With the world in lockdown our firefighters have restricted opportunities to undertake training exercises. As you will know, firefighters have inventive and highly active brains, so it will be of no surprise to you to find a group of firefighters honing their Road Crash Rescue Support (RCRS) tool skills, by making a cake.
The task set these firefighters was, using power tools only, to make white chocolate fudge from a Betty Crocker cake mix.
Ingredients and rules
- Packet of Fudge mix
- 80g (1/3 cup) butter
- Two eggs
- Cake making tools: bowl, spoon, knife, whisk and measure
- Ingredients cannot be touched by human hands
- Recipe must be followed (no short cuts)
- The team thought getting into the packet mix would be easy, but 15 minutes into the exercise and the packet isn’t open using the cutters and spreaders, and they also have to be careful not to spill the contents.
- In comes help with the spreaders to hold the packet steady, but the scissors can’t open the cellophane bag. With much dexterity the knife is picked up and used to cut the bag open, before pouring the contents into a mixing bowl.
- The next ingredient is the 1/3 cup of butter. The team is lucky in that the butter wrapping has quantity markings on it and there is no need to get the scales out. All they have to do is slice at the 1/3 cup mark, and this is done quickly with the spreaders holding the knife. But getting the wrapper off is another story involving delicate teamwork and communication using spreaders and cutters.
- Now for the hard one: lifting without breaking the eggs until the egg is over the bowl. The instructor had little faith in his team and brought in a dozen eggs, hoping he may get two. He of little faith did not recognise the skills of his team. With delicate spreader manipulation and two attempts, two eggs are in the mixing bowl.
- Butter and eggs are mixed with spreaders holding the spoon, then the cake is was added and mixed in. For this stage the four members of the team take turns stirring the mixture to get it to the right consistency before pouring into a baking tray.
- The oven is set at 160˚C and the tray placed in for 30 minutes. The final product did not look exactly like the Betty Crocker white chocolate fudge, but, in fact, the instructor set the oven to grill and ironically burnt the whole project.
While comical on the surface, this cooking effort / drill provided an excellent opportunity to build on operational communication and equipment skills, while having a laugh undertaking a very different task.
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