Bread Fundamentals Part I (3 class series)
$490 per person
Our Fundamentals classes are designed to give home cooks a solid foundation of skills for everyday cooking and baking. They will build your confidence, equip you with techniques, and provide you with abundant inspiration in the kitchen.
What You'll Learn
By the end of the class you will:
- Know how to mix, develop, ferment, and proof basic yeast doughs.
- Handle and shape doughs with bench skill techniques that professional bakers use.
- Know how to adjust an oven for better results with your home-baked breads.
About This Class
Our Bread Fundamentals Series are designed to help you build a foundational set of skills to both prepare and handle a variety of leavened doughs. There are two separate courses: Bread Fundamentals One and Bread Fundamentals Two.
These courses are designed to expand your technical knowledge of WHY bread baking works while improving HOW you develop, handle, and shape bread dough.
The class will meet once a week over three consecutive weeks. While Bread Fundamentals One is not a required pre-requisite for Fundamentals Two, it is highly suggested that this be the first course you take in the series unless you already have a significant level of bread baking experience. Students in levels Two will be expected to have a thorough understanding of foundational baking skills.
Bread Fundamentals One lays the foundation, covering core techniques, ingredients, and skills for working with basic lean, soft, and rich breads. You’ll cover kneading and shaping and learn how to tell when a dough has properly fermented and risen. Bread Fundamentals One is the best place to start for anyone looking to gain a more thorough understanding of bread baking technique. After mastering how to make and shape a basic bread dough, you’ll move into pretzels, pizza dough, and torpedo rolls.
Class Meetup Dates:
Mon. Oct 21st: 10/21, 10/28, 11/4
Session One: Yeast Bread 101
Learn the standard phases that all breads go through, all the time. Get your hands right into the dough and make Sandwich Bread, Dinner Rolls, and Focaccia. Start calibrating your hands to the feel of these different doughs and practice basic bench skills for handling and shaping dough.
Session Two: Different flours, different shapes
Vary the steps or substitute different types of flour in this session. Hands-on practice making authentic German Pretzels and Semolina Torpedo Rolls. You’ll make a rich Brioche that freezes well to fit your home schedule.
Session Three: Putting it all together!
Experience how pro bakers juggle mixing, shaping, and baking different doughs all in one session. Remember that Brioche from last week? It makes the most tender burger buns you’ll ever enjoy. Honey Whole Wheat bread and your hand-stretched pizza wrap up the night.
- Wine included
- Light meal served in class
- Work in teams
- Suitable for vegetarians
- Three-session series
- Ages 18+
The average duration of our cooking classes is 4 hours, and they are broken down into three segments: Introductory lecture or demo, hands-on cooking, and eating.
The class will begin with a short discussion or demo from your instructor. After, you can expect to work either on a team or individually to prepare the class menu. As a group, your class will prepare the selected menu in its entirety. In most classes, not every student will make every dish.
Learning happens throughout the class, and your instructor will often call out key techniques as they happen in each recipe.
Most classes conclude by sitting down as a group to eat what you’ve prepared, followed by a discussion of each recipe. You will leave with a copy of the recipe packet and a working knowledge of every dish that was made so you can recreate them at home.
Doors open 15 minutes before the class start time.
You do not need to bring anything with you to class, unless otherwise noted in the class description. The kitchens at SFCS are fully equipped and aprons, recipes, equipment, food and wine are all provided for you.
In most classes, you will be sitting down to eat a complete meal that you have prepared along with your classmates. Since this typically occurs towards the end of the class period, an appetizer or small plate is usually prepared early on in class. However, you’re welcome to additionally have a snack before you arrive or bring one with you.
Please note, for our Baking & Pastry classes, a light meal will be provided for you.
We suggest wearing casual clothing you can easily move around in, and highly recommend wearing comfortable closed-toe shoes. Long hair should be pulled back.
Jessica Sullivan got her start cooking professionally with Paul Kliste at his Restaurante Fratelli in Portland, Oregon. After relocating to San Francisco in 2004, she worked as executive pastry chef at Nancy Oakes’ Boulevard Restaurant, and later at Prospect. In 2012, she accepted the position of executive pastry chef for Craig Stoll’s Delfina Restaurant Group. Today, she is a full-time Pastry Arts instructor at San Francisco Cooking School and serves on the board of non-profit Sprouts Cooking Club.
Michael Kalanty is an author and artisan baker. He speaks on craft bread baking at industry conferences and teaches professional classes in the San Francisco Bay Area. His professional artisan baking course is offered through the Pastry and Baking Program at the Art Institute in San Francisco.