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Vancity Vendor –
French Made Baking

September 30th, 2011 by Jeannine

Vancity Vendor: French Made Baking

French Macarons have become a popular choice for wedding favors… it’s a good thing it’s one of the specialties of this week’s Vancity Vendor! Say ‘bonjour’ to David and Catherine, a French-from-France couple who owns French Made Baking. They have been selling authentic traditional French pastries and confections since January of this year. David bakes, while Catherine is in charge of sales and marketing… but she occasionally helps out with the baking, too!

Their macarons come in several flavours namely Earl Grey tea, passionfruit, hazelnut, pistachio, and raspberry. Specialty flavours like lemon, matcha green tea, coffee-confite orange, yuzu, strawberry and black sesame are available when in season. Single macaron favor boxes starts at $3.25 each and 2-macaron favor boxes start at $5.50, with a decreasing cost, the bigger the order. Clients can request custom flavours but may be subject to an extra fee. They recommend orders be placed as soon as possible or a minimum of 2-3 weeks notice so they have enough production time. Once you receive your macarons, they can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days. They also have pyramid macaron stands for rent ($25 each) so you can have the option to display macarons on a dessert table. They have one available for 200 macarons and 2 stands that will fit 40 each.

They will soon be opening a bakery in Mount Pleasant, just a bit north of Broadway and one block off Main Street, where they will be able to offer other goods like croissants, choux pastries, cakes and tarts, as well as baguette sandwiches and quiches for lunch. If you want to stay updated on what’s coming out of their oven, follow them on Facebook and Twitter, as they are active in the social media scene… you may even get a chance to win some macarons or score a great discount :)

A Few Words With David and Catherine…

What do you have to offer for brides with lower budgets?
“1-macaron boxes start at $3.25 and cost can go down significantly with quantity, or we can provide mini-financiers almond cakes (plain, chocolate or with a fruit) for less than $1 (price goes down with quantities too) then you can find your own packaging (like tulle).”

What sets you apart from others in the same field?
“Our products are hard to find in Vancouver and we are committed to offer the most authentic French pastries and confections. We take the utmost care in making high quality products like you could find in a Parisian bakery. And we care about our customers so we’re happy to listen to your story to understand what you want, give advice and suggest options if you need.”

What kind of ingredients do you normally use?
“We use mostly organic ingredients (sugar, flour, eggs…) and we try to shop local as often as we can. For the chocolate, we use high quality Belgian chocolate (that is also Fair Trade and organic). Most ingredients are a little different than in France (eggs, flour) so they don’t produce the same results unless you adapt your recipes. That’s where David’s talent comes into play and makes our products pretty much identical to what you could find in France in any good bakery.”

Do you cater to different dietary requests?
“We have a few products that are gluten free: French macarons, financier almond cakes and a chocolate lava cake. We will be working on offering more gluten free options in the future. As for vegan, sorry but we just can’t bake anything truly French without eggs and/or butter.”

What made you decide to specialize in French pastries?
“Being born and raised in France, we’ve had quality pastries all our lives until we moved to Vancouver. When we came here, like all French people, we were dismayed by the lack of European bakeries (especially good ones) and by what some of them call ‘croissants’ and ‘éclairs’ (real éclairs are not supposed to be cut in half and filled with whipped cream, that’s just an insult to whoever invented it…). And we both love just as much baking and eating pastries. We’ve both started baking when we were kids with our moms so it’s natural for us to think ‘what can I bake’ rather than ‘what can I buy’ when we have a dinner party or when we want something sweet. I think it’s something a lot of French people share. We already knew most of the recipes, or at least how these pastries are supposed to look and taste like, so it was natural to specialize in French products.”

Are you always looking to come out with new flavours? What’s your most interesting flavor so far, and which is your most favourite to eat?
“We have a sheet of paper filled with macaron flavours we’re dying to try! On top of the list are Black sesame and Lavender… And cherries are in season so that would be a nice addition too! We are just limited by the lack of space we have now (both in the kitchen we’re renting and at the markets) so we can only introduce a new one once or twice a month and we have to limit ourselves to 6 or 7 flavours at a time. But once we have a shop, we’d like to offer 15 to 20 different flavours, a mix of permanent and seasonal ones. The most interesting so far is definitely the Yuzu macaron. The Belgian dark chocolate blends in perfectly with the citrus aromas of yuzu juice (in between tangerine and lime). Our favourites are the Earl Grey tea (Catherine) and the Passion Fruit (David).”

What do you enjoy most about your job?
“We both like to interact with our customers. That’s why we chose to sell on markets and to open a shop, we just like to share our treats with everyone and we’re never so happy than when we catch people’s (pleasant) surprise when they bite into a canelé or macaron for the first time.”

If you had one piece of advice for a bride and groom, what would it be?
“Relax! Take it easy and enjoy the day, don’t be upset if something doesn’t go according to plan but laugh about it… And choose reliable vendors so you don’t have to worry about whether the flowers or macarons will show up or not.”

To contact David and Catherine, visit their website.
Do you have what it takes to be a Vancity Vendor? Apply here.

Photos provided by French Made Baking and Vancity Bride

Vendor prices are subject to change. All prices quoted are accurate to the date published.

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  • March 21st, 2012 at 12:39 pm
    doreen says:

    French Macaroons, Delicious!
    My sister and I treated ourselves to tea at The Urban Tea Merchant. They served French macaroons :)


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