If you’ve ever walked into our Brockton store during the lunch hour, you’ve probably seen Chris White in the back of the café, taking orders, prepping food and keeping the kitchen running at its best. The café is the newest addition to White’s Bakery, offering a full menu of grab-and-go foods. These offerings include soups for an eager lunch crowd, excellent made-to-order specialties like the turkey avocado sandwich, Mediterranean chicken paninis, and specialty salads. From 11am to 2pm Monday through Saturday, the café is bustling with happy regulars and curious newcomers alike.
When asked what makes the café so successful, Chris remarks, “we don’t do anything fancy. We just do the basics really well here.” Just like with the bakery, the café at White’s uses quality ingredients, attention to detail, and appealing recipes as the foundation for serving consistently satisfying and delicious food. With a menu that often incorporates seasonal items, like the Fall Crunch (shaved brussel sprouts, granny smith apples, craisins, cabbage, carrots, toasted pecans, maple dressing) and Sweet Potato Torte, there is always something new to try and enjoy.
Like his siblings, Chris has been part of the bakery his entire life. Five years ago, he started working in the café kitchen, where he has found a real calling. The café, he believes, has a lot to offer. “Everyone knows White’s as a great bakery. The café is our ‘newest’ endeavor. I think it complements the bakery well,” he says. “We serve food that appeals to everyone. It’s very good quality, fresh food that’s not too fancy. The café hours create a buzz in the bakery. Customers come in, grab some lunch, then head to the bakery and grab some dessert.”
Adding the café has made the White’s Brockton store a one-stop shop. It’s now so easy to pop in for a bite of lunch, pick up a loaf of artisan bread and one of our hearty grab and go dinner entrees (all you need to do is reheat - how easy is that!?), and even get some pasta salad or other savory bites for weekend entertaining. The café also offers catered items that can be ordered for special occasions, including sandwich platters, appetizers, salads, and dinner entrees like lasagna and sausage cacciatore.
“Our Hingham and Mansfield locations offer a slightly smaller selection of our lunch and grab-and-go dinner offerings. If we had the space there, we would love to put a café in these locations, too. Customers ask us all the time.” In the meantime, plans are underway to expand the seating at the Brockton location, giving more customers the opportunity to order, sit and stay for a bit during their lunch break.
When asked about his personal favorites on the menu, Chris was happy to share:
Favorite café item for lunch? “I could eat a meatloaf panini every day with a side of the house pasta salad.”
Favorite café item to take home? “I often take home the Greek turkey burger. It’s dinner at least once a week.”
Favorite bakery items to take home? “My kids will do anything for the M&M Cookies. As for me, I like to take home a chocolate chip cookie. I like to heat it up, put a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top and some caramel sauce.”
Favorite all-time guilty pleasure? “When you have worked in a bakery for as long as I have, your nose can identify what’s coming out of the oven as the aroma fills the air. So even if I’m in a different room, I can smell the chocolate rugalach cookies and know they are coming out. I’m the first one there to grab a half dozen off the rack and they’re consumed in about 30 seconds!”
Have you been into our café lately? If you haven’t, stop by and be sure to say hello! Try Chris’ favorite, the meatloaf sandwich, or try something new. We know you won’t be disappointed! Make sure you tell us what you think in the comments below or on Facebook!
Mid-September means everything is back in action: school, sports, work, football… it feels like everyone is back to full capacity. One advantage to this time of year? There is so much great food to look forward to: from Sunday Brunch, Football finger food, study-break snacks to the daily ritual of sharing dinner together after a long, productive day. That being said, finding new recipes that appeal to the whole family or impress guests might feel a little overwhelming. Looking for a new twist on an old recipe? We think you will love this slow-cooker pulled pork!
Sweet and savory pulled pork is always a good call. It’s the perfect filling for a platter of sliders when hosting the Patriots watch party. You can use it in paninis when hosting friends for brunch. Of course, you can throw them on some awesome brioche buns for a weeknight family dinner. You can even mix a little in with some mac & cheese for a playful rendition of an old favorite. The possibilities are endless! The best part? You can probably get two meals out of one shoulder. So, don’t be shy! Pick up a boneless pork shoulder from your favorite grocer and try this recipe! Tell us what you do with it on Facebook. And if you are wondering what kind of bread would be best for serving, may we suggest our new artisan sourdough breads? The ciabatta, sun-dried tomato and herb, roasted garlic and herb breads would do especially well with this dish!
SERVES 10 people (assume ½ lb pork per person)
For best results: Prep a day ahead to infuse the dry rub spices into the meat (refrigerate 8 hours sealed in a turkey bag). You do not need the turkey bag if you skip this step.
Prep time: ~8 hours
Cook time: 8-10 hours on low setting
What you need: Slow cooker, turkey bag*
5 lbs pork shoulder
1 cup of apple cider vinegar
½ cup of brown sugar
¼ cup crushed red pepper
Liquid smoke (optional)
DRY RUB INGREDIENTS
2 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp cumin
2 tbsp chili powder
2 tbsp pepper
2 tbsp kosher salt
Like it? Love it? Make a few tweaks? Tell us what you did! We really want to know! Maybe your variation will end up in our new monthly newsletter, due out September 28th! Please leave you thoughts in the comments :)
People come into our bakery looking for something special every day--from beautiful custom cakes to a simple plate of pasta. But we’ve come to know that so many of you walk through our doors looking for the perfect loaf of fresh-baked bread. That’s why we’ve been spending a long time, (about three years!) reconsidering how we approach baking bread and what we offer in our stores.
Spark of an Idea
A little over three years ago, we started toying with the idea of offering breads baked from a sourdough starter. Learning from some influential chefs and reading books from bakeries from famous sourdough cities (like San Francisco), our spark of an idea turned into a slow, deliberate experimentation. We worked from published recipes at first, then started developing flavors of our own. The result is now an expanding menu of sophisticated breads made using a slow-rise method and from a sourdough starter that we have cultivated here at our flagship bakery in Brockton.
What Goes into a Sourdough Loaf?
If you are unfamiliar with sourdough bread, you might be surprised to learn the simplicity of its ingredients. Sourdough breads start with what is known as a sourdough starter: a living, fermenting mixture of flour and water. That’s it! Natural bacteria that live in the environment around us, known as lactobacilli, and wild yeasts that live in the flour used and in the air, combine together over time to ferment and come alive. The starter must be “fed” every day with a little more water and a little more flour. Then it sits and grows and waits to be used!
Did you know that some people name their starters? There are some New England sourdough starters that date back to the very first settlers that came to our shores. In fact, baking sourdough bread is an ancient practice that dates back for millennia. Some argue that this is the best way, maybe even the only way, to truly bake bread. Though the research on this is still early and requires more studies, some hypothesize that sourdough breads may be better for people who have mild gluten sensitives. Because of how they are made, sourdough breads also boast a longer shelf-life than mass-produced bread.
How We Make it at White’s
As with all of our menu offerings, our sourdough breads are made fresh and onsite at our Brockton bakery. We start with fresh, excellent ingredients and now we add our homemade sourdough starter to give our breads that unique sourdough taste. Then, we wait. It takes a long time to let those natural yeasts do their work. The long, slow rise creates complex flavors that can only be achieved by adhering to this strict method. So the artisan loaf that you pick up in the store today was actually started yesterday morning. That’s how long it takes to achieve the unique taste we’re looking for.
Wondering about the rye and whole wheat breads on our artisan menu? It’s all the same: made onsite with simple, high-quality ingredients, all mixed with our sourdough starter. We mix the rye or whole wheat flour with our universal starter, creating unique starters just for those batches.
Modernizing a Legacy
We’re really proud of the breads that we’ve offered you all over these last 30 years. In fact, many of our regular staples are staying, unchanged on the menu. Making a change to a menu like ours isn’t an easy thing to do. Respecting the tastes and interests of our loyal customers while also elevating our offerings means striking a delicate balance. We’ve decided that the best way to do this isn’t to throw out the old recipes, but to introduce our new techniques into many of the bread offerings that you know and love. Furthermore, we’re rolling out exquisite new flavors that will be offered on a regularly rotating basis so you can sample the new possibilities that sourdough has to offer! Stop in today to pick up your new everyday favorite or sample something you’ve never tried before. We think you're gonna love it!
Hello and welcome to the White’s Bakery and Cafe Bakeology Blog! We have grand plans for this little piece of the internet and hope you will take some time to follow along. Our vision is this: to keep you up to date with happenings at the bakery, share recipes and tips (and the occasional tutorial) and to let you in on some of the behind-the-scenes fun at White’s.
To kick this off, we thought we’d share a bit of our bakery’s history...
When White’s Bakery opened back in 1987, we were a small shop in Easton, MA with a modest menu of tried-and-true recipes. Baking bread, muffins, cookies and cakes from scratch, we built a reputation for great food and excellence in service. Two short years later, we relocated to Brockton and opened our flagship Pearl Street location. Almost thirty years later, we are still here--proudly serving those original recipes to many of the same customers from the early days. The best part? Our customers’ families have grown with the bakery! We’ve seen these families thrive and change through weddings, birthdays, holidays and anniversaries. It’s truly amazing and we’re so lucky to have supporters and friends that trust us to be part of those very special celebrations!
It didn’t take long before our growth gave us an opportunity to expand. The next ten years of our business were spent upgrading from a small storefront to our current 25,000 square foot retail and production space. That expansion has enabled us to produce 200 baked breads and treats on a daily basis, and a few hundred custom cakes a week. All of our goods are prepared in Brockton and delivered to our Hingham and Mansfield locations daily.
We opened our second location on Derby Street in Hingham back in 1997. We are proud to say that White’s is the oldest existing tenant still operating at the Derby Street Shoppes, and we are continually looking for new ways to delight and serve our Hingham customers. (Have a suggestion? Email us your ideas here!). In March of 2014 we opened our third shop in Mansfield, completing the White’s Bakery and Cafe trifecta!
2012 brought the expansion and renovation of our Brockton store which has bolstered our capabilities tremendously, allowing us to better serve our customers and community at large. Offering soups, salads, paninis and even prepared dinners to go, our Brockton café truly means that White’s is more than just a breakfast spot. If you haven’t tried us for lunch, take a look at our cafe menu. We also post new specials regularly--follow us on Instagram to get those updates!
It’s important to note that our growth would not have been possible without the loyalty and passion of our staff, some of whom have worked alongside shop owner David White for well over 25 years. We are so fortunate and truly honored to have such amazing, inspiring and dedicated members of the White’s Bakery team.
After over 40 years as a professional baker and shop owner, David continues to work seven days a week (!), passionately baking and running the front of house. Let’s not forget that White’s is also a family affair: David works closely with his daughter and 2 sons each and every day. The strength and love of family is what makes White’s Bakery and Cafe what it is.
We so are grateful to our regular customers who come in for our fresh bread (apricot white chocolate, chorizo asiago and cranberry pecan just to name a few!), organic coffee, croissants and famous blueberry muffins. Couples who have purchased their custom wedding cakes from us have come back for anniversary cakes, baby shower treats, and birthday cakes for their children. Plenty of our friends and neighbors come in for seasonal delights, like our pumpkin cheesecake, Yule logs, custom cakes (perfect for any occasion) and our Christmas gingerbread houses. The seasons come and go, but we’re happy to say that our recipes keep bringing people back. Being part of this community is what gets us up and baking.
But let’s not forget the folks who visit our shop for the very first time! There’s nothing better than catching glimpses of newcomers when they take in the sights and smells of the shop. Like moths to a flame, we see your faces light up with excited childish grins as you approach the colorful display cases. Nothing makes us happier! Our customers inspire us each day to work harder and strive to be the best bakery around.
So thank you as always for your continued support and for including us in your special events, celebrations and familial milestones. Thank you for spreading the word and allowing us to create and share the things that we love. Our intention is to serve you through many years to come with fresh ideas, family atmosphere, and flavorful recipes that delight. Thanks for being part of our thirty-year history!
Please share your thoughts in the comments below--we’d love to hear from you!
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We are here to make your life a little sweeter! Please follow along and leave comments often :)