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OSU students’ knead for bread satisfied through one campus club

OSU Bread Club members Michael Mascolino (left) and Erica Cramer, primary leader of the club, make a pumpkin roll.  Credit: Courtesy of Matthew Pham

OSU Bread Club members Michael Mascolino (left) and Erica Cramer, primary leader of the club, make a pumpkin roll.
Credit: Courtesy of Matthew Pham

One club on campus is the best thing since sliced bread for some Ohio State students.

“We make bread and then we eat it,” said Erica Cramer, a fourth-year in food science and technology and primary leader of the OSU Bread Club.

The Bread Club is a student organization that meets once a week and makes bakery items such as bagels, pretzels and muffins.

“A lot of the time people say ‘This is the best club ever,’” Cramer said. “But then you have other people that go ‘Bread club? What is that?’”

The club was founded in 2010 by five math majors whose love for bread and baking drew them to the idea, Cramer said.

“They saw they had enough people to make the club and have the university pay for it,” Cramer said.

The club has risen from a small gathering of bread lovers to a club that meets regularly in the somewhat small kitchen on the third floor of the RPAC.

“We generally have 15 people a week and the limit of people in the kitchen is 12,” Cramer said. “I like for everyone to participate and I wish we did have a bigger space.”

The club focuses on involving every member who attends the meetings in the bread making process, Cramer said.

“Even if it’s just adding one ingredient, I try to make sure everyone gets to do something,” Cramer said.

Along with the weekly meetings, the club holds one event per semester where the club meets in the Ohio Union’s demonstration kitchen for a four-hour long session, Cramer said.

Cramer said the club makes quick bread recipes because of the two-hour time constraint of their meetings, but has made such items such as homemade Pop-tarts, pizza, pasta and nachos. Most of the club’s recipes are gathered from the Internet but are also brought in by members from cookbooks and family recipes. The club also experiments with unusual recipes such as a bread containing apples, cheddar cheese and onions.

“There was something interesting about taking those ingredients and using them,” Cramer said of the bread. “And it turned out to be really good.”

The club also discusses the involvement of techniques and ingredients in recipes and why they are necessary to make the bread.

Brenna Gabriel, a first-year in economics, said she would maybe attend club meetings.

“I like bread,” Gabriel said. “So it does sound good to go to.”

Sarah Chilson, a third-year in speech and hearing, said the club sounded cool, but she would not join.

“I think (the club) would be more for people who are into baking,” Chilson said.

Cramer said the club is a mixture of members of different majors, such as engineering and science majors.

“I think a lot of it has to do with the creativity of mixing things together,” Cramer said of the members. “We go all over the board.”

Bread Club meets Wednesdays from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. during the school session throughout the year in the RPAC. Members pay a $15 participation fee per semester or $25 fee for the entire year.

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