Luijza Boldizsár – Luijza's Bakery at the Old Mill

Luijza Boldizsár is from Petroșani, county of Hunedoara, but she and her parents moved to the county of Harghita, where her grandparents lived. Many years ago, she came to Hosman, where, invited by and alongside the Cotaru family, she bought the old village mill house and, a few years later, renovated it and opened a traditional bakery with a wood-fired oven. She learnt the bakery craft as a child, for she grew up in her grandparents’ bakery in Harghita, where she used to help her father, who in turn learnt the trade from his father. She still remembers those evenings when, as a child, she went to bed on the oven which was still warm.

At Luijza’s Bakery at the Hosman Old Mill, she now makes four types of white and wholemeal flour bread: potato white bread, wholemeal bread, rye bread and seed bread. The potato bread is based on a family recipe that she has kept as such. Initially, the seed bread was made on demand for a restaurant, but she later changed the recipe and sold it at the market as well. Clients appreciated it and asked for other types, too, such as rye bread. She bakes bread three times a week: on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Luijza’s products can be bought in Sibiu at Green Friday Fair (organized on Fridays in Huet Square) or Transylvania Farmers’ Market (organized on Saturdays near Transilvania Hall).

Her bread is made with leaven, i.e. a bit of left-over dough that she keeps from previously baked bread. Before using it in the dough, the leaven is left to ferment for 13 hours at the proper temperature. Then, it is mixed together with the rest of the ingredients: flour, salt, water, potatoes or seeds, as the case may be. The dough is kneaded and then left to rise. Then, it is divided, weighed, shaped and ten pieces of dough are placed in wooden crates and left to rise once more. When they have risen, they are shaped on the working table and put in the oven, where they bake for 80 minutes. Over the course of a day, she can bake two full ovens, i.e. 110 loaves of bread. She uses willow wood and the ember of the first fire is used to heat up the oven the second time; the oven frequently stays hot until the next day, when she often bakes other doughs, such as hencleș, cozonac, baker’s pie, onion lichiu, lard pie, etc.

When bread is fresh out of the oven, she likes to eat it warm, with pork lard. She would like to make beer bread, too, as she has tasted some and very much enjoyed it, but even though she has tried, she hasn’t yet found the right beer.

A Tale of Bread

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