Wednesday, October 28, 2009

out of market for the season...

Bronchitis knocked me out of market for much of October, then tendon trouble in my right arm made me realize that I'm out for the season. I don't know if I'll be working Farmer's Market again next year. Thank you to everyone who patronized the booth for the past two seasons.

Friday, October 2, 2009

the sickness continues...

Apologies for anyone that read this post before the edit that thought I'd be at market. I'm ill, and staying in bed this weekend. Wish me well.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

no market for me this weekend...again

I was back at Market for a week, now I'm off again this weekend due to my wife being out of town and me being responsible for the kids.

In flavor news, the Italian Delight has been well received, and the experimental oatmeal molasses appears promising.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

No market for me this weekend.

Due to illness and not wanting to spread it by handling food I'm selling, I'm skipping Market this weekend.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

new flavor-Italian Delight

I have introduced a new flavor called Italian Delight, because it is shorter than Oregano Onion With Garlic Flakes and Salt.

Friday, July 10, 2009

another bagel picture...

Here's another picture sent to me by Aly, one of my regular customers and a darned good photographer.

I'm working on a new flavor combination involving garlic, onion, and basil with an egg wash holding salt and garlic flakes on the top. The taste testers liked it, so I'll probably work it into the rotation in the upcoming weeks. It's not anything really new since I use all the ingredients in other bagel combinations, so this is more like mashing a couple of different bagel flavors together.

I'm also thinking about chocolate chip bagels. I know that with the warm weather it wouldn't be possible to have them out right now, but I can always do up a batch and keep it in the cooler for my taste testers. I'll do up a batch tomorrow, time permitting.

Friday, July 3, 2009

no bagels for this weekend's market...

Obligations at home are preventing me from making it to the Lawrence Farmer's Market this weekend, apologies to anyone hunting for me on Saturday. I should be there the following weekend as usual.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Wow, those went fast.

All of my bagels were sold out at 9:40am yesterday morning. I think that is a record for the 15 dozen I brought, but I'd have to check last year's records to be sure. Thanks to everyone who helped me sell out so early, it gave me a chance to shop at the Farmer's Market and bring home some tomatoes and cucumbers.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bagel Pictures

One of my customers has sent me some wonderful pics of my bagels prepped for eating. So here is one of them, big thanks to Aly for her photographic endeavors!

The weather is forecast for scattered thunderstorms this Saturday, let's hope it stays clear in the morning.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

new mixer cranking out the bagels..

I forgot to post this, but last week I purchased a 10 qt Anvil commercial mixer.  It is a fine machine, and cranks out the bagel dough beautifully.  Unlike the KitchenAid 600 (which is a fine machine, but not made for the amount of baking I do) it is made to handle a big 3.5 lb lump of dough, 12-16 times in a single day every Friday during Farmer's Market season.

Today I'm doing experiments with Lime Basil bagels (tried once before, trying again for better results) at the request of a friend, and I'm also trying challah bagels.  The first batch of challah bagels has shown me that they need a lower bake temp because they are much higher in sugar content than the other bagels, and the outside browns quickly.  I'll play around with them in the future, but doubt that they will become a high demand item.

Friday, June 5, 2009

no market for me this weekend...

I have a commercial mixer on order but it didn't make it to me yet, so no baking today and no market for me tomorrow.  My apologies to the regular customers who usually stop by, I'll be bringing you bagels unless something else delays the arrival of my new mixer this coming week.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

How to Kill a KitchenAid Mixer...

I knew that I was putting quite a strain on my KitchenAid 600 mixer by doing so much bagel dough every week, but I finally killed mine.  With no time to get it fixed, I got a backup mixer.  Which, straight out of the box, couldn't handle the dough like the other mixer did for months.  So back it went to the store (it really couldn't handle dough at all, not good) and now I'm looking at a true commercial mixer, which will probably set me back a grand.

In the near future I'll be trying a new flavor suggested by a friend, Lime Basil.  More on that after the experiment, which will be after I get that mixer upgrade (hopefully before Thursday so I can bake this Friday).

Monday, May 18, 2009

Weekend update...

This weekend I introduced the new apricot bagels, which sold well.  A dreary morning and KU graduation made for a slower morning than usual, but it picked up later.  

I'm always astounded when people tell me that they got to market earlier so they could get to my booth while there was a greater selection of flavors.  I sure wouldn't get up early on the weekend if I wasn't working, so I appreciate it when people actually make that effort.  

Just so anyone who actually visits this blog knows, I won't be at market on Memorial Day weekend due to out of town travel, but I will be there the week after.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Weekend report...

This was a very good weekend.  Since I sold out so fast last weekend, this time I upped production to 16 dozen, which is where I maxed out last year at peak season.  I sold out at 10:30am, half an hour before market close.  I think I need to up the baking by another dozen or so.

On Thursday I received delivery of my oven upgrade, a GE 3 rack convection oven and a single rack regular oven above it.  After a little tweaking, I was able to get the cook time the same in both ovens so I am able to cook 2 dozen bagels at once. This is a vast improvement over my 1 dozen at a time baking in the old oven, and I don't have to rotate pans because of the convection.  This also means that I can get my vast amounts of baking done earlier in the day rather than being up all evening trying to get all the bagels baked.

On a side note, I baked my first batch of madeleines tonight.  They are a lemon cookie baked in pans that give them a shell shape, they have a spongy inside with a delightful taste.  I highly recommend trying them out.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

First Day of Market for me...

Today was the first day that I worked the Farmer's Market this year.  I determined how many bagels to bring by looking at last year's records, but between regular customers and beautiful weather I sold out in 2 hours.  Next week I'll bring many more.

I'm looking at upgrading my home oven to speed up my baking.  I've heard many things about convection ovens, on Monday I'll be looking at all the local appliance stores to see what they have available.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Market begins...

Today was the first of 3 "pre-season" markets, before the May 2nd official opening day.  I'm unfortunately booked for the first couple pre-markets, but will be there in 2 weeks.

Friday, March 20, 2009

New flavors, upcoming Market...

Some more tinkering has lead to the creation of two flavors that will occasionally get rotated in, walnut spice and basil onion.  The rosemary onion also got approval from the taste testers, so it will be appearing in April.  

The wonderful success from last year's Lawrence Farmers Market has lead me to hope for some improvements for the baking process for this year.  This includes both replacing my home oven with a convection oven so I can bake more bagels faster, and the eventual purchase of a larger mixer (which although large at 8 quarts, is still tiny by industrial standards).  Not only are these shiny objects that make the kitchen look more impressive, but they would hopefully cut down on the time I spend in the kitchen on Friday to bring you the bagel goodness on Saturday.  

Friday, February 13, 2009

New flavor in the works...

I'm working on a new flavor, rosemary onion.  So far the taste tests have received good reviews, now it's a matter of seeing if it's better with garlic or should remain as is.

Only about a month and a half until the opening of the Lawrence Farmer's Market.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Happy New Years

Welcome to 2009! So far this year I've been waiting a couple of weeks for my KitchenAid mixer to get fixed, and started figuring out startup costs for the upcoming Farmer's Market season. The good news is that there will be much less startup cost since I purchased most physical booth supplies last year (canopy, table, etc), the irritating news is that I now know that I will need to set aside an equipment budget for 2009. It should be no surprise that making several hundred pounds of dough in 6 months will put a strain on a KitchenAid mixer, but and industrial mixer is not in my foreseeable future both money and space wise.

Opening day of the Market is I believe May 2nd, see you then.