The little red hen asks her friends to help bake bread, and they are unwilling – but they want to eat the bread. Much the same way, my kids refused to accompany me to The Baker’s Store & Café, in Norwich, VT, every time we took a family vacation to Vermont.
This store, run by the makers of King Arthur Flour, is a Mecca for bread and cake bakers. But it is also a great place to take kids, with a section for kids’ cooking tools, and kid-sized picnic tables covered with paper so children can draw (crayons provided).
Norwich is just a few minutes from Hanover, NH, where you can walk around the Dartmouth College campus. Go hiking at the Storrs Pond Recreation Area, which also has two sandy beaches with swimming and a heated swimming pool.
The Baker’s Store, currently under renovation, also has a café, with a wide variety of muffins and scones for breakfast, with excellent fair trade coffee. At lunch, there are sandwiches on the café’s excellent bread. We went for the vegetarian choices: artichoke hearts with roasted peppers and tapenade, and sun-dried tomato with local goat cheese.
I bought a variety of flours I’d never seen in New York; ‘medium’ rye to add to a sourdough rye bread, and a pumpernickel mix that promises to elevate my multi-grain bread. There were also jars of sugar in every color of the rainbow, to decorate cakes, and gadgets I didn’t know I needed. The sourdough starter crock means I can reclaim the bowl that has long been holding my starter.
But who will eat the bread?