Monday, April 6, 2009

A childhood memory

Every Sunday my dad would go to the B&W bakery and bring home jelly donuts, a pecan ring and a crumb cake for breakfast after church.

The bakery was next to the grocery store my mom walked to every week.. Packards.

Where Packards once stood is a Target store now but the bakery is still as I remembered...

November 19, 2006
New Jersey Weekend: Oh! The Places They Crowd -- Sunday; 7 a.m.: Crumb Cake by the Numbers
The numbers dispenser at B & W Bakery in Hackensack was empty, but that didn't matter. The eight customers stood in a neat line, waiting to order by the display case reserved for the bakery's signature crumb cake, which is about three-quarters streusel atop rich yellow cake. The rest of the bakery, which has been in business since 1948, was lined with the standard multilayer glass cases full of tarts, cakes and the like. But everyone ordered and paid near the crumb cake, and many bought it, paying $5.75 for a 5-by-8-inch piece.
Though the bakery had been open for only an hour, the ''oven guy'' had been in since midnight, and seven more bakers had arrived by 4 a.m. At 7:07, as a new tray of crumb cake replaced the first one of the day and the crowd grew to a dozen, a fresh roll of numbered tickets was inserted in the dispenser. No. 7 went to Bill Schroeder, a Rochelle Park police officer who had just finished his shift and was picking up some crumb cake and doughnuts to share at the Giants' game that afternoon.
No. 12 was Harold Hanson of the Teaneck Fire Department, on his way to work. He bought a melting ring and crullers. At 7:25, Eileen Tepe of Bergenfield, holding No. 25, ordered a loaf of seeded rye, a pecan ring and some rolls for her daughter Lauren to take back to the University of Delaware.
As a woman, Ms. Tepe was in the minority in the crowd. Buying baked goods seems to be something like taking out the trash: a traditional man's job and, maybe, one he can't mess up.
''The wife sends them out,'' said Ron Kraft, one of B & W's owners.
B & W Bakery, 614 Main Street, Hackensack; (201) 342-5577. CARL SOMMERS
QUICK BITE/Hackensack; Crumbs to Die For
It's well known that the raison d'ĂȘtre of crumb cake is the streusel topping. The cake base is merely the vessel by which the topping is transported to one's mouth. The higher the crumb, the better.
B&W Bakery in Hackensack, a 56-year-old institution that bills itself as ''home of the heavy crumb cake,'' may have one of the best streusel-to-cake ratios in the state. Nearly three-quarters of every bite consists of clumps of just-sweet-enough, melt-in-your-mouth crumb.
B&W -- the initials stand for Boehringer & Weimer, the original owners -- is a traditional German bakery that does sell other cakes, cookies and pastries. But the business is based on crumb cake, made with the same carefully guarded secret recipe used since 1948. A current co-owner, Ron Kraft, who first worked at the bakery 34 years ago, makes an average of 2,000 pounds of streusel a week, depending on the season. In addition to the amount of topping on his cake, he attributes its appeal to the fact that it is always fresh: the crumb cakes are baked all day long, until 5 p.m. ''We just bake 'em as we need 'em,'' Mr. Kraft said. ''And people keep coming back, because we're consistent.'' It doesn't hurt that the cake is also a bargain -- $5.50 for a strip big enough to serve six.

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