The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Arts and Crafts Market # 6

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Mebake's picture
Mebake

Arts and Crafts Market # 6

Hi,

It has been a while since i last posted. I've been away for a 3 week "vacation", so i missed June's crafts market in Dubai. I've returned, though, and began baking for the July Market and my lone client. 

I chose to bake the fastest selling breads: Hamelman's roasted garlic bread, and Olive levain. The third variety is 5 grain Rye sourdough also from Hamelman. I do realize i have to break free from Hamelman's book for the Market bread, and start using recipes of my own. 

The Market started well, with a great footfall gaining momentum as the day approached 12:00 noon, the beginning of the Market in a lazy shopping mall. My first client was my neighbor vendor, who bought olive bread. Slowly but surely,  i had clients snatching away my breads and soon i was sold out in 3 hours. Boy, as exciting as that was, it was boring to stand behind an empty table for the next 4 hours (I'm fasting - mind you). I gave away my business card along with a brochure on the benefits of Artisan bread. I wasn't alone in this (although i admit i should have baked more, but such is the limitations of my 60 cm width oven), my Brit neighbor, has also sold out her entire stock of vegan pastry in 3 hours. The market grew vibrant by late afternoon, much to my regrets, as i sat there waiting for the Market to end. 

So, as dusk drew near, I packed and head home for breakfast. I knew i had to buy me a larger oven.

As to my plans for bakery, I've booked a class on "basic food hygiene" tomorrow. My next step will be to try to seek an apprenticeship, or a temporary job in a renowned bakery. An approved food hygiene lesson along with a medical checkup is a requirement in the food industry here. 

Wish me luck!

Khalid

 

Comments

varda's picture
varda

That's me wishing you luck.   I'm sure it will go well.  -Varda

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thank you so much, Varda.

Best of luck to you too.

 

Kiseger's picture
Kiseger

Not surprised they sold out! Best best best luck for the course!

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Kieseger!

Khalid

yozzause's picture
yozzause

Hi There Khalid, you can never quite tell how markets are going to go im sure its a better feeling  seeing evertything sold rather than taking a whole load home with you. What you need is a contingency plan some thing to keep you busy  and the public interested in having a look at you, perhaps a laptop showing you hard at work making bread. or perhaps some dough that you could be moulding plaiting or just playing with, or do a small hand mix even if it is not going to get baked off, you get one person stopped looking before long you have a crowd, then just work the crowd tell them what you are doing  tell them you will be at the next market.

When i was working and running one of the first hotbread shops here in Perth if people wanted to order bread  they would pay for it, it got to a point where i was having to tell the counter staff  that certain breads  were sold out  a day prior to baking, Now thats a great feeling with the money already in the till. Perhaps you could  consider offering a discount for pre ordered bread, you would have their money for a month and have a better idea of what was required for the day.

It's funny that after i left the hot bread shop,  i went back a year or so later  to do a nights work for the incumbent baker, his order book had only 3 or 4 entries, how quickly things change.

What are shop rents like in Dubai?

      

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Hi, Derek

Good ideas there.A workshop is definitely a worthy idea, but i'm not inclined towards it. Perhaps the laptop slideshow? 

The concept of Pre-ordering would be worthwhile if i had an oven with larger capacity; I'm scrambling to bake for the market as it is. I'll see what i can do.

Depending on location, commercial Rents in Dubai can be anything between 50dhs. (15US$) , and 1000 Dhs. (250US$) per square feet. 

Thanks for sharing some ideas with us, Derek.

Khalid

CAphyl's picture
CAphyl

Khalid:  So glad you sold out of those fantastic breads.  I love olives, so I am going to have to make an olive bread soon. Your breads look perfect and so yummy. Please keep us up-to-date on how it is going for you.  All the best,  Phyllis

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Phyllis

I will. 

Note: Be picky with olives. Bad olives can ruin the flavor of a whole batch of dough. 

Best,

Khalid

 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

the even more boring don't sell it all in 7 hours is way past being over for you!  3 hours - Wow! Well done and

Happy Baking Khalid. 

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks! I need a bigger oven, soon.

Khalid

mcs's picture
mcs

Very nice job and I'm happy to hear that your eager customers snatched up all of the loaves.  :)

-Mark

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Mark.

All the best,

Khalid

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Mark !  i learned alot from you ;)

All the best,

Khalid

isand66's picture
isand66

So happy you sold out Khalid and I'm sure next time you will figure out a better plan to either bring more product with you or do a demo.  Good luck with your apprenticeship search and classes.

Hope you enjoyed your well deserved vacation.

Regards,
Ian

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks for the kind compliments and well wishes, Ian.

The 2 hour hygiene lesson is over. I'm waiting for the certificate.

best wishes,

Khalid

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

Khalid,

I've got a question for you -- why do you have to break away from Hammelman and develop your own recipes if what you are making is selling so well?  I wouldn't discourage you from making your own formulas, but there is certainly no need to reinvent the wheel unless your customers demand something different.

As long as you are staying at the market for hours on end with no bread to sell, would you consider selling sourdough starter and instructions on how to maintain the starter, along with one of your more basic breads?  I know you don't want people making their own bread as a general matter (I haven't bought a loaf of bread for 10 months now),  but the majority of people don't have the time to bake bread regularly -- they may,  however, pay you decent money for the opportunity to try and bake a loaf at home.

Package it right and maybe you can sell the starter for as much or more than you sell a loaf of bread, at considerably more profit and considerably less time invested.

Mebake's picture
Mebake

I love to experiment, which is why i grow restless when i follow a recipe for too long.

You've got some novel ideas. I never thought of selling my stater, nor tutoring on bread making. There is some great potential in this.

Many thanks for your contribution, David.

All the best,

Khalid

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

Hope it works out!