Stepping through Kneaded Bakery is like setting foot into a country kitchen of old and since it opened two weeks before Christmas, customers have been eagerly snapping up a mouthwatering array of loaves, pies and pasties and other delights.
The concept is Rebecca Weddon’s, who with her husband runs the well-established Chichester company Pink Pig Catering. The bakery is a retail arm of the company, selling a wide range of foods produced at its base in St James Works, St Pancras. For Rebecca, it is a chance to support many of the area’s food producers as well.
“I wanted it to help people become more aware of the food that comes from the local area. I remember there being a butcher up near the Cross and I see all of these small bespoke personal services closing which is a shame.
“My grandma had a bakery when I was a girl and it is something I have always wanted to do and I think Chichester needs a bakery like this. People are a lot more interested in where their food comes from and I think there is a huge market for this.”
Rebecca specialises in artisan breads, made from sourdough. A butcher supplies their venison and meat and makes their sausages while flour is sourced from Petworth. Customers can buy organic milk produced at Goodwood’s Home Farm, which is also used in the takeaway coffee. Produce also comes from Runcton and Funtington and a range of goods from Sussex Valley is also available. The bakery is also listed with organisations including the Real Bread campaign and a free range food website.
“We’ve asked a lot of people about what they want,” said Rebecca. “People don’t mind paying a bit extra for a handcrafted loaf which took two days to make – the quality is much better. The bread has been selling out every day and a lot of people are very excited and love the feel of the shop.”
When designing the shop, Rebecca was also keen to be as green as possible so the bakery is decked out with reclaimed and recycled furniture, and uses low-energy lighting as well as eco-friendly paints.
And as well being environmentally conscious Rebecca also uses Fair Trade coffee from Union which is one step away from the growers.
Looking ahead Rebecca has lots of plans, including an online delivery service, restoring an old bike complete with a basket which will be used to make deliveries around the city.
Eventually, she also wants to run workshops on bread making and cake decorating.
“I’m really excited,” said Rebecca. “I just want everyone to come here and sit at home and enjoy our breads and goodies and buy local produce and support our local economy.”