On Saturday, 26th May 2018, eight rural women went to Öllingen. Öllingen is a small village approx. 20km north of Ulm. They were expected there by master baker Andreas Stolz. He had already lit fire for the wood-fired oven to have the right temperature.
The baking house has already existed before WW2 but it was rebuilt in 2005. A baking house feast takes place every 5 years. The baking house is used less than before. There used to be 10 baking teams. Andreas Stolz regularly holds classes for the Adult Education Centre.
Rural women once were peasant women from a village. Today, there are hardly any peasant women left – rural women are simply women living in a village doing activities together.
Every participating woman had brought a bowl. Andreas Stolz explained how the dough should be made. First, a sponge was made. Flour, sourdough, yeast and water were kneaded, covered and put to rest for one hour. In the meantime, Andreas Stolz brought more wood and talked about his passion – bread baking. He is a baker with passion.
Then, wheat and rye flour, more yeast and warm water were added and kneaded by hand. Andreas Stolz checked everything and the bowls were covered again and the dough rested for another hour.
After an hour, the wood-fired oven had reached the right baking temperature (330 – 350 degrees), the ashes were taken from the oven and it was cleaned with a wet bread paddle.
The baking women had to put their dough on the working surface one after another and put it into four pieces in ball shape. These were put into the bowl for the oven and the bowl was then put into the oven. Before, on every piece of dough, a small piece of paper with the name of the baker was put upon. After putting the dough in, the bowl for the oven was dipped in water.
After 50-60 minutes, the breads were baked. Andreas Stolz took them out with a bread paddle. They were “cleaned” with a wet broom in order to make them look glossy. The bread had become gorgeous and the well-known smell of wood-oven bread filled the room.
Everyone was proud of the result and they had learnt a lot from the passionate baker Andreas Stolz.