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Half Baked Cook - Bakery


A bakery is an establishment where baked goods such as breads and pastries are made and often sold.  Persons who create the products sold in a bakery are called bakers.  In addition to baked goods, many bakeries might also offer a small menu of sandwiches, salads, and drinks, particularly during peak sales times and meal hours.

Life as a Baker

Bakers are charged with creating, preparing, and marketing bread, cookies, pastries, pies, and a variety of other baked goods for sale in bakeries, grocery stores, and outlets.  In sole proprietary bakeries, bakers bake items on a small scale, often replenishing their inventory on the daily basis.  They may also be responsible for creating specialty items for events such as birthday parties, weddings, and bar mitzvahs. Depending on the season, bakers may also feature foods and dishes that appeal to local tastes, or ones that emphasize a baker's particular artistic specialty. Creativity and artistry is the key to a baker√Ęs success.  Bakers must be able to implement a customer√Ęs ideas and specifications to create a masterpiece.  There are many famous bakers in the world.  In larger scale industrial bakeries, bakers work to produce goods in large quantities using industrial equipment, such as mixers and ovens.

Education of Bakers

Bakers do not need high levels of education, necessarily. They often begin their careers as apprentices or trainees in local bakeries, learning through on-the-job training opportunities.  Many high schools with technical programs offer courses and rudimentary training programs in culinary arts.   Community college courses in the culinary arts are also widely available.  Aspiring bakers have a wide array of options to obtain training before they get a job in a specialty or industrial bakery.

Bakers must also learn about nutrition, government health and sanitation regulations, operating and maintaining machinery, and production processes. If a baker aims to own his or her own bakery, then an acute knowledge of business, management, and accounting is necessary.  Some bakery owners hold business degrees in addition to culinary arts degrees. Bakeries can be found almost anywhere, although they are becoming rarer as many large chain grocery stores have begun routinely offering bakery and deli services.  Bakers can also be found in upper scale restaurants and resorts.