Slow Rise Bakery is a home business which allows me to do two things I love - make food and spend time with my family. Baking out of our home allows us to balance work with home life, make honest products that have value for the money and make something that the family feels good about eating. Since 2004 I've been home (not always awake) when the kids leave for school in the morning and when they get home and go to bed - something that wasn't possible when I worked in restaurant kitchens. Hopefully, I'm more a part of their lives.
I originally learned to make bread so I could teach baking to the kids at a residential treatment program in California. Years later, while making bread at the White Dog Cafe, I noticed how much bread one could turn out in a small area. When my wife and I decided to spend more time together as a family, we moved into this house in Lancaster and luckily the basement was large enough for a small bakery. I couldn't buy a loaf of bread locally that I wanted to eat and that was all the marketing research we needed.
We use as many organic ingredients as is practical and no preservatives. We shape by hand and follow artisan standards for ingredients, slow dough development and labeling. Our breads contain a high percentage of fiber providing a fiber/carbohydrate ratio that is healthier than commercial bread. Most of our breads do not contain oil which many bakeries use to mask their lack of flavor and keeping qualities.
Slow Rise breads keep without preservatives through the use of either sourdough or long slow fermentation. The result is a simple bread that provides a welcome alternative to today's chemically raised breads.
Originally this was a one man business but over time referrals from the local Church World Service organization have allowed us to make more bread without losing too much sleep. We've had helpers who speak English, French, Swahili, Bhutanese, Thai, Uzbeki, Russian, Turkish, Spanish, Somali, Nepali and Hindi. Providing a positive work environment for people has become another reason to keep baking.