Fresno woman opens home bakery

FRESNO, Calif.

Crystal and Brandon Lanas came all the way from Sanger to pick up a homemade cake. Their parents recently visited Farmer Kathys home bakery in Northwest Fresno. Crystal said, "Actually my dad was working and they saw her sign so they came and were interested and they tried her peach pie. They thought it was awesome."

The $10 peach pie has been Kathy Baker's biggest seller. In March she opened up shop at home after the California Homemade Food Act went into effect. Baker said, "I think what California was trying to do with this act was trying to get some money in family's pockets."

Through word of mouth Kathy has been busy selling cookies and baked goodies - this after sprucing up the front of her house. "I actually put in that brick wall. I laid the concrete. I put in the handrail. I bought an umbrella. I actually fixed this up. I got this neat screen, a little bakery screen."

Kathy explained for $18 you can apply on-line for a home-based food business through the Fresno County Environmental Health Department. "You have to fill out a bunch of stuff for the health department. You have to send them all your recipes and you have to give them a floor plan for your kitchen and where you're going to be storing things."

Farmer Kathy expected to sell a lot more produce from her backyard. She grows everything from cantaloupe and zucchini to tomatoes.

The California Homemade Food Act allows people to sell baked goods and items like jellies at home. It obviously came along at the perfect time. Baker said, "This was really a dream to work out of my home."

And with a last name like "Baker," Kathy was born to churn out baked deliciousness. A new offering features peach stuffed with pecans, brown sugar and butter.

Farmer Kathys only opens her home bakery on Sierra Madre near Delno on weekends because she spends about 18 hours baking on Friday. She also caters and bakes pastry baskets for local businesses.

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