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Meet Tanja of Breadista in West LA

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tanja.

Tanja, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
As a native German, I’m addicted to bread. Living without good and healthy bread is nearly impossible (smile). In Germany, especially in the Southwest where I’m from, are a lot of artisan bakeries with a tremendous amount of breads and rolls. Not to forget our real German Brezel (US: ‘Pretzel’).

When we moved to the US finding good comparable bread was tricky. We still miss that gorgeous smell of fresh bread when you come into a bakery. Anyone who has ever visited Germany or France may know exactly what I am talking about.

Have you ever consciously noticed the smell in the bread aisle in your supermarket? Store bought bread here in the US is far away from ‘bread’. Even when you want to buy flour, you have to check the ingredients list. That was also totally new for us – bleached, bromated, enriched flour – nothing we had ever heard of.

There is to break a lance for bread because the stigma persists – bread or carbs are bad. That’s clearly not true. You just have to choose the right ones.

And that was the beginning of BREADISTA when I started to make our own and real bread at home.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
As mentioned above, flour is not equal flour here. Finding the right one in a high quality was not so easy. They are also named differently as in Europe. In Germany you have a number with the type of flour, so you know exactly how healthy it is. I.e., Wheat 405 (US: Pastry Flour) vs. Wheat 1050 (nearly Whole Grain) indicates the larger the number the higher the nutritional value. Which in turn means more of the whole grain is grounded. Basically very simple. At the end, I found my bags of flour in a mill here on the West Coast.

It took months until I could adapt my favorite recipes for our typical breads and rolls. Even the gas oven and the different measurements were a big part of that.

After some American friends tried the German bread and found it delicious, the idea for BREADISTA was born. However, a lot of paperwork was still needed and that took time as well.

Please tell us about BREADISTA.
BREADISTA offers pre-measured bread baking mixes. Our credo – purity is the highest law here. No preservatives, no color or flavors, never enriched or bleached flour. High-quality ingredients and time is the key factor for delicious homemade bread. Just the way we’re used to do it in Germany.

Currently, we deliver the baking mix in a monthly subscription box. Always included are some add-ons like useful kitchen or baking tools and different delicious spreads. We like to cooperate with and support other small businesses who offer something special as well. Our baking-mixes will also be available individually after each box has been released.

With every baking box we’ll teach our customer in making traditional bread and rolls. A step-by-step guide is always included. We want to improve their skills and that they can learn more about our German bread culture. We have over 3,000 different kinds of bread plus rolls and of course, our beloved German Brezel. So, we’ll never run out of ideas for our bread baking mixes.

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