Blog

Thomas the Baker Mince Pies

  You might only just be starting to think about Christmas, but at Thomas the Baker we’ve been thinking about it for months! In fact, when I worked in the bakery a couple of years ago, I was surprised to see that they were starting to prepare for the Christmas rush at the end of summer! Now I always knew our mince pies were good, but it seems like lots of other people agree too – we’ve recently been named among the best mince pies in the country by Good Housekeeping, only just missing out on first place to Heston Blumenthal. Ours were awarded 73/100 and complimented on the delicious fruity filling, thin pastry and homemade appearance. We’re so pleased about this, particularly because ours came out above big names such as Bettys, Harrods, and Marks & Spencer. Not only do ours taste better, but they also come at a fraction of the price of other runner ups too –…

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Halloween Treats

One of the best things about being part of the Thomas family is getting to try out new products and hand them out to my friends and coworkers too. So yesterday, I had a message from my dad to pop round to the shop in Ripon to pick up a box. Arriving back at the office, I was pleasantly surprised with these lovely Halloween treats! There were a couple of bat biscuits and ghost biscuits, two boxes of Caramel Crispy Bites and some owl cupcakes, which my dad has informed me are called ‘Hooters Cupcakes’ – although I’m not sure how well that will go down! I was supposed to get some good pictures using my proper camera, but forgot to take it! So I ended up getting a bit of help from my colleagues at Bronco to get these photos on their phones and tweet them out! These photos come courtesy of some of the Bronco team – Becky, David, Kean,…

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Artisan Bread: In Production

  Recently we’ve been working hard on our range of artisan breads. A lot of people don’t tend to realise the amount of work that goes into a loaf like these. At Thomas the Baker, we pride ourselves on delivering only the best bread to you, so we don’t pack them full of additives so that they’ll last longer. Instead, they are baked every morning (early morning!) by our craft bakers so that they can be delivered to the shops as fresh as can be. We put a lot of hard work into developing these breads, and here you can see the way in which some of our artisan loaves are created. These are the Pain de Campagne being made by ‘the two Steves’ – Steve Simpson and Steve Cockayne. The Pain de Campagne is a traditional French loaf, meaning simply ‘country bread’. Here you see them moulding the dough, placing it and cutting it before baking it on the stone…

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Thomas of Helmsley

  You might have noticed over in our sidebar a bit of a reference to our sister shop, Thomas of Helmsley. While our shops are all primarily bakers, this one branches out a little bit, so I’m here today to tell you a bit more about it. Based in Helmsley, this shop has gone through a few changes over the years. When I was little, I knew it as the butchers, Nicholson’s, run by one of my best friend’s family. See that man in the top photo there? That’s my friend’s dad, Ben Nicholson, and one of the original butchers from Nicholson’s all those years ago. In the intervening time he was a minister and a postman, before turning back to butchery – you can see a pretty interesting photo of him combining his interests at the Gazette and Herald! We’ve had the shop for a few years now, and have slowly been adding more and more quality products, both of…

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Products in development with Stephanie Moon

You might remember I mentioned our development team at the bakery the other day. Well, it’s not just cupcakes and sweet things they’re always thinking it, it’s everything from new and exciting breads taking inspiration from recipes around the world to brand new ranges such as fudge and meringues – I’m keeping you in suspense here again, because there’s more of that to come at a later date. Here at the Thomas the Baker blog, you get exclusive access to what’s going on behind the scenes at the bakery, so today I’m bringing you a bit of information on a new product in development: deli style sausage rolls. Sausage rolls are one of our most popular savoury products. In fact, if anyone ever talks to me about Thomas the Baker, they’ll always mention sausage rolls. Personally, they’re not my favourite product, but that’s only because I’m more likely to be found lurking around the confectionery than the meat and savouries!…

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New Shop Refit: Easingwold

  A major thing that’s going on over at Thomas the Baker at the moment is a huge overhaul on the shops, and the latest to receive the full makeover treatment is Easingwold. You might remember that the old colour scheme was mainly blue and white, but we decided it was time to change things around, and this sleeker, more stylish looking black shop front won out. We’ve had some great feedback from customers already about the new shops, which we always love to hear! But it’s not just the outside of the shops that is being made over: As well as refitting the interior of Easingwold shop to create a more spacious shop floor and working environment for the staff with an extension out the back, we’ve also added a new feature: a freezer for the Bake At Home range. You can now simply walk into the shop, select anything out of the freezer that you’d like to have…

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National Cupcake Week

  Last week was National Cupcake Week, so I decided we just had to share some information on our cupcakes over at Thomas the Baker. As you can see in the pictures, all of our cupcakes are hand piped and decorated. What you might not realise is that they are even hand piped by a Thomas family member herself – the young lady in the photos is my younger sister, Beth, who is currently working full time in ‘Confec’, as it is colloquially known in the bakery. One of her everyday tasks is to load up a piping bag full with delectable butter icing and use a steady hand to form the perfect swirls. The range of cupcakes is constantly evolving, with new designs being thought up all the time by our development team, including a celebrity chef (more on that at a later date though!). Unfortunately our cupcakes are not currently available to buy online, so if you want to get…

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Cheese straws available to bake at home

We’ve been very lucky recently to get some great press coverage for an up and coming release on our online store, including The York Press, HU17.net, and even Hebrides News Today. If you took a look at those links, you might have guessed what that new release is: yes, one of our most popular and long-lived products, the cheese straw will be available for purchase from our Thomas the Baker online store! From tomorrow evening (Friday 13th – hope that’s not auspicious!), the cheese straws will be available to buy frozen from the website to bake at home. They will come with instructions on how to bake them to perfection yourself, and we’re treating our lovely blog readers to 10% off purchases of cheese straws! All you need to do is register at the website, add the cheese straws to your basket, and enter Straws10 at the checkout.   The cheese straws have taken a somewhat unusual route to reach…

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Welcome to the Thomas the Baker blog

Welcome to the Thomas the Baker blog! My name is Sian Thomas, daughter of Simon, granddaughter of John and Valerie, who along with my uncle, Gareth, started up Thomas the Baker more than 30 years ago. They’ve decided to get a bit closer to their customers via the internet and asked me to get involved, so I’m going to be bringing you a bit of news, some updates from the craft bakery including new products and shops news. But we’re also going to get a bit more interesting than that and include other exciting things such as interviews with staff members and local chefs, some tutorials on how to create or use some of our products, and answering any questions you’ve got about Thomas’ or baking in general. So a little about the bakery to get you started. As I mentioned, it was more than 30 years ago that the bakery started up at my grandparents’ house with my dad…

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