The Great 2020 Bakery Boom

Even sunny optimists have difficulty detecting silver linings in global pandemics. But if there’s one we can all agree on, it’s the rise of bakeries of all shapes and sizes.

In eight months, New York has gone from a nadir of panic-deplenished grocery shelves to a metropolis flush with sheets of artisanal focaccia, bushels of bialys, and homemade English muffins. While food insecurity persists, much of it caused by jobs lost during lockdown, some laid-off cooks have tried to support themselves by launching their own cottage industries and selling their goods on Instagram.

The pandemic might have forced these kitchen workers off traditional career paths, but it also gave them opportunities to experiment creatively, channeling their heritage into confections like Korean hotteok, Filipino doughnuts, and Chinese mooncakes.

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