posts. I can’t believe you waited for so long!

    • November 14, 2011 5:57 pm

      I knowww… I can’t believe it either. Lucky we were pretty tired from walking around and eating free stuff so waiting in line for an hour was an ok rest haha

  6. November 9, 2011 9:25 am

    Matt is so great! I did a sourdough course with him a couple of months back. I cant wait to see your bread post 🙂

    • November 14, 2011 5:58 pm

      That would have been amazing! I would love to try making sourdough, have you had any luck making your starter? 🙂

  7. January 8, 2012 9:01 am

    This looks like great fun, happy baking!


  1. Masterchef Live 2011 « crunchytiger
  2. Eat Drink Blog 2011 « crunchytiger
  3. Brasserie Bread’s Schiacciata con l’uva « crunchytiger
  4. Brasserie Bread – Art of Sourdough class « crunchytiger

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