The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Meeting Baker Derek & Launching New Bakery

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Meeting Baker Derek & Launching New Bakery

In September 2016, I had the opportunity to meet TFL member Derek (yozzause) in Fremantle, Australia. Having developed my baking skills exclusively in Siem Reap, Cambodia, Derek took me to an Italian bakery called "Il Panino" and provided my first, real experience at a proper bakery kitchen.



  • Nick, founder and head baker of Il Panino, with his shop assistant

 

  • Baker Nick and retired baker / baking instructor Derek

 

  • Dough roller machine churning out... rolled dough

 

  • Derek positioning rolled dough onto a couche (baker's cloth)

 

  • 4 deck oven with rotating hearth!

 

  • Baker Nick scoring dough

 

  • Il Panino's bread display

 

After briefly volunteering at Il Panino and accumulating vast amounts of insight, Derek took me to a TAFE institution where he formerly taught. However, on this particular day, we were given permission to teach and assist a student in preparing sweet fruit buns. 

Fast forward 2 weeks, I find myself in Melbourne, Australia, with my partner Jana. Of the bakeries we visited, 2 stood out and filled my heart with inspiration: "Lune Croissanterie" and "Frank's Elsenwood Bakery".



  • a team of bakers at Lune Croissanterie skillfully preparing puff pastries by hand

 

  • Frank's Elsenwood Bakery: a small, humble bakery specializing in German-style sourdough breads

 

After returning to Siem Reap in October 2016, my partner and I decided to collaborate and launch a new bakery: "Bang Bang". (I had previously owned and operated a microbakery called "Zita's Bakery".) The name Bang Bang is derived from the Khmer / Cambodian word "nombang", meaning "bread". With much assistance from our concept designer, our logo was finalized after a month of deliberation---no exaggeration, a month!

Despite our bakery's name, we will offer more than breads. My partner Jana, a trained chef and cake baker, will also contribute her cakes, tarts, and other sweets. 



  • my baking assistant and I (wearing a blue shirt) at a local Sunday farmers market

 

  • our cakes, tarts, and quiches by baker Jana at the farmers market

 

We now have a rented shop space, making slow but steady progress on our layout design while consulting with our interior designer. When our bakery will open, only the future knows. In the meantime, we will continue to bake our breads and cakes for the local farmers market every Sunday. Additionally, until our shop is open, I've put my sourdough breads and doughnuts on hold due to its high maintenance and my need for flexibility with time. I admit, it's driving me insane considering sourdough breads is my passion...


Thank you for reading. If there's any interest, I will continue to post updates on my journey towards opening and operating a retail shop in Cambodia.

Best regards and happy baking,

Mr. Zita
Head Bread Baker
Bang Bang

[f] www.facebook.com/BakeryBangBang
[I] www.instagram.com/BakeryBangBang

 

Comments

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Happy baking 

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Thank you, Dabs! 

PalwithnoovenP's picture
PalwithnoovenP

I wish I could also meet other TFLers. Your display of breads and pastries are so appetizing. Good luck with your new bakery!

Is that a house or a wooden structure of any kind? And under it is where you display your baked goods? I love the look!

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Thank you for your kind words!

Yes, that is in fact a traditional Khmer wooden house (see below). Also, next to us are hanging beds (not traditional) but much appreciated, particularly on a sunny, breezy day. :)

Zita

PalwithnoovenP's picture
PalwithnoovenP

The house is beautiful. I really love those looks, the feel is just unmatched. It looks similar to the houses in the cold mountainous regions here. Houses built with tall posts with an empty space under where daily activities take place like pounding rice, socializing, drinking coffee; the "house" is just for sleeping and sometimes cooking and eating.

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Yes! In the countryside, that's exactly what the locals here do. Most social activities takes place "under" the house. Looks like there's some similarities in Cambodian and Filipino culture. :)

Zita

dosco's picture
dosco

Please keep posting. It's very interesting, and to be honest, I'm a bit jealous!

-Dave

 

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Haha, ok, will do! :) But, hey, don't be too jealous. Opening a bakery / shop expends much time and effort, and requires the ability to work well under pressure on little sleep. Sometimes I'm jealous of people who have weekends! 

Zita

dosco's picture
dosco

lol, that's why I need you to keep posting ... so I can live vicariously through you!!

 

:D

 

-Dave

 

 

yozzause's picture
yozzause

Good to see you finally got pen to paper Zita but you have been a busy boy too. Good luck in your new venture i'm sure you ill only go from strength to strength. I look forward to meeting up with you again sometime whether its here or there., Still lots more for you to see here in Perth on your next visit.  

kindest regards Derek

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Hi Derek!

Great to hear from you! Thank you for your best wishes and, yes, I agree there's plenty more to see in Perth. My time there was perhaps too brief but enough to spark a new vision, a new goal: the pursuit of opening a walk-in bakery.

Take care and please keep in touch. I shall look forward to the day we meet again.

All the best, 

Zita

isand66's picture
isand66

Thanks for sharing your baking adventures in Australia.  I'm so happy you are following your dreams and are getting close to opening up what sounds like an awesome bakery. 

I love your new logo and really think it was well done and thought out.  I look forward to reading more about your new venture and can't wait to see the final place!

Good luck and best regards,

Ian

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Hi Ian! Long time, no read!

Thank you for your kind words and continual support from afar. Much appreciated!

And thank you once again for commenting on our logo with notable positivity. My partner, designers, and I are enthused about the logo. We're quite fond of it for several reasons. Meanings / connotations of the words and visuals in various languages were considered, as well as potential merchandising, different types of packaging and media platforms. So you're correct. It it was really thought out. :)

Cheers and happy baking,

Zita

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

Congrats on your latest venture.  Your breads and other fare look super.  Well done for spending time in real bakeries too, there is nothing like it for gaining real experience and seeing how the processes scale up for volume.

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Thank you!

And you're correct. There's nothing like real experience in a real bakery. My regret is not contacting more bakers in Australia, volunteering and observing their work. But hey, I'll do my best and can always invite other bakers to visit me in Siem Reap. :)

Best wishes,

Zita