Next to Pioneer Woman, Paula Deen has always been one of my favorite chefs to watch. So of course I was more than bummed when the executives of Food Network lost their minds and cancelled her show over what can simply be called nonsense. Politics and what is the ‘politically correct’ thing to do make me want to hurl.
After watching one particular guest Paula had on her show, I immediately went on Amazon and purchased her book. Cheryl and Griffith Day are the owners of Back in the Day Bakery and coauthors of The Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook and, their newest book, Back in the Day Bakery: Made with Love.
I don’t know if it was the concept of their tiny bakery in Savannah or the temptation of the cupcakes she was preparing with Paula, but Cheryl Griffith won me over and convinced me that her recipes were ones I wanted in my collection.
The bakery has humble surroundings. If you aren’t looking for it, you could drive right past it and never know.
But inside is a wonderland of sweets and savories that will make you reconsider every bakery you have ever visited before in your life.
Knowing they also served specialty sandwiches, we planned to visit for lunch on my birthday.
But of course, we ordered dessert before we even looked at the sandwich menu.
Once that was taken care of, we ordered lunch. It was a real battle to choose between a hot and cold sandwich, but finally I went with my gut and ordered the Super Chicken: sharp cheddar, herbed mayo, red onion lettuce, on a rustic baguette.
They probably could have simply spread the herbed mayo on the baguette and I would have been happy. The bread was high quality, and the sandwich, well, I’m still upset with myself that I could only eat half of it.*
*I did have dessert staring me in the face, after all.
Lance ordered the sandwich that intrigued me, but I would never have the guts to order for myself, the Curry Chicken: golden raisins, lettuce, curried mayo.
The difference that can be made to a basic sandwich simply by mixing a few extra ingredients in with mayo is phenomenal.
I’m going to be honest with you because honesty is super important. Before our sandwiches were ready, while Hubby was still at the counter and I was sitting comfortably at our seats, I snagged a quick bite of the key lime pie square that we ordered.
I couldn’t help myself. It was staring me down and screaming, “Eat me! Eat me! Eat me!”
So I did.
After having made lemon bars about a million times this summer and key lime pie a handful of times, I was interested to see what Back in the Day’s key lime squares were like.
Perfection, of course. They have a thick and crumbly crust on the bottom, smooth, light and tangy key lime filling, and the necessary hefty dollop of homemade whipped cream.
The old fashioned vanilla cupcake was what I was especially excited to eat. I have been making these cupcakes since I ordered the cookbook after watching Cheryl make them with Paula.
They are simple, and I serve them with less pomp and circumstance than the above cupcake, but they always receive compliments. In fact, Lance’s coworker served them to her daughter who has diabetes and it is the only treat that she has eaten that has not caused her sugar levels to sky rocket. That’s got to be saying something about them, right?
Also, my sister-in-law nearly called me a liar when I told her that the frosting, though sweet and smooth and delicious, does not have any cream cheese in it.
This little cupcake did not disappoint. It had the perfect amount of frosting, which was smooth and delightful. The cake is dense, doesn’t fall apart at first bite and tastes like heaven.
Lance also ordered banana pudding. Even though I’m not a big banana lover, I tried it. If I liked bananas, I bet I would say that it was the best banana pudding I’ve ever eaten.
The best part of Back in the Day Bakery is that in the seating area there is a wall with re-purposed windows that peek into the backroom where all the magic happens.
Yes, I did see Cheryl and Griffith back there and yes, I did try to creep on them and take pictures. Unfortunately, those were all blurry because I’m still working on my spy skills. It was, however, a special experience to be able to watch the masters in action.
We enjoyed ourselves so much at Back in the Day Bakery that we squeezed in another stop there at the end of our trip. Stick around for that post coming soon.