The project came about when boys from the Drive Estate E17 told Sally and Bobby, artists who run the Drawing Shed project on the estate, that they really wanted to learn how to bake bread.
Over the course of the three days the boys learnt how to mix, knead, prove, plait, roll and bake. They made loaves in tins which they baked at home, and shaped loaves and rolls, garlic bread and pizzas which were baked in the Drawing Shed’s clay oven, and then eaten each day for lunch. A lot of cheese was put on a lot of pizzas, and the final day culminated in a big feast of baked goods with Mums, Dads, neighbours and friends joining in.
The aim of the project was to encourage the boys to bake bread for their families and so the participants in the workshop were given a Top Boys Bakers pack which included an apron decorated by themselves, a recipe book, 2 bread tins, a mixing bowl, a bread scraper, tea towels and enough bread flour and yeast to make six loaves.
The boys were all lively, enthusiastic and fun to work with. Feedback from them and their parents has been very positive, and the Collective and the Drawing Shed are currently planning more breadmaking workshops on the estate.
The Top Boys Bakers Project was initiated by the Drawing Project, run in collaboration with the Hornbeam Bakers Collective and funded by Walthamstow and Chingford Alms Charity.
The project was filmed by Karimah Ashadu and the finished film will be available on the Drawing Shed’s website www.thedrawingshed.org, together with more information about the Drawing Shed’s work.