All photos are courtesy of One Mile Bakery
In 2012, Guardian journalist turned baker Elisabeth Mahoney launched the first One Mile Bakery in Cardiff. Inspired by her mother’s home cooking and baking, the concept was a hyper-local delivery service within a mile of her Cardiff townhouse, delivering homemade bread, soup and jam to subscribers by bike. She ran inspirational baking classes in her micro-bakery kitchen, and taught over 2100 people how to bake at home.
The original OMB has been featured as one of the UK’s best bakeries by Stylist magazine, The Sunday Times (Top 20) and The Daily Telegraph (Top 25) and has been shortlisted in the Best Independent Retailer category of the prestigious Observer Food Monthly awards for four consecutive years.
Now an exciting new chapter begins, with the launch of One Mile Bakery Exeter – the first One Mile Bakery in the south-west. Boudicca Woodland, a passionate foodie and amazing baker, bakes and teaches at home in the St Thomas area of the city She delivers bread, soups and preserves by bike within a mile radius of her home and also teaches amazing baking classes there. These include the core One Mile Bakery range of classes (Introduction to Baking; Introduction to Sourdough; French Baking; Italian Baking; Breads of the World; Festive Baking) but also her own bespoke Devon Baking Day, which is unique to OMB Exeter.
Here’s a bit about Boudicca in her own words:
I’m really excited to be running the first One Mile Bakery in the south-west. Delivering delicious homemade bread, soups and preserves by bike within my mile really appeals to me as does teaching OMB classes so that more people can bake amazing bread at home. I love meeting others who share my passion for great food and Exeter couldn’t be a better location for this, with its fantastic local produce and such a strong sense of community.
My love of food undoubtedly stems from my grandparents. They travelled the world and had experienced a wide variety of food. Every visit to them in London involved a restaurant visit and the opportunity to sample all sorts of cuisines. As a child, I lived in various places throughout the UK and each area has a special food memory – tea loaf and parkin with a strong cup of tea in West Yorkshire, barfi Indian sweets at Diwali in Manchester, stottie cakes in Newcastle and uncountable curries in Brick Lane, London.
My mother insisted that my brother and I would at least be able to make staple foods and our introduction to baking and cooking started quite early. I still remember the joy of standing on a chair in kitchen with a too long apron dangling while we ‘magicked’ up pleasing smells and tastes. I still love producing something amazing from a seemingly ‘empty’ cupboard. Nowadays, I love a weekend spent with my own kids standing on chairs, licking bowls and spoons and producing delightful bakes and makes.
Bread especially appeals to me as it is so varied – throughout the world – from a basic recipe to keep people fed to wonderful flavoursome creations for special occasions and celebrations.
I come from an arts administration background. From looking after the day to day administration for various theatre companies, through to acting as an agent for over 100 outdoor arts performers (from street magicians to aerialists). My love of theatre and performance has always run alongside my love of food. Both can make and build connections and build communities. Both also provide unequivocal joy.
I moved to Exeter just over 10 years ago from London with my partner (now husband) after making a list of requirements – a theatre, a cinema, decent Sunday lunch pubs, excellent coffee shops, and access to good food. Exeter has not let me down in the slightest and in fact has encouraged me to explore lots of different food events and also locally sourced, seasonal, food more than ever before. I’m passionate about my One Mile Bakery because it brings all my passions together in a place I love living in.
OMB Exeter delivers beautiful artisan loaves and the best local, seasonal produce in soups and preserves, and the classes teach introductory baking skills in a really fun, informal atmosphere around a kitchen table. These classes are taught to a maximum of four people at a time, and are relaxed, friendly and fun hands-on days offering a comprehensive introduction to baking bread. Hosting people at home is unique part of OMB courses: we want everyone to feel as if they are baking with a friend in their kitchen and enjoying a fabulous two-course lunch with wine while the dough does its magical rising thing. Everyone gets their baking to take home, with recipes and notes, plus the confidence to recreate the bakes at home.
Both the deliveries and the classes are all about gorgeous handmade, homemade food to share with people you love.