Blackmarket Bakery: Chomping Contraband at OC Business Park [MOVED]

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Bakery Sign Orange County

No pirate swords were used to make Blackmarket Bakery pastries.

“Resistance is futile” at Rachel Marie Klemek’s Blackmarket Bakery in a business park near John Wayne Airport. The location is unlikely, but Klemek has been producing some compelling baked goods since 2004.

Klemek plays up the unusual in her branding, featuring labels with cake UFOs and tractor beams that pull people onboard. For probing, no doubt, since that seems to be an alien specialty. The logo is a pair of crossed swords and a tilted cake or skull, depending on how twisted you are.

Klemek was trained at the Culinary Institute of America, and the business park provided her with a low-rent forum for her baked goods. A fridge near the entrance showcases a number of tarts, including the Black Widow with dark chocolate in a dark chocolate shell. Blackmarket leaves little doubt about the provenance of their chocolate, selling massive bars of Belgian Callebaut. A table held single-wrapped scones and bags of powder-dusted Russian tea cookies. Blackmarket lines shelves with assorted shortbreads, brownies and bars, many flavored with chocolate.

Tart Orange County

Klemek named Maghreb Tart ($4) for the northwest African region that contains nations like Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. The buttery shell bathed in aromatic rosewater caramel that ensnared a pile of pistachios, almonds and dates. This dessert featured the kind of Middle Eastern flavor profile that I enjoy so much in baklava.

Bread Pudding Orange County

Pumpkin Ginger Bread Pudding ($4) was another fridge find, a brick of brioche and croissant soaked in pumpkin cinnamon custard and studded with candied ginger chunks and dried cranberries, which added a tart element. Topping the “pudding” was just enough caramel to amplify the flavors when heated.

Pastry Orange County

Their signature Blackmarket Bar ($2.75) is an addictive square with a buttery base and layers of flavor, including chocolate, dried apricots, black currants and a streusel top.

Brownies Orange County

Near the register, a stainless steel tray hosts Cabernet Brownies, a highly unusual offering flavored with hazelnut (Nutty Noir), dark chocolate (Brut Cacao) or currant & cherry (Special Preserve).

Klemek titled her side project Marché Noir (blackmarket in French) and utilizes wine flour, which is made using residual grape skins that remain after the Cabernet crush. It’s apparently high in iron, fiber and antioxidants.

Blackmarket Bakery packed plenty of enticing options into the small room, and an employee told me that it the stock was low after a recent food show. If that’s the case, I’ll return when Blackmarket’s back at full-strength, and I’m bringing reinforcements.

Blackmarket Bakery: Chomping Contraband at OC Business Park [MOVED]


Joshua Lurie

Joshua Lurie founded FoodGPS in 2005. Read about him here.

Blog Comments

gud food nd great chef

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