If you have enjoyed an exquisite scone, a chai brownie, or a delicious cinnamon roll (all are gluten-free!) here at the Raven, they were freshly made in-house by this wonderful Lady.
I love it when she’s here. If you have ever had the pleasure of meeting Linda, you know that she is full of sunshine and usually has a fun story to tell you about some random topic that you didn’t even know that you wanted to know more about. She has a big laugh, and I can always tell when she’s in the kitchen way before I walk in.
Linda was gracious enough to sit down with me and spill her secrets. (Some of them; she’s not dishing recipes, so if you would like some of her delicious baked goods you’ll still have to come and visit us.)
She started baking as a kid, with her grandma. “Before I could even reach the sink, I was on a chair. I loved spending time in the kitchen with grandma.”
Linda made the decision to cut gluten out of her diet long before being gluten-free was popular, about ten years ago. She remembers going to the store and looking for gluten-free pastries. There were no palatable substitutes to be found.
“I tried gluten-free cinnamon rolls from the store, and they were like cardboard. After I cried about the possibility of never eating cinnamon rolls again, I said to myself: You’re a baker! Figure it out!”
Linda’s transition to becoming a professional baker that offered gluten-free options as a staple was a decision that was made “for the love of cupcakes!”
Her favorite thing to make is the cinnamon rolls she offers here at the Raven. There is a lot of technique involved, and the recipe has evolved. It is a testament to her baking skills, and she is most proud of this particular baked good.
My own personal favorite is the Blueberry Lemon scone. I also tried a Lemon Lavender scone today, and was not disappointed. The baker herself describes this flavor as “I’m eating a lemon in the middle of a lavender field.”
Linda loves feeding people, nurturing them and sharing the love through baking. Her goal is to make people happy through baking.
“Baking is an extension of nurturing and caring. It is a skill and a tradition that is being lost, and this is a shame. Baking makes you slow down; it’s chemistry and alchemy, there’s a Frankenstein mad genius to it.”
Her favorite thing to eat is a good marinara, and she grows everything that she needs to make a delicious sauce. Tomatoes, vegetables, leeks, and kale can all be found in her garden at home.
If you ever get the chance, ask her about her farewell to bacon. It is a beautiful story, you will get an excellent recipe out of the tale, and it is an event that should be immortalized in a painting.
Parting words of wisdom: she has baked in the nude before, and does not recommend this activity. It does not matter what your skill level is as a baker, it is very dangerous.
You can find more information and examples of Linda’s work on her Facebook page, Lefty’s Lunchbox.
-Jessica, your Media Specialist