Think how many souls you could have sprung from limbo with thisbutter.jpg block of butter! Fifty-five pounds of butter, to be exact. This is only one of dozens of butter blocks that will be carved into pastry, frosting, cakes and cookies at Gayle’s Bakery on any given day.

I thought of Michelangelo as I watched this pastry worker slicing off slabs of creamy richness from the mother block.