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Taiwan bakery tour

A friend of mine from church owns eight bakeries between Hsinchu and Taipei and invited me to tour the factory where they make everything. 
 Vivien is so nice to have given us a hands-on bakery tour.
This baker has worked for her for four years and has been trained in Japan on some specialty bread techniques.  This is Bori bread that is like crusty fresh loaf and soft inside.  He makes a quick cut with a blade held at an angle before putting into a hot stone oven (225 degrees Celsius) for 16 minutes.
 A favorite bread for me in Taiwan is this delicious cheese bread.
 I paid close attention and hope to be able to make my own version of cheese bread at home.
 After a sprinkle of black pepper and a row of high-melt cheese is added, it gets rolled up for the final rising.
 The bread is placed on canvas and handled gently before it goes into the oven.
 The scoring on this raisin and walnut bread was very artful with a sprinkling of flour before the cutting.
 Hot, fresh bread, right out of the oven smelled wonderful.
 Here's another friend of mine, whom I visit teach.
Her daughter, Lisa, just got home from her mission in Taiwan a couple of weeks ago is temporarily working at the bakery part-time.  She wasn't in a photo taking mood, which I can respect.
Neither was I!  But I smiled for the camera, make-up free, hair-net and all.  My friends and I enjoyed the day and Vivien gave each of us a loaf of Bori bread and a loaf of walnut raisin bread.  Vivien also gave me a kilo of her imported Japanese flour that is high-quality finely milled, and a bag of high-melt cheese to try out whipping up some bread soon.
It was a really fun outing and I snapped a few pictures of the rice paddy fields that show up in random spots, where ever possible.
Out of curiosity, I would like to have a lesson in rice growing so I can understand the process better.  I don't plan to grow any myself, but want to figure out how it grows and is harvested. I only know first hand what the fields looks like since they can be seen all over the place from where I've been so far in Taiwan.
In addition, I often see small patches of land nestled just about anywhere, of gardens where various produce is grown.  It's impressive how the Taiwanese have such a green thumb and are excellent at growing things.
Once I got home from the Elly Family bakery, I had worked up an appetite and was anxious to transform my Bori bread into something for lunch.
 I sliced it into thick slices and started cooking some bacon, imported from the United States through Costco.
Freshly baked bread with crispy bacon would be perfect for an American classic sandwich, the BLT, which is bacon, lettuce, and tomato on bread.
One thing I missed last fall was Miracle Whip, so I packed two plastic jars of it in my luggage and brought back to Taiwan.  Mayonnaise is readily available, but not this good stuff.  I like Miracle Whip on certain sandwiches, and mayo on other types.
Open faced BLTs for my lunch and for Christopher's after school snack were amazing with the soft and crusty bread.  They were a bit difficult to eat without another slice of bread on top, but it was a small loaf and I had plenty of toppings to spare.
There's a store in Hsinchu that sells one my favorite soft drinks, Diet A&W root beer, that went nicely with my meal.
It will be interesting to attempt scaling down the recipes that I got from Vivien's commercial-sized bakery to my household Kitchen Aid mixer.
 Their bakery had several huge mixers to get the job done.  She said this one costs about the same as a car!
This popular Taiwanese painting hangs in Vivien's office and is supposed to represent people rushing into your business and bring you good luck.
There are all kinds of things here that symbolize good luck, including this smiling old guy that was also in her factory.  Wish me luck as I try to make some cheese bread and Bori bread next week!  I'll be sure to post my results on my blog, unless it's a total flop, then I won't bother.
I'm grateful for the beautiful day and enjoyed the kindness of my friends, who helped to plant this cherry tree.
Check out the busy little bee in the center of the tree above.  Last year several of the women from church wanted to add some cheer to the grounds around the chapel, so they planted several cherry trees around the perimeter of the property to add beauty.  What a great idea!  Their act of service by planting those trees will be enjoyed by many in the future.
Vivien's kindness of sharing her bakery secrets with me will hopefully allow me to share what I have learned with family and friends for years to come as I bake with for them.  Thank you, Vivien, and Demi and Sis. Lin!


Kellie said…
Fun and yummy!!! When you master that bread, I want the recipe.
Julie said…
I love BLT's almost more than anything, and that is so great that you can have them there! what fun to tour a bakery there. You have really nice friends. I am glad they share their lives with you. I hope you have success making the cheese bread.
Bobbi said…
What fun to tour the bakery. With your cooking skills, I'll bet your bread turns out great. Good luck!
Dianne said…
That cheesy bread & BLT looks yummy, it all does! What neat friends you are making, thanks for sharing.
Casa de Mask said…
How fun!! I know this meant a great deal to you since you are such an amazing cook yourself. I must tell you how much I enjoy following your blog and reading about all the wonderful experiences you guys are having living out of the states. Much love to you, Kelly!!

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