Becca Crofts loved baking from a young age. However, it was a graduation present from her parents that set her on her path to a career in baking.
It was as a reward for gaining a first-class degree that her parents surprised her with a place on a short course at The School of Artisan Food. She’s now Head Pastry Chef and Bakery Manager at Marmadukes in Sheffield.
“I took part in the Introduction to Patisserie course with Emmanuel Hadjiandrou and at the end of it, I didn’t want to leave!” she said.
However, as a Finance Assistant she could not afford to do a full-time course. She spoke to the School Director, who supported her in applying for a bursary and found herself on the Advanced Diploma at the School.
“The day I got my letter of acceptance to the school was one of overwhelming excitement, as I knew there was an extraordinary adventure ahead!”
“In the pastry kitchen, I felt my creativity alight, and found joy in developing unique flavour combinations; something which has never left me. I felt right 'at home' at the school. There was this sense that I’d finally found myself on the right path. It felt like this was where I was meant to be. Alongside that, I was greeted by the friendliest of staff, given warm croissants and immediately introduced to a group of other passionate foodies.”
Becca added: “Most crucially, my exposure to high quality, sustainable ingredients and artisanal production processes cultivated a new level of respect for ‘slow food’ systems; long fermented breads, hand rolled chocolate truffles, organic business growth."
“As artisan bakers we need to strive for quality from the ground up, working with ethical suppliers, nurturing eco systems, creating safe and joyful working environments, and producing exceptional products.”
She added: "Being a student at The School of Artisan Food really and truly changed my life.”