Bakery Tour: Part One
Driving by our unassuming little building, you probably wouldn't imagine that it is very impressive at all. However, we have maximized time and again every inch of space that this little gem holds. With our newest transition I feel like we have finally nailed the set up and it has such a great flow to it. Ask my Dad and husband how many times things have moved things around in here and I guarantee they couldn't even remember at this point, let alone the countless hours of the actual process. If you look closely in the back there are nail and screw holes literally everywhere. Shelves have been put up, used, moved, holes filled, shelves moved again and then again. All the while adapting to the newest equipment that enters the doors.
This is a look at the back of the bakery in the main production area most of which you cannot see from the front. The long table is the newest addition and has been such a game changer giving us more workspace and a place underneath to finally fit all of the ingredient bins that had previously been sprinkled all around the building. This work space allows up to three people to work at one time and we put it to good use a couple months ago churning out over 1800 chocolate chip cookies in just about 6 hours.
The machine you see in the back corner is our dough sheeter. It is our right hand man. We prep the dough, feed it through the machine and it sends it beautifully out the other end all the same thickness ready for us to hand cut every cookie that goes out the door. It is a lifesaver and arm saver for sure. The front corner is our main mixer. A 30 qt that can whip up large batches of just about anything. It's power is amazing!
Lastly meet our oven! This beauty is relatively new to us arriving just last Spring. I wasn't really looking for a new oven. I didn't realize we even really could use it. Before this one, we had a single unit and looking back it was becoming tricky to get all of the product through the oven. In any case, my husband got a text message that a mutual acquaintance had some bakery equipment and we immediately jumped in the car to go look at it. NEVER in a million years did I think I could afford something as spectacular as this as I just don't do debt. But this fell in my lap at a price that I could not turn away and now she's all mine. If you're wondering how in the heck we actually get the equipment IN the building, well my Dad is very handy and the one wall at the end of the building is actually removable. We literally take the wall out, run the equipment in and put the wall back, voila! We did run into one other snag with the oven though. It was about 2 inches too wide to fit through the door to get into the back of the bakery. Again, nothing we haven't been through before...where there's a will, there's a way! (and usually a saw!) Another quick project that turned into a few hours, (Sorry Dad and Chris, again) and we have this amazing machine at our fingertips. It truly has been instrumental in allowing us to produce more product than I ever imagined. We now have the capacity to bake 240 sugar cookies in just 8 minutes. I know it's so cliche, but really the most amazing opportunities, items, and happenings come along when you are not even looking for them!