Pet Peeve #1 Supermarket Bakeries
I remember as a child, every city/town had a local bakery. The first thing you noticed was the wonderful smell; sweet, savory, and comforting. Glass display cases, overflowing with every type of cookie, pastry, cake and bread. All were beautifully decorated and arranged. But the very best thing was the taste. Oh my, the buttery, sweet layers of yummy goodness!
Fast forward to the last 20-30 years. Most local bakeries have gone out of business due to large super market chains with in-store bakeries. Aside from the convenience of these stores, you also have the benefit of great prices. You can buy a 4-pack of apple turnovers or a dozen cookies for next to nothing compared to the prices of your local bakery.
However, walking into the bakery section of your local supermarket you don’t notice the fresh baked scent. Baked goods are usually stacked and overflowing on tables with very few display cases. But here is the real rub: the taste, or should I say, lack of taste. You see, most supermarket bakeries get their items already baked, mass produced in large warehouses or pre-baked where they bake in the store for a few moments to brown up. And they can sell them as “fresh baked”. That is why you can go to several different supermarket bakeries and you will see all same items. They buy from the same distributor. But if you want a real shock check out the list of ingredients. Here is a good one, diacetyl tartaric acid esters of mono and diglycerides, and don’t forget artificial flavor. Yum! You are getting all the calories, fats, sweeteners, and sodium, but you are not getting much flavor.
Ready for the revolution? Support your local bakeries! They are springing up here, there and everywhere. They are worth traveling a little farther and paying a bit more for artisan quality and taste – and definitely worth savoring each and every bite of a fresh baked piece of heaven. These bakeries actually use butter, sugar, flour and natural flavors – and are full of flavor.
Some of my favorite bakeries are:
Black Market Bakery in Costa Mesa and Santa Ana, CA
Layer Cake Bakery in Irvine and Fullerton, CA
Extraordinary Desserts in San Diego, CA
Where are your favorite bakeries? Let’s share our best kept secrets and support our local bakers.