This first part of the Baking Studio story is made in partnership with my friends at Ballingslöv Falkenberg.
About two months after baking my first sourdough loaf, I decided that this craft was something I’d be doing for the rest of my days. I find such joy and passion on the creation of bread and other goods and even more in sharing it with others. The thought has grown in to something more than a hobby over the last years, and the need to build a career from a passion.
About 6 months ago now, I announced on my Instagram channel that I’d be transforming my garage and adjacent rooms in to a baking studio. From here I will explore the depths of all things made from dough, using sustainable methods and ingredients.
I will produce and sell a dynamic theme based and exclusive line of bread products, locally sourced and for pick up at the studio.
From here I will teach my insights of the craft on site to those hungry students willing to learn. The very best bread that’s not only a pleasure to watch, but also healthy for you and our planet. My mission and drive are to inspire people on this planet to change their view on bread consumption and the choices that comes with making it. Now I needed a suitable locale to support this call!
Finding the right partner
From the start it became clear to me that the studio itself needed to be as inspiring and lust bearing as the mission and products. I needed it to become as grand as my ambitions! A conceptual baking showroom mixed with a design kitchen and learning center. Pretty soon I realized that I would need help achieving this from those who can put dreams to paper and paper to reality made of wood, stone and electronics (and I’m sure a lot of other material).
I believe in a sustainable approach when it comes to doing business, and one part of this is finding a way to partner up to the local suppliers with shared values. When teamed up the businesses becomes something greater for the community! I contacted a local supplier of kitchen and storage solutions whose quality in products would match that of my own. Mats and Ingemar at Ballingslöv in Falkenberg, responded to my request and we started planning the Baking Studio together at their shop just a 5 minutes bike ride from our house (could it get more local?).
Mats drew up the plans after taking measurements during a Christmas visit. Just before this we had finished tiling a new floor from Italian stone, and a breathtaking white tiled wall with a French bistro feel to it, by the old garage windows. Also, we put up new inner walls and repainted the ceiling. A lot of hard and rewarding work!
During the coming months, we (my wife Caroline and I) had several meetings at Ballingslöv, and with other partners, to choose the right solutions for the cause and solve problems.
I’m very happy to say that in May, the first shipment of carpentry arrived. Mats also wanted to see it through completely, and being a trained carpenter at origin, he led the installments on site. These pictures show you the progress half way and where we’re at as I write. The craftsmanship of this carpentry is just something else. Robust and elegant. Practical with high quality and easy to clean (Which I’ll probably do thoroughly each day)!
The next big steps are finishing electrical work, installing the storage at the entrance, putting in the ovens, coolers, freezers, slab, and finally the stone work surfaces.
I’ll begin wrapping up this first part of this series with a quick walk through of my choices in machinery. As the plans and pictures might have already spoiled, I’ll be using six high end electrical home ovens in this studio. The aim is to produce a limited line of exclusive goods, and these ovens will absolutely fill that need and more! Also, I’m so looking forward to the genuine and exclusive home environment feeling it brings to the studio, for the upcoming courses and educational videos.
My take is this: If you can bake great bread in a home oven, you can master it in any type of commercial oven. So, these courses will be for the pros as well. Mats even drew this unique furniture to hold the 6 ovens, which will make it look like one sublime unit in the end.
For this very same reason I’m choosing to work with a line of domestic coolers and freezers. For the surfaces I’ve chosen a very versatile and premium feeling composite stone. And finally, when it comes to the mixer… I haven’t quite been able to find the right one. Or afford the one I really wish to acquire – The twin arm mixer. It seems as though I might be able to loan a table mixer of the same type of engineering (Miss Baker) during this summer.
In part 2 of this series I’ll show you these machines installed and talk more about those choices! Also, here’s finally a picture of my partners at Ballingslöv in Falkenberg, holding my bread. Among them they have over 60 years of experience in the business so I’m in safe hands listening to their recommendations and solutions. Without their passion, interest and faith, a studio of this unique kind would not have been possible! They also introduced me to other partnerships significant to build this dream studio, which I’ll tell you more about shortly.
Link to Ballingslöv Falkenberg (swedish)
Link to Ballingslöv central site (Swedish)