Jock Sharp has slept for just four hours in the last two days. We caught up with the joiner turned baker on Sunday at the Walled Garden near Kincardine and heard how the wonderful real breads he and his wife Fiona make at their bakery in Crossgates have found such an enthusiastic audience among the bread connoisseurs of Fife that the pair have to work flat out to keep up with demand. Jock told us, ‘after 40 years as a joiner I decided to turn a passion into a career. It’s hard work but I love it.’
The couple only started baking bread at their Woodlea Stables smallholding at the beginning of the year but already have a loyal customer base in the local Italian population who tell Jock they previously had to go to Edinburgh to source good bread. Top French restaurant La Garrigue is also a regular customer ordering at least 40 loaves a week from the small West Fife establishment.
Jock is a great ambassador for his product but really the breads have to be tasted to be believed. Fragrant Rosemary and Parmesan, flavoursome tomato and superb sourdough are just a few of the delicious loaves in the range which also includes ciabatta, Italian white and malted wheat. At Woodlea they only bake what they call ‘real bread’, stone baked bread that avoids improvers and preservatives in favour of organic and locally milled flours, water, salt and minimal yeast. Also available from Woodlea are tasty eggs from the smallholding’s chickens who are described as being ‘free to do their own thing’. However it is a case of the early bird catches the egg as no matter many eggs the Woodlea hens produce – and it’s a lot – they are nearly always all sold by 1 o’clock.
We hope Jock catches up with his sleep soon – now that the Avocado Sweet team have tasted that Rosemary loaf, we will definitely be back for more.
Woodlea Stables is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday. You can find them at Woodlea Stables, Inverkeithing Road, Crossgates KY11 7ER. Telephone 07803 053005 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.