‘I work in a bakery – there’s one item bakers would never consider eating’

Bakeries come in many different forms in the UK with major chains like Greggs dominating the market.

Perhaps the most exciting kind, however, are traditional artisan bakeries that produce baked goods in limited quantities, mostly using traditional methods and natural ingredients.

This makes freshly baked loaves of bread, cakes and buns even harder to get hold of, which according to one baker, is part of their unique charm.

Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk Aidan Monks, co-owner of Lovingly Artisan Bakery revealed secrets of the £5 billion trade which makes up a large sector of the UK food industry.

One of his biggest revelations was that the bakery operation starts way before the crack of dawn, in his case, at 2am.

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Aidan explained: “We’re a 24-hour operation. A new morning team arrives at 2am, allowing the evening team to head home for some well-earned sleep.

“Many don’t realise that early mornings are a magical time; full of beautiful sunrises and big skies, the perfect backdrop to enjoy a croissant and the first brew of the day.”

When it comes to exactly what’s baked first, the expert unveiled that the week does in fact start on a Monday, when “everything begins again”.

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Aidan continued: “Pastries, sourdoughs, Focaccia, and ciabattas are all baked fresh throughout the course of the day. The fragrance wafts through the bakery doors, drawing passersby into the bakery shop; which is why we always say if the bakery doors are open, we’re open. The only day of oven rest is Sunday, which is a treasured family day.”

But with such an enticing display of baked goods and aromas to entice customers, it’s important to time things right to bag the freshest produce.

The artisan baker said: “The best time of day for choice, to secure your supply of pastries and loaves is first thing in the morning. We bake over 15 styles of sourdoughs.

“If you want to explore something different from the range we offer, you need to make it your mission to head over to the bakery before lunch. Light, fluffy Focaccia, warm ciabatta, heavenly Rugbrod – pure bread bliss.”

He claimed that loaves made with ancient grains take the prize as the “most sought after” items, perhaps because they’re so versatile for breakfast, lunch and evening suppers.

That said, there is one item you’d never catch a baking professional reaching for on any bakery shelf – particularly those in supermarkets.

Aiden revealed: “The one item most artisan bakers would never consider eating is an ultra-processed white sliced loaf, with its list of ingredients as long as your arm!

“In my opinion, organic grains are the secret to flavour and goodness; whilst the secret to nutritious bread and a healthy gut is real sourdough, slowly fermented, created with just three magical ingredients: flour, salt and water.”

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