Archive for December, 2015

Merry Christmas

Friday, December 25th, 2015

Merry Christmas everyone!!!!

Handmade multi-color holiday cane cookies.

Home-Based Baking at its Best!

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What is “Local”?

Friday, December 18th, 2015

What does local mean to you?

I’ve always envisioned the word local to mean a product made and sold within an area’s geographic borders, preferably from ingredients sourced from that same geographic area. The intent was to help support local folks – your neighbors – and support the local economy.

Many small businesses across the country do use the word “local” to signify that their products are made or grown in their geographic region. It’s a well-used phrase that’s been instrumental in helping small businesses increase their revenue and survive in a competitive marketplace.

But it appears that the phrase “buy local” has expanded far beyond its original intent. The concept is wonderful, but the phrase has been overused and misused.

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This lovely bakery produces their product in a small community. But when they use the words “shop locally” they mean buy our products from your local retailer. On one level it appears to makes sense, but it also appears disingenuous.

I understand the theory and importance of purchasing from your neighbors. I understand the importance of spending your money within your area to support your local economy, and I sure know the importance of helping small businesses pay their rent and support their families. BUT expanding the term local to include products made far away but purchased by consumers in their local town, seems somewhat misguided and hypocritical. Frankly, it seems to be a sin against the “Buy Local” movement.

And our absolutely wonderful and incredible Etsy marketplace that has helped small businesses everywhere?  The website has a category labelled “local” and many Etsy vendors use that as a tag for self-promotion.

I have no objection to anyone buying whatever they want from wherever it was produced. Your money, your prerogative. But I do have a problem with overusing the word local. And I object to businesses that twist the word into something it is not.

Home-Based Baking at its Best! Home-based bakers everywhere can proudly label their goods local, since they sell their products in their community!

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Chocolatize Your Gingerbread Season

Friday, December 11th, 2015

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The spicy flavor and sturdy texture of gingerbread cookies are a classic part of the holiday season. Even people who don’t usually eat gingerbread cookies, may partake for the season’s sake. And now we have chocolate gingerbread, a flavor that transcends the traditional holiday cookie. We have chocolatized this seasonal treat!

Substitute cocoa for part of the flour, see recipe below.

The cookies can be stored together with no adverse taste issues.

Either use your favorite gingerbread recipe (substitute 1/3 of the flour with cocoa) or use my recipe.

Classic Gingerbread Cookies
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup molasses
1 large egg
5 cups all purpose flour (or 3 1/2 cups flour, 1 1/2 cups cocoa)
2 teaspoons ginger
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cloves (delete cloves for chocolate version)
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Cream butter and sugar, then mix in molasses and egg. Stir dry ingredients together and add to wet. Divide into discs, wrap, and refrigerate several hours or days. Roll out and bake at 375 degrees until done – the cookies will puff and set. The chocolate gingerbread can easily burn, so watch closely.

Home-Based Baking at its Best! This holiday season, treat your customers to something new!

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National Cookie Day

Friday, December 4th, 2015

Just in time for the holidays! Today, December 4, is National Cookie Day. If you haven’t already planned out your holiday trays, start thinking about it now.

Use basic cookies

and colorful holiday designs.

Your customers will appreciate purchasing tasty and memorable holiday gifts.

Home-Based Baking at its Best! Don’t forget your market research. This is a great time to look around at all the new products on the market.

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