The Great Stroud Bake Off

As the new series of Great British Bake Off is back on our screens this autumn, we look at the Master Bakers that can be found at Stroud Farmers’ Market…

Fair & Square Brownies: Sarah Jaskowska makes these deliciously indulgent gluten-free brownies using Fairtrade and locally produced and sourced ingredients. Flavours include Cheesecake, Salted Caramel, Raspberry, and Cardamom & Pistachio as well as seasonal variations. The brownies have won a Great Taste Award and a Gold Fairtrade Business Award.

Jack Bakes: it was when cake-maker Sarah ‘Jack’ Jackaman turned vegan in 2013 that Jack Bakes was created as a way of devising a recipe that could allow her to still enjoy cakes that were light, gooey and moist but without the eggs or dairy. She now has a collection of dairy and gluten-free goodies that include Bakewell tarts, chocolate, carrot, and coffee cakes, cookies and biscotti, fulfilling her intention that everyone should be able to enjoy cake!

Nom Nom Cupcakery: the exquisite-looking cupcakes and bakes at this delightful stall are all lovingly handmade and iced by Emily Pegler. They really do look almost too good to eat. Almost… however, the range of inventive flavours are just too tempting to hold back on – Malteser, banoffee, raspberry & coconut, chocolate orange – there’s even a vegan Victoria sponge cupcake!

The Artisan Baker: it’s not just award-winning bread that Ori Hellerstein bakes every Saturday for Stroud Farmers’ Market, it’s gorgeous chocolates, fudges and truffles too. Regular market goers will already be familiar with some of Ori’s outstanding loaves, from the six-seeded Nelson loaf to the Painswick loaf with its hint of Earl Grey to the tasty gluten-free loaf, but this week, how about satisfying your sweet tooth too?

Studio Pastry: baking for one stall isn’t enough for master baker, Naomi Walker, who runs both her pasty stall every week and the Farmers’ Market café every other week. Pasties include traditional beef as well as vegetarian, vegan and seasonal fillings, all wrapped up in delicious buttery pastry. For something sweet, take five minutes to enjoy the hustle and bustle of the market while enjoying one of Naomi’s legendary cakes – fennel seed and salt flapjacks, salted caramel brownies, sticky dark gingerbread or rhubarb meringue cake – they’re just too hard to resist!

La Parisienne: if you’re a fan of traditional French breads and patisseries then come and say hello to Graham who can introduce you to some of the finest French baking this side of the channel. Delicious crusty loaves sit alongside croissants, pains au chocolat, fruit tarts and éclairs as well as other French favourites. Many of the breads are made with sourdough to give them that fantastic depth of flavour, and they’re all baked using 100% natural ingredients.

Hobbs House Bakery: Tom Herbert of the Fabulous Baker Brothers fame has quite a following for his breads and brings a great range of sourdoughs, seeded, organic, overnight and now an award-winning gluten free loaf to the market every Saturday. Hobbs sells around 300 loaves a week at the market including best-sellers such as the Sherston, the five-seed spelt and the sourdough rye. There’s also a mouth-watering range of sweet bakes too, including croissants, fruit tarts and Bakewells.

Hetty’s Tea Party: it was the encouragement of friends that gave home baker Hetty the encouragement to set up her award-winning cake business. Offering a range of yummy cakes and bakes, including three Great Taste Award-winning brownies (cheesecake, classic fudge and salted caramel), Hetty now employees three staff and sells her bakes at Gloucester Services as well as the Farmers’ Market.