Anything that can be baked on a griddle, Mark Douglas does it. From soda farls to potato and apple cakes to fluffy pancakes, customers are wolfing them down as fast as he can make them. None of them need yeast, so all he has to do is mix the ingredients and he’s good to go. This Krazi Baker bakes at markets across Northern Ireland and beyond. He’s also recently branched out into oven bakes and his Butter Shortbread made with Abernethy Butter scooped a Gold Star at the Great Taste Awards. He already holds one for his Potato Apple Bread.
Q: What makes your product unique?
A: I bake on site while you watch
Q: Where do you source your raw ingredients?
A: Flour at Andrews Mills Belfast
Buttermilk from Draynes Farm produced at Ballyrashane.
Butter for GTA winner 2015 shortbread from Abernethy Butter.
Q: What inspires you as a producer?
A: My inspiration came from a simple thought of wanting to make bread on site and to make the most of the skills I have learned from 34 years in the Home Baking industry. Also with the rise in the premix on the industry the skill is being diminished and I wanted to use and uphold a traditional skills.
Q: How did you get started?
A: I started at Conway Mill who were starting a small market after being turned down by St.George’s on a few occasions.
My progression started from wanting to bake at Balmoral Show and finding Foodni which I joined and my first event was there in 2013.
Q: Why do you think it’s important to keep local?
A: So the economy builds within local people and in the bigger picture we can maintain skills which are fast being lost in baking cooking growing the list goes on.
Q: What motto do you live/work by?
A: Believe in yourself don’t give on to the doubters who tell you that you are made. Produce good quality goods at a fair price.
Q: Where can we buy your products?
A: I work at markets and events. Every Saturday at Newtownards market Co. Down in Conway Square, Balmoral Show, Garden Show Ireland, Georgian Day Armagh etc.
Q: What food best compliments your product? Or what is your favourite way of using your product?
A: Soda bread and potato are intergal elements of the Ulster fry but you can also use both for many users. I have made Dill potato bread for smoked salmon starter.
This year I won a GTA for an oven soda with Cinnamon and whiskey soaked sultanas so there are many flavours you can add.
My aim is to take a lost skill back to the home.
I have started a small baking school from home and there is plenty of interest in learning home baking.
Visit krazibaker.co.uk to see a full list of their products.