Archive for December, 2008

More Stollen!

Friday, December 19th, 2008

Yesterday’s Stollen bake went off without a hitch.  Everything went as planned, roughly on schedule, and the Stollen are beautiful and delicious.  They are definitely the best we’ve baked!

Unfortunately, we didn’t bake enough of them.   Over half of them were spoken for before they even went into the oven, and we sold the last uncommitted one this morning.  Because of that, we will be baking a second batch of Stollen tomorrow.  They are scheduled to come out of the oven before we open at 7:30am, but they won’t be ready to sell until a few hours later.  (After baking they get coated with clarified butter, then coarse sugar, then dusted with powdered sugar after they fully cool.)

If you know you want a Stollen from tomorrow’s bake, let us know.  If you aren’t sure, stop by the bakery in the morning.  We’ll have a sample Stollen from the first bake at the front counter for you to try.

See you soon.

Peter

Christmas Baking

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

It’s interesting how  planning this year’s Stollen bake brought bake memories of last year and where we were at.  We were renting Jean Kay’s kitchen a couple nights a week, and I was selling at my little table in the Masonic Square on Saturdays.  Stollen bakes are always exciting, but also pretty intimidating because the ingredient cost is sky high and we only have one chance to get it right.  Also since the hydration of the dough is very low and the butter content is very high, the process is radically different than regular breads.

We are baking the Stollen on Thursday and they will be available for sale on Friday.  We have a sign up list going for those that are sure they want one (or 2, or 3) .  They will $12 for a  1.5# Stollen.  We are also baking Christmas cookies this week.  Ginger Bread, Sugar Cookies, and Shortbread are definitely on the list.  There may be some others.  We will start working on them today, but they probably won’t be decorated and out until late this afternoon or tomorrow.

Holiday hours:

Tuesday 23 Dec — Normal hours (7:30am – 6pm)
Christmas Eve — 9am-12am (special order pickup)
Christmas Day — Closed
Boxing Day (26 Dec) — Closed
Saturday 27 Dec — Normal hours (7:30am – 4pm)

Happy holidays!

Peter

Gluten Free

Saturday, December 6th, 2008

I’m starting to work on gluten free breads.  So far, I haven’t gotten very far.  I have some ingredients to work with, but I haven’t opened anything yet because I need to get storage containers so they don’t get contaminated with all the wheat flour that floats around the bakery.  There is also a lot of planning to do to keep the wheat out of the products we make.  Simple things like setting hot items on a wire rack to cool are not so simple an environment full of wheat.

I’m not sure when I will have the first GF trials, but when I do, I’ll have samples for people to try.  I’m sure it will take many iterations before I get something I’m happy with.  Stay tuned!

We’ve added the French dinner rolls we made for thanksgiving to our daily breads, and the croissants are now everyday but Tuesdays.  (It takes 3 days to make them.)  We make the croissants plain, chocolate and cinnamon.  All of them are flaky and buttery — very buttery!  Sometimes we also turn a portion of the dough into danishes with a bit of vanilla pastry cream and fruit jam filling.  We’ll probably eventually turn that into a product line, but for now, it’s a bit of fun when we have time.

I hope everyone had a nice thanksgiving.  It’s now officially the Christmas season – may favorite time of year for baking ridiculously rich things.  I will be baking stollen for sure, but I am not sure on pricing yet.  We will start a list for people that want one (or several).  We are open for suggestions for other holiday baking so let us know if you have any desires.

See you soon!

Peter