Bread is rising in Dallas

Image courtesy of Empire Baking Company
 
At Empire Baking Company in Dallas, the new breads are unbelievable. One called Hippie Health is a delicious blend of whole wheat, flax and sunflower seeds, sweetened with a bit of molasses. Billed as a great sandwich bread, the moist texture offers widespread appeal. The bakery cafe also bakes an assortment of nontraditional breads like the Lavash topped with parmesan and sesame seeds. 
 
Technology has paved the way for more growth in recent years, as customers can now order online and get home delivery via UberEATS. Dallas-area guests can choose from more than 100 restaurants through the UberEATS app, place orders online, and food will be delivered fresh to their door. There are two kinds of delivery services within the app. First, customers can order food to arrive in 10 minutes or less. That's available only from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Also, during the hours between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m., UberEATS offers regular deliver-to-your-door service.

 

One of the main reasons behind its success, though, stems from Empire Baking’s longstanding commitment to using high quality ingredients including King Arthur flour, natural sea salt, Plugra butter, Boars Head meats, local pecans, and Callebaut chocolate. 

“Time may be the most important ingredient used in making our bread, as it imparts the greatest flavor,” says Tamie Hoffman, general manager. “That’s why we use minimal yeast and our breads are made from scratch, meaning everything is handmade, hand-shaped and baked fresh every day. There are no fillers, conditioners, dough enhancers, preservatives, artificial flavors or colors ever used.”
 
At Bread Winners Bakery & Bistro, which operates four locations in Dallas and plans to open in Fort Worth and Trophy Club, Texas, in 2017, features five “homemade breads” on a daily basis: cinnamon raisin, 100% whole grain, cocktail buns, pull-apart rolls, and brioche. The $7 loaves of 100% whole grain are especially popular nowadays.
 
Plans for the Trophy Club restaurant call for a courtyard feel, rooftop space and European-style architectural features. In addition to a breakfast-through-dinner restaurant, the Trophy Club Bread Winners will also serve as the corporate catering hub for the west side of the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Catering offered through Bread Winners
 

“Bread Winners was at the top of our list of desired restaurants to target for Trophy Club and our region,” Trophy Club town manager Stephen Seidel says. “We felt it fit our community and would attract folks from all over Tarrant and Denton counties. I have even had a Hurst resident call to thank me for pursuing Bread Winners because the drive from Hurst to Trophy Club is quicker — they no longer have to travel to downtown Dallas to eat there.”

The very first Bread Winners opened in July of 1994 with 10 employees, a near empty bank account and a prayer for customers. Owners Jim and Cindy Hughes wanted work to feel like a “home away from home” atmosphere and embraced their new employees as extended family members. 
 
That first year, Bread Winners just served breakfast and lunch. Word quickly spread and soon dinner service was launched. Catering was then added a few years later due to the increasing demand.
 
Of note, the owners bought the name for one dollar from a restaurateur friend in Omaha that was closing down his concept. The Hughes actually lived on the second floor of the Uptown location for the first several years with their young children. All four of their children and both sets of parents have worked at the restaurant in some capacity over the past 20 years. 
 

Top Trends for 2017

These bakery cafes offer breads that are certainly in step with the latest trends. According to the National Restaurant Association’s newest “What’s Hot” list for 2017, top trends for the new year include ancient grains (kamut, spelt, amaranth, lupin) and protein-rich grains/seeds (hemp, chia, quinoa, flax).

 

Menu trends today are beginning to shift from ingredient-based items to concept-based ideas, mirroring how consumers tend to adapt their activities to their overall lifestyle philosophies, such as environmental sustainability and nutrition,” says Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of research for the National Restaurant Association. “Also among the top trends for 2017, we’re seeing several examples of house-made food items and various global flavors, indicating that chefs and restaurateurs are further experimenting with from-scratch preparation and a broad base of flavors.”

A Sweet Take on Toast

Try this breakfast menu idea from Empire Baking Company in Dallas to attract customers for a change of place for those with a sweet tooth.

Strawberry, Banana and Chocolate Toast 

Empire Farm long bread, toasted to desired doneness
Cream cheese, room temperature
Strawberries, sliced
Banana, sliced
Stonewall Kitchen Bittersweet Chocolate (squeeze in a bottle)

Spread cream cheese on the bread. Arrange strawberries and bananas on cream cheese. Drizzle chocolate sauce on fruit.

Source: Empire Baking Company