Da Bara Bakery
Da Bara Bakery supply Fifteen Cornwall with the fantastic focaccia, ciabatta, wholewheat and malted loaves that are served in the restaurant. But in addition to bread, they also produce a mouthwatering selection of cakes and pastries; everything from traditional Paris Brest to Eccles Cakes and their famous Cinnamon Buns. Beth Druce chatted with Ben to get the lowdown on Cornwall’s premier baker boys.
How did you get into baking? We have always been massively into all types of food and cookery and a pastime of ours is attempting to recreate our favourite edibles! We soon discovered bread was one of the more elusive skills and our natural sibling rivalry encouraged us to persevere, striving to make the perfect loaf (or at least a better one than the other had created). I was hooked and before long baking regularly for family and friends. Tim was working for Hotel Tresanton in St Mawes at the time, and they agreed to let us use the kitchen overnight at the weekends to bake more to sell, hence Da Bara was born!
Any bakers that you are inspired by? I don’t have a particular favourite in the baking world but I am inspired by all the others, like us, who go to work every day for the love of the craft and take pride in every loaf that leaves the bakery.
What change have you seen in the industry since you started? We haven’t been baking all that long, but there was already a growing interest in good, honest additive free bread when we started. I think we caught the wave there as the popularity of good bread has gone through the roof since then.
If you were baking something for an important person in your life, what would it be? I’m currently baking a wacky birthday layer cake for my wife and daughter’s birthdays this week. One of my favourite baked things is a Gateau Opera, but any kind of baking makes the perfect gift.
Any tips for the inspiring home baker? My best tips for the aspiring home baker would be to be patient. Often, when a recipe says leave for an hour its not actually long enough. Knowing when a dough is just right comes with practice and repetition. And be gentle – you’ve waited a long time for that dough to rise, don’t bash it all straight out again!
Do you watch The Great British Bake Off? Do I watch bake off?! I have caught small snippets of it and I saw some of this year’s final, but if Paul Hollywood came to our place and poked his finger into the middle of one of our loaves, I wouldn’t be responsible for my actions!