ABOUT the BAKERY
Located in Redondo Beach, California, the Beach Cottage Bakery is a micro bakery specializing in sourdough hearth loaves. The bakery is an approved Cottage Food Operator (CFO) with a permit issued by the County of Los Angeles Public Health Department and a Food Handlers license. All products offered are lovingly prepared in a home kitchen.
All bread products baked at the Beach Cottage Bakery are hand made in small batches and slowly fermented using a culture of wild yeast. None of the bread made at the bakery contains any commercial yeast, conditioners or preservatives. All the flour and grains used are organic and all whole-grain flour is freshly stone-ground on the same day the bread is made. All loaves are fermented for a minimum of 16 hours and finally baked in a stone lined oven. To learn more about what sourdough is, how it is made and what the benefits are, please visit my page: Breaducation.
Meet the Baker
Hello! I’m Lisa and I am the baker behind the Beach Cottage Bakery.
Around the time I was finishing high school I vividly remember having a tearful conversation with my mother about the path I would take upon graduation. I told her I didn’t want to go to college but that I would get a job in a restaurant instead because I wanted a career in the food industry. My mother said I could choose to do whatever I wanted, but only after I had got an academic college degree. So I went to college, got a degree in biology, then worked for a few different corporations in the city, but none of my jobs ever felt like a good fit. After several years of struggling to find my path, here I am making steps towards running my own little bakery and I think back to this conversation and realize I have just circled back to where my heart has always been. It appears that I have known all along that cooking, baking and most importantly sharing the fruits of my labor with others is what brings me the greatest pleasure.
What I didn’t realize back then however was that I would become a sourdough baker, only because until a few years ago I didn’t even know what sourdough was! I embarked upon making my first sourdough loaf after discovering that the conventional way that bread is made today results in a bread product that not only has low nutritional value, but also has potentially detrimental health consequences. In contrast, bread made using the process of natural fermentation, the way our ancestors had been doing for around 6000 years, transforms simple ingredients into something that is not only delicious but also highly nutritious: sourdough.
As someone who strongly believes that food should first and foremost provide nourishment, it was upsetting to discover that the bread that had always formed part of my daily diet was not only nutritionally devoid, but also potentially harmful. And once I tasted my first sourdough loaf I was immediately hooked, not only because I knew it was nourishing, but it was worlds apart from the product I had come to know as ‘bread’. It had a completely different smell, different texture, and a much more interesting and complex flavor. It was addictive.
For almost half a century now the memory of crusty hearth loaves made using natural fermentation has been replaced with images of fluffy white loaves of industrially produced sliced bread. I am however excited to see that there is currently a growing movement of small artisanal bakers who are resurrecting the old world methods of bread baking. As well as compromising its quality, the industrialization of food has completely altered our connection to food and to the people who produce it, pushing it towards an abstraction rather than something that connects us to the natural world, to our culture, and to each other. These small bakeries, as well as raising awareness among their communities about the benefits of “slow-bread”, are helping to rebuild some of these connections, and I am so excited about joining this movement through my bread at The Beach Cottage Bakery. Not only do I want to share bread that is good for you made using the freshest flour possible, but I also want to share with you my creativity by offering loaves with a huge variety of flavor combinations that you have likely never tried before using the best ingredients I can find.
From the moment I took a bite out of my first ever loaf, sourdough changed my life. Every morning since, I have woken up looking forward to my slice of bread for breakfast, and it is my hope and dream to be able to share my passion and this joy with members of my community.
I look forward to baking for you.
(To learn more about sourdough and the benefits of naturally fermentation please visit my page: Breaducation).