Delicate croissant dough, pastry cream, and slices of sweet Cara Cara and blood oranges are brushed with simple syrup and sprinkled with powdered sugar to create East Bay Bakery’s citrus Danish pastry. It’s sure to brighten your day during these dark winter months.
Owner Gaby Lubaba—who has sold her artisan baked goods and sourdough bread at the Walnut Creek Farmers Market since last January—is taking advantage of peak citrus season, which coincides with the Bay Area’s coldest time of year, when oranges, lemons, grapefruits, pomelos, and the like are ripest and juiciest.
"Citrus is so versatile and is one of the most important fruits used in baked goods," Lubaba explains. "Not only does it pair well with other fruits, [but] the peel, the flesh, and the juice can be used in different types of cakes, bread, and pastries."
Lubaba’s small, five-person patisserie emphasizes using the highest- quality ingredients, including only non-GMO, organic flours and grains. The citrus Danish, along with other winter treats such as a lemon curd Danish with cream cheese, should be available through February. More year-round favorites include a cardamom-cinnamon morning bun, strawberry brioche tart, and brown butter chocolate chip cookie.
For now, customers can only find East Bay Bakery at the weekly Walnut Creek Farmers Market (Sundays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.) and at the Saturday Orinda Farmers Market from March through November. But Lubaba says to "stay tuned," as she hopes to expand in the near future. In the meantime, she’ll keep honing her craft. "I love the creativity part of [baking]," Lubaba says. "[I’m] continuously striving to make better products, tweaking recipes, and creating new flavors." theeastbaybakery.com.