The Home Stretch

Today the final batch of Dresdner Stollen  was baked for this Holiday Season. That's it. That's all she wrote. Now, to some this may seem a bit early to be wrapping up any part of our Christmas production. But the reality is that  there are only 9 more days until Christmas, and if you take into account that two of those days, Sunday and Monday, December 18 and 19, the bakery is closed, then there are really only 7 more production days left. And as we get closer and closer to the final days before Christmas, the pace quickens, especially in the retail store, to the point where there aren't enough hours in the day to keep up with customer demands. Factor in as well that most of the products we make, whether for the holidays or, really, for any day, involve very complicated recipes and methods, then it becomes clear that without long-range planning and strategy, the magic of the Christmas Bakery just couldn't happen.

So, with all that in mind, the final Stollen is baked and in the books. We still have inventory of all four of our Stollen varieties, but if you wait too long, your choices will become limited.

The same applies to all of our Holiday specialties. Going forward, once the inventories are exhausted, that's it until next year. So, once again, place your orders soon so that we can reserve any specialty item that you really want to have for Christmas. All of our cookies, whether the standard tea cookies or the special Christmas cookies will keep very well through the New Year. Our Stollen will keep into January without exception. Our focus for the remaining seven days will be on cakes, tortes, desserts and all of our yeasted breads and breakfast pastries. Indeed, our focus going forward will be on meeting our customer orders, whether for Christmas parties or for Christmas Eve. The camel is about to pass through the needle's eye. It is a busy and exciting time at the bakery, seasoned for me, as it is every year, with a large dose of tread. This is why, since before Thanksgiving really,  I am fond of asking "Is it January yet?"

Today we introduced of first Bûche de Noël of the season. The main cake is a yellow roulade brushed with rum and filled with chocolate butter cream. The exterior of the 'log' is banded with chocolate butter cream and decorated with a kitchen sink worth of accessories: a marzipan elf, gingerbread men, Spekulatius leaves, butter cookie stars and moons, chocolate pine cones and walnuts, and meringue mushrooms. All of it is attacked with a blizzard of powder sugar. It is another example of what I like to call a 'pull-apart-dessert." Eating the Bûche is a deconstructive process more akin to demolition. A lot of fun for young and old.

There will be some Bûche available for walk-in customers, but to be sure there will be one for you at Christmas, please order ahead.

Some other items which make an appearance this weekend and complete our bite-sized Holiday Specialties are:

  • Meringue Mushrooms, light,airy and crunch meringue sandwiched together with dark chocolate

  • Black & White Cookies: our classic vanilla and chocolate tea cookie dough, painstakingly combined into checkered squares. Buttery and not too sweet.

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Bakery Normand
192 Main Street
Northampton, MA 01060

Tuesday to Saturday, 7:30am-5:30pm

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