Prairie Mill Bread Co.
Opened in late 2008 by Owen Petersen, Prairie Mill Bakery in Edmonton traces its origins to a namesake operation that John and Karen Juurlink have run in Calgary for 14 years. It was through the Juurlinks that the now 27-year-old Petersen, a native of Sundre, Alta., got the bakery bug. Hired as a temp in 2001 to make Prairie Mill deliveries, Petersen’s role expanded, and soon he literally was up to his elbows in dough.
“I just fell into it,” says Petersen, who spent two-and-a-half years baking at Prairie Mill in Calgary while learning the craft from the Juurlinks.
They had fashioned a reputation baking a selection of “pioneer style” breads made with locally produced and ground organic grains, and other natural prairie ingredients such as Alberta honey. Traditional Prairie Mill selections include honey whole wheat, honey white, Yukon sourdough, nine-grain, milled flax, sunflower, whole wheat, corn millet, muesli whole wheat, cinnamon raisin and multigrain sourdough.
In some loaves, up to 95 per cent of ingredients are Alberta-sourced. Recently, the Juurlinks and Prairie Mill were among three Alberta firms honoured as initial recipients of the Alberta Food for Health Awards. In receiving the $10,000 Premier’s Award, Prairie Mill was particularly cited for using stone-ground Alberta flour and local honey.
Written by Nordahl Flakstad from Bakers Journal