Figuring out Salty Roan Bakehouse prospects’ favourite pastry filling is difficult for proprietor Chelsie Herje since opening in Abilene.
“To date, we have offered out of all the pieces we have supplied,” Herje mentioned.
Along with Danishes and croissants, the bakery that opened March 14 at 4150 S. Danville Drive makes a speciality of artisan breads, cream puffs and different French-European pastries. Extra candy temptations embody cookies, scones, sticky buns, cinnamon rolls and miniature pies and cheesecakes.
“We hand make all the pieces … we make our personal sauces and our personal fillings and all the pieces,” Herje mentioned.
Herje (pronounced Her-Gee) described her enterprise as an upscale bakery with gadgets past “the American bakery thought of pies, muffins and cupcakes.” Drinks embody espresso drinks, tea and bottled choices.
“I am making an attempt to supply one thing that they cannot get anyplace else in Abilene,” she mentioned.
Savory gadgets, too
Baked items in ornamental containers and on tiered shows organized as if by an inside designer tempt prospects as they enter.
The goodies may be packaged to go or loved within the close by seating space. A drive-up window is within the works.
Hours are 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays by Saturdays.
Savory breakfast decisions embody quiches, akin to feta and spinach or potato and bacon, and ham and béchamel croissants.
“Come summertime, we’ll swap up and do a Caprese quiche. It is actually mild and enjoyable and tremendous scrumptious,” Herje mentioned.
Caprese is an Italian salad with layers of sliced Mozzarella cheese and tomatoes accented with contemporary basil, salt and olive oil or balsamic vinegar.
Lunch choices had been added lately, together with quinoa salad and hen salad on a croissant or lettuce.
Began in Buffalo Hole
The flexibility to rotate and increase the menu is likely one of the causes Herje moved her operation that began in a smaller area in Buffalo Hole in October 2017.
Whereas she loved the quaint location and the Buffalo Hole vibe, the restricted work and eating area and lighter foot visitors necessitated a easy, fundamental menu, Herje mentioned.
“We’re capable of have enjoyable with extra and totally different flavors,” she mentioned in regards to the new spot.
Meaning enjoying with flavors, such because the current churro eclairs with a cinnamon-chocolate filling and the coconut-and-lime cream puffs.
Count on ventures with the bread flavors, too.
“Actually, we are able to do something. I’ve an entire listing of issues that I need to do,” she mentioned.
She rattled off present specialties: baguettes, sourdough, winter wheat with three seeds and Texas loaf with pepper jack and cheddar cheese, jalapenos and purple bell peppers. Latest additions are olive bread and challah.
“I actually get pleasure from bread probably the most. I really like the shaping and the approach. I really feel like some days is a brand new day with bread, and so it is difficult and it is actually enjoyable,” Herje mentioned.
“After which. after all, I like to eat it so it is rewarding on the finish,” she added with amusing.
As she talked within the new bakery’s kitchen, she and an worker labored at a big desk in the course of the room to chop triangles from flat sheets of laminated dough and roll them into croissants.
Laminated dough refers back to the strategy of folding butter into dough a number of occasions for a pastry that has a lightweight, ethereal inside after baking.
“They are saying baking is a science, and I did not perceive it till you get into it, and it’s very true,” Herje mentioned.
Her kitchen is a tasty lab, with the bakery going by a few 150 kilos of butter and 800-1,000 kilos of flour every week, she mentioned.
She additionally presents gluten-free choices, entertains requests for customized orders and wholesales baked items to different eating places.
A baker’s journey
Baking has been a ardour for Herje since childhood spent on a dairy farm in Kansas.
She perfected her abilities in artisan breads, laminated dough and different pastries on the San Francisco Baking Institute.
Coming to Texas was a matter of religion for Herje and her husband, Bart.
“After my husband and I obtained married proper after we graduated, we moved to Fort Value. He went to seminary there, and we simply sort of made a tour of Texas,” she mentioned.
They settled in Brownwood for 9 years earlier than returning seven years in the past to Kansas.
Their second journey in Texas began 5 years in the past by the use of a mission journey in Mexico, the place they met Norman and Angel Poorman. The Poormans personal Camp Barkeley Coaching and Equipping Middle, an apostolic occasion complicated southwest of Abilene that provides coaching, retreats and facility leases.
“They had been in search of a media supervisor and somebody to assist with hospitality and various things, and we had been wanting to come back again to Texas. We mentioned, ‘Okay, we’ll transfer again,'” Herje mentioned.
Her long-term aspiration was to personal a bakery. Credit score for the title goes to Eins, brief for Einstein, a strawberry roam who was “extra like a pet. He was simply so variety and delicate,” Herje mentioned.
Eins additionally was dependable.
Bart “would at all times say, ‘Man, he is simply salty.’ You’ll be able to put him out to pasture and depart him on the market and convey him in within the spring and he’ll go work cattle and get the job performed,” Herje mentioned.
The horse, who died, impressed Bart to call his video advertising firm Salty Roan.
“Once we had been naming the bakery, I simply could not determine what I wished to do. And I mentioned ‘Effectively, I am simply gonna take your title there. Then all people will hear about all the pieces,'” Herje mentioned.
Bart’s skilled eye is clear within the bakery’s social media posts that present the craftsmanship concerned in making pastries and breads virtually too fairly to eat.
He is even shared on a current Fb put up methods to make the “off-the-menu” Bart’s Latte with vanilla, honey and cinnamon frothed in oak milk and likewise dusted on high. The crowning glory? A dunk of his finger into the combination on the finish.
“I simply made that 10 occasions sweeter for you,” Bart says within the video after he sucks the espresso foam off his finger.
Good luck getting the common bakery baristas to make that.
However that sense of family-friendly whimsy is what makes Salty Roan Bakehouse comfy because it showcases European-inspired baked items. The bakery gadgets and environment are Herje’s not-so-secret recipe for conveying good feelings.
“I like to bake, and I like to create issues, however I additionally love serving individuals and simply seeing them so pleased. Meals is a language, and in order that simply brings me a variety of pleasure, too,” Herje mentioned.
Laura Gutschke is a common task reporter and meals columnist and manages on-line content material for the Reporter-Information. When you respect regionally pushed information, you possibly can assist native journalists with a digital subscription to ReporterNews.com.