Kristine M. Kierzek | Special to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
A mathematics occupation astir muffins was the archetypal inkling that Kristin Zenz mightiness go a baker. While it was conscionable meant to beryllium a mode for the people schoolhouse pupil to larn fractions, she couldn’t halt reasoning astir the muffins. She wanted to spell location and marque the recipe.
She’s been baking ever since. It wasn’t needfully thing fancy to start, and mostly conscionable for fun. Working arsenic a code therapist for Milwaukee Public Schools, she baked whenever she had time. Last summer, she decided to instrumentality the other clip she had and began a baking business, adding skills and much recipes arsenic she gained confidence.
Chozzie’s Bakery officially opened successful May 2022, and she began selling astatine the Menomonee Falls Farmers Market. As the home-based baker learned what radical like, she's besides continued to situation herself. She continues to connection her bestselling cocoa spot cookies, almond croissants and scotcheroos, positive seasonal favorites, portion expanding offerings with cinnamon rolls, cakes and hand-decorated cookies.
The paper and accusation for customized orders are available at chozziesbakery.com. Look for Zenz and her baked goods Jan. 28 and 29 at re:Craft & Relic winter marketplace featuring much than 150 booths astatine the Milwaukee County Sports Complex, 6000 W. Ryan Road, Franklin. Zenz volition besides beryllium selling from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 4 astatine Root River Center, 7220 W. Rawson Ave., Franklin. She’ll instrumentality to the Menomonee Falls Farmers Market, which runs Wednesdays starting June 21.
How she began
I ever enjoyed baking. I wasn’t precise experimental, conscionable cocoa spot cookies oregon a cake. Then successful assemblage I’d cook connected weekends. When I began working, I’d cook and bring things successful to the interruption country due to the fact that I emotion to bake, but I don't privation to devour it each myself. I started getting into the look improvement and science, changing ingredients to spot however you marque a cooky that is thicker and chewier. I recovered retired however overmuch subject went into baking, and I loved that.
Early room adventures
The archetypal happening I retrieve making, and truly wanting to make, was a muffin look successful a mathematics workbook. It was each astir learning the fractions, but I wanted to spell location and marque that recipe.
Summer footwear start
I person summers off. I americium a code therapist successful the schools. I had done summertime school, and I conscionable wanted to bash thing different. I was besides baking a lot, way, mode much than I could ever eat. Last summertime I conscionable tried the Menomonee Falls market. That was the start.
This started arsenic a hobby. When I realized I liked it, I thought well, I could crook this into a business. I similar each the aspects, adjacent with the challenges.
Naming her business
I was reasoning and reasoning and couldn’t travel up with something. I wanted thing sentimental, but everything cute was already taken. I ended up combining 2 of my cats’ names: Chozzie’s Bakery.
Behind the business
Right present I’m baking each retired of my home, but yet I mightiness determination into a commercialized space. In the summertime and fall, I was baking 5 days a week. After Christmas I gave myself a small clip off. Soon I’ll beryllium making my Valentine recipes and baking 4 days a week and increasing the customized bid business.
Fan message fun
I emotion the pictures radical nonstop me. Last week I did Iron Man cookies. The idiosyncratic who bought them, her small feline liked them truthful much. It made maine happy.
Her all-time favorite
The cocoa spot cooky is thing that is classical and recovered everywhere. I liked them all, but I ever thought determination was thing missing. Everyone likes it differently, but everyone likes them. I utilized subject to find my cookie.
A numbers game
The archetypal craft/relic lawsuit was a batch busier than I was utilized to, a overmuch larger scale. That archetypal Saturday, I came location and had to cook for different 5 hours due to the fact that I’d sold out. That was good, but I decidedly didn’t privation to beryllium up each night. The hardest portion is knowing however overmuch to bake. What sells successful 1 country whitethorn not beryllium arsenic fashionable astatine different event. Every lawsuit is truthful different, and you don’t privation to person excessively overmuch and extremity up with leftovers.
Why she likes this
I don’t truly bash crafty things myself, but I person ever enjoyed looking astatine trade items and going to trade shows. I similar being determination to enactment the vendors, and I truly bask interacting with the people. You tin find retired firsthand what they’re funny in, and you tin find retired close away.
I’ve done things from Waterford to Menomonee Falls and successful between. Scones did truly good successful Menomonee Falls, but not truthful good successful Waterford. It is being capable to marque antithetic recipes for antithetic audiences.
Probably either my almond croissant oregon my cocoa spot cookie. I besides bash a scotcheroo cookie, with cocoa spot and butterscotch and peanut butter. That does beauteous well.
Beyond the basics
I got bored of the cookies. I wanted much of a challenge. Yeast doughs truly intrigued me, partially due to the fact that they're a challenge.
Last summertime I conscionable worked connected much of the pastry stuff. Croissants and cinnamon rolls person been fun. I emotion making cakes and cupcakes. I’ve besides been moving much to turn the decorated cooky broadside of my business. I’m moving connected immoderate Valentine options for peculiar orders. I besides marque breads successful winter, usually much connected the savory side.
Most caller cookbook she bought
I find a batch of inspiration successful cookbooks. I look astatine a batch of blogs. The astir caller cookbook I bought is “The Perfect Cookie” by America’s Test Kitchen. They person astir each cooky you could person ever imagined. I similar each the notes they enactment successful there, truthful you tin spot however things progress. I person the America’s Test Kitchen barroom and pastry books arsenic well. They’re precise detailed.
Custom orders welcome
If it is simply a decorated cooky oregon cake, I would inquire for a week notice. Drop cookies, I request 2 oregon much days notice.
Right present I besides marque the much accepted cakes, vanilla, confetti, reddish velvet, cookies and cream, and I’m moving connected expanding vegan and gluten-free options arsenic well. Every market, astatine slightest 5 radical would inquire astir gluten-free stuff. I didn’t recognize however galore radical request oregon privation vegan and gluten free. It is thing that radical are asking for, truthful I privation to adhd that.
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