Midnight Drama

I am still on the bread making spree and this time round, I am trying out some of other recipes for soft white bread which I have seen online.

Well, as usual, the moment my girl has drifted off to dreamland, I jumped off the bed and started to prep my ingredients. Within 10mins I was ready to mix the dough. Can it really be that fast? Yes!

But (there is ALWAYS a but), the moment I touched the dough to start kneading, I knew it in my bones that something was very wrong.

I didn't warm up the milk. DUH!

Well, blame it on my poor translation skills. Cos you see, the recipe is Japanese and my Jap hasn't progressed much further than lesson 4 of the Elementary level. So go figure.

Anyway, the milk part was not the drama mentioned in the title.

I was in the process of working the butter into dough when I smelled intense smell of burning plastic. I thought to myself: geez, my dryer plug fused again (it happened before and the dryer had just completed a cycle). So I worked my dough quickly so that I could unplug the socket. But that was not the source of the smell. I checked outside my kitchen window and guess what? My neighbour's kitchen was in flames!

Erm, okay, let's slow down abit. The moment I looked downstairs, I saw my downstairs neighbour's wall had the reflection of flickering flames. The smell was really intense and my kitchen was getting really smoky. Then I saw people gathering downstairs looking up at my direction. Bad news, I thought to myself. A second later, I heard a lady (from I don't know where, but I heard her loud and clear so she was probably from upstairs) asking those people down below what the heck was going on.

I really have no idea what happened even until now. Cos I heard my downstairs neighbour's doorbell rang and the firemen came but left. All this time, that downstairs neighbour didn't bother to turn on any of their lights! Were they awake? I guess I will never know.

So back to my bread dough. I just checked with Jeffrey Hamelman, or rather his book - Bread. It reads: "When milk is used in yeast breads, it should be heated to about 190degF, a temperature higher than pasteurization, in order to denature the serum protein. Unheated, the serum is active and has a weakening effect on the structure of the gluten." So is he predicting that my bread would be a failure? Sounds like it. By the way 190degF is about 87degC. Erm, I thought we only heat the milk to about 40degC max?

Well, anyway, I am still waiting for the first proof to be completed. (^.^)


  1. OH MY GOD!!!! How do you go from "oh my neighbors house was burning down" to "oh and the bread is on it's second rise" :) What an amazingly weird night!
    So what turned out to be the source of the fire? And I suppose somewhat as important...how does the bread taste? (Ahem) smoky? ;>

  2. Haha...you can say that again. I guess I wasn't that worried when I realised that the firemen didn't stick around. But I am glad that everything is back to normal now.

    My kitchen smells of burning plastic but thank goodness my bread did not. I will post up the pictures later.


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