Loaves of bread cool on a rack in a basement kitchen in Rockfall.
There are only a few inches to spare between a table, sink and ovens — a space a mere 100 square feet — but Kathleen Duffy's customers will never know the difference because of the commitment she's made to making bread.
"This is the old world method," says Duffy. "This has been, for thousands of years, how people make their bread."
Duffy, owner of Sweet Sage Bakery, has been baking bread for nearly 20 years, a hobby turned profession after too many stressful days at work.
By all counts, she's perfected the craft of artisan baking; her breads and other baked treats, which include scones, muffins and pastries, are sold at farmers' markets from Guilford to New Britain, food co-ops and direct retailers like .
The ingredients are simple: organic grain, spring water and salt.
"I like to keep it really pure, to let the grain shine," she says.
Duffy begins the bread making process days before a market, when she creates the base for her bread, known as a starter. Before the dough can be made, the starter is fed until the yeast appears.
Unlike some bakers, Duffy is in no hurry to rush her bread into the oven.
"If you want something to turn out really well, you have to be patient," she says. "I find people really respond, people like it, so this is what I do."
You can purchase baked goods from Sweet Sage Bakery at the Durham Farmers' Market every Thursday from 3 to 6:30 p.m.