For years, speech, language, and learning specialist Shirley Ruch has worked with South Fork children with ADHD, autism, and other developmental disabilities. As her students grew up, she saw that they needed meaningful and supportive employment. In this regard, her newly launched South Fork Bakery is an extension of her teaching and coaching career.
Working out of the professional-quality kitchen at Bridgehampton’s Hayground school, Ruch and her bakers make cookies two days a week, and then sell them at local farmers’ markets and specialty stores. Her employees, former students, are immersed in all aspects of the business, including packaging, sales, marketing, and business management. They clearly know their way around the kitchen.
Highly recommended: the intensely flavored Chocolate Chunky cookies, with white and dark chocolate chunks, raisins, and unsweetened coconut, and the superrich Blondies. Cookies come individually packaged, so they stay sand-free at the beach.
South Fork Bakery cookies are available at the Hayground, Sag Harbor, Springs, and Hampton Bays farmers’ markets as well as Serene Green Farm Stand in Sag Harbor, Schiavoni’s IGA in Sag Harbor, Jimmy Jim’s Deli in Noyac and Goldberg’s Bagels in Southhampton. Individual cookies are $4, bags for $7 at farmers’ markets. Stores are pricing them similarly, but sometimes not exactly the same. Schiavoni’s IGA in Sag Harbor is selling individual cookies for $3.59, bags for $6.99.
South Fork Bakery, 631-725-7166, www.southforkbakery.com