Many of us have experienced bouts of unemployment, but most of us probably didn’t spend that time learning a new trade. Amanda Bowers of Baker Baker lived in Italy when her husband was in the Navy, but she wasn’t permitted to work. One day she opened up the Gourmet Magazine Cookbook, and before she knew it, she had baked her way through the whole cookbook. “I may not have done it right,” Amanda said, “But I did it my way.”
Amanda was no stranger to baking- her mother and grandmother taught her how to bake as a child. And when she returned to the U.S., she worked at some bakeries in Gainesville to gain more experience, which went well until her son was born. The early morning bakery hours were just too much for a new mom. “I thought I could give up baking, but I just couldn’t,” Amanda said.
But the Cottage Food Law allowed her to start baking at home, and she became a vendor at the Haile Farmers Market and sold her goods wholesale to establishments around town. Encouraged by her success, she teamed up with Tree City Coffee to buy a certified kitchen to start upping her production.
These days the Baker Baker table is spread full of croissants, sweet breads, brownies, lemon bars and other treats. Not sure what to buy? Amanda’s kids know best-- the like the chocolate cake and the cringles.
On certain Saturdays you might even find some local treats, because Amanda likes to use ingredients from the farmers market in her baking, like pineapple for pineapple upsidedown cake or carrots for carrot cake. “That’s what gets me really excited,” said Amanda, “To get food from the market and bring it back to market as baked goods”