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Emma Finden-Crofts is a classically trained pâtissier who creates modern, elegant pastries and desserts and sells them at Rutland and Northamptonshire farmers’ markets and food festivals.
She learnt her trade working in professional kitchens in London, including The Wolsley. She combined her hands-on training with a patisserie diploma and then set up Lotus Bakery in Rutland in 2015.
Everything Emma produces oozes flavour and style. The presentation is contemporary without being gimmicky, the flavours are robust but balanced and the ingredients are seasonal, local and carefully selected. Fruit comes from a local grower, eggs are from Flitteris Park Farm and flour is made at Whissendine Windmill. Butter is always used – never margarine – and the chocolate is high quality Belgian Callebaut.
Cinnamon buns and frangipane tart are Lotus Bakery specialities. The frangipane flavours vary depending on the season and include fig and honey, apricot or mixed berries. The cinnamon buns are egg-free, made with spiced muscovado sugar and vanilla icing and absolutely delicious. Macarons are a popular wedding favour and individual opera cakes make an eye-catching dessert platter.
Savoury bakes vary but expect quiche made with mature cheddar and gruyere, tomato pepper tart with roasted peppers and goat’s cheese or rough puff pastry pasties. The descriptions sound simple but the products are a cut above the normal offerings and reflect Emma’s skill and the quality of the ingredients.
Customers can either buy from the Lotus Bakery stall at various farmers’ markets, including Oundle and Oakham, or place their specific orders for everyday cakes, celebration cakes, wedding favours and dinner party dessert platters.
Not many farmers’ markets can offer a trained pâtissier – don’t miss the opportunity if you see Emma and her amazing bakes. Or just give her a call.
By Anna Forgaard, Rutland & north Northants editor