Diane Mejia, owner and pastry chef of Mindful Baking, developed her specialty baking skills in pastry school. During this time, she discovered she was gluten and lactose intolerant. Instead of giving up on her flour-filled dreams, she decided to take the task of baking gluten-free and vegan goods.
Mindful Baking has been a vendor at the Loyola Farmers Market for three years, but their business started from humble beginnings. Diane and her business partner Kent Bridgeman first catered to their family and friends. Then, their business gained momentum when they supplied specialty baked goods to small parties. Eventually, they became a part of Now We’re Cookin’ Kitchen’s Food Incubator Program. The program focuses on providing the necessary resources for local food entrepreneurs. These resources include classes, networking opportunities, and of course, a kitchen. Fast forward to 2016, Mindful Baking now operates in a kitchen at The Growling Rabbit.
The location of their business is crucial to why they love the market. As The Growling Rabbit is ten minutes away from the market, Diane and Kent believe the best part of the market is getting to play an active role in the community, especially with customers that are vegan or have Celiac’s Disease. It gives them comfort knowing that they are making their customers happy with baked goods that don’t taste like cardboard.
When it comes to fan favorite baked goods, Kent believes, “It tends to vary. But at the moment, people are really in love with our S’more Brownie and our Sourdough Bread.” Kent agrees with his customers because the Sourdough Bread is a favorite of his too. Here is Mindful Baking’s favorite way to prepare their Sourdough Bread:
- Slice up our Sourdough Bread and place it on a baking tray
- Add a little marinara or spaghetti sauce on top
- Sprinkle a little vegan cheese on top, plus mushrooms or your favorite veggies
- Throw it in the oven on 400 degrees for ten minutes or until cheese is melted