Baking friends rise to the challenge

Rising stars . . . Bakers Andrea Dudding (left) and Carolyn Leslie are the faces of their booming Owaka enterprise, 2 Birds Baking.

Two Owaka women are bringing the community together through their love of all things doughy.

What started as Andrea Dudding and Carolyn Leslie’s love for baking breads has transformed into a time to look forward to for many locals, and not just from Owaka.

A suggestion from a friend led to the women taking their homemade, hand›crafted breads to an impromptu market two weeks before Christmas, where they were ‘‘blown away’’ by the response.

‘‘We sold out within an hour and a›half, which prompted a few more market trips and ultimately the creation of 2 Birds Baking,’’ Ms Dudding said.

They have been surprised, and delighted, to receive interest from Balclutha to Gore.

The two women have adapted a regular small business to allow for contactless pickups (courtesy of Covid›19) from the Owaka Community Hall, where they bake and sell their bread.

‘‘We’re happy there’s a nice rate for locals to hire the hall kitchen.’’

The positive feedback from the community has made the hard work satisfying for the women, as they take pre›orders and bake the bread on the day of selling.

Their ‘‘mystery bake of the day’’ was a way for them to collect feedback from their customers with trial breads.

‘‘We’re here for a bit of fun, and we are always happy to barter with anyone,’’ Miss Dudding said.

‘‘We did some trial baking for a while and the team at the Owaka Swap Shop were our taste testers.’’

The women have had to adapt to being ‘‘only four hands and two people’’ but said they enjoyed playing around with different sizes and flavours of bread to suit the people who ordered from them.

‘‘We’ll keep baking if people enjoy our bread as much as we do.’’

› We’ll keep baking if people enjoy our bread as much as we do. ›

Bread lovers . . . 2 Birds Baking co›owner Carolyn Leslie stands by for a busy summer day of making dough at the Owaka Community Hall. PHOTO: SUPPLIED