The main dish tends to steal the spotlight, especially when it comes to planning and preparation. But what do you often reach for first at the holiday table? Bread — classic dinner rolls, spicy cheese bread, sweet and savory loaves. We say bread in its many delicious forms is what truly brings a meal together. Keep these local bakeries in mind for your upcoming family gathering.
Stella’s Bakery boasts a variety of artisan breads, pastries and pretzels. However, many know and love Stella’s for one particular thing: Hot & Spicy Cheese Bread. This farmers’ market favorite doubles as a Thanksgiving must-have, and comes in a regular size or minis for holiday orders. Stella’s also plans to offer dinner rolls, seasonal pies, multigrain artisan bread and monkey bread this Thanksgiving season. Place orders online, or find Stella’s at various markets and local grocery stores. 2908 Syene Road, 608-663-2690, stellasofmadison.com
An east-side classic, Madison Sourdough offers custom-made cakes, fresh bread and pastries at its dine-in restaurant year-round. In addition to standard loaves such as baguettes, miche and country bâtards, Madison Sourdough bakes holiday bread options for Thanksgiving. Both the soft, buttery, pull-apart Parker House Rolls and the smaller sourdough dinner rolls are sold in packs of six, making for an easy grab-and-pass addition to your table. Those looking for a sweeter option can try the Cranberry Walnut Bâtard — a sourdough loaf made with wheat and kamut flours, cranberries and toasted walnuts. Customers can preorder and pay online, then pick up the day before Thanksgiving. 916 Williamson St., 608-442-8009, madisonsourdough.com
Bloom Bake Shop
Thanksgiving is a big holiday for Bloom Bake Shop. “We offer a beautiful variety of pies, layer cakes, tarts and, of course, many bread offerings for the Thanksgiving table,” says shop owner Annemarie Maitri. Previous Thanksgiving offerings have included pumpkin chevre sourdough, cinnamon raisin swirl bread and chocolate babka, but cranberry pecan sourdough is making its debut this year. According to Maitri, the black pepper Parmesan sourdough, herbed focaccia and classic dinner rolls are customer favorites. Order online for in-store pickup. 1851 Monroe St., 608-628-2249, bloombakeshop.com
Origin Breads is best known for its popular sourdough focaccia. “Since we opened in 2016, we have only used local grains in our baked goods,” says owner Kirk Smock. This Thanksgiving, Origin will feature specialty selections alongside some of the year-round favorites. Origin plans to offer two different sourdough pull-apart buns (a brioche and a vegan option made with sunflower oil), as well as a sourdough loaf made with local roasted potatoes and herbs. Place orders in house or online, or find Origin Breads at grocery stores and co-ops around the city. 931 E Main St., 608-419-8452, originbreads.com
[bayk] MADISON is a woman-owned, small-batch bakery specializing in babka — a cake-like bread with a rich history. In addition to the year-round sweet, boozy and savory babka loaves, [bayk] has three Thanksgiving-exclusive flavors: iced cranberry-orange crumble, roasted pumpkin-pecan with maple cinnamon icing and maple-apple cinnamon crumble. “As always, our top three most popular varieties — chocolate hazelnut, cinnamon streusel and our sticky pecan caramel — will be available as well,” says owner and head baker Susan Kay. Order online for pickup, Dane County delivery or shipping across the country. 931 E. Main St., 608-257-2691, baykmadison.com
Make It Yourself
Considering making your own bread instead? Plenty of local bakeries offer a “DIY” option for your dinner table. From Wisconsin cheddar beer bread to pumpkin bread, Willow Creek Mill has a variety of mixes that can be delivered right to your door. For grains that come straight from a local farm, Meadowlark Organics offers organic flour mixes and bread mixes that are well-suited for your favorite recipes. Just Bakery, a vocational training program for individuals facing barriers to employment, offers take-and-bake bread options for you to heat up at home. For a gluten-free loaf, Mudd Creek offers a “Gluten Free Bread Mix Bundle” with eight different mixes.
Abby Bradbury is an editorial intern at Madison Magazine.
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