Baking

Woodsider hopes to mix up the baking aisle with its new line of pies | News

With a swirl of fresh fruit and layers of raspberries and citrus, Jane Lane’s pies aren’t your typical boxed cake mix. Woodside’s Jane Mackey, the woman behind the torte mix, prepares to rock the pastry aisle.

Launched in early November, Mackey said she’s always had a passion for flavorful desserts. Cranberry Coconut, Chocolate Orange, and Raspberry Lemon are its three boxed offerings currently found at local grocers and on its website.

“I wanted to inspire people to cook again,” said Mackey, who moved to the Midpeninsula in 2006 before moving to Woodside this spring. “They don’t feel like they can do it because the mixes are pretty seamless. I wanted to create a bakery-quality dessert that anyone could make that looks beautiful in a simple way.”

The recipes, which she developed with pastry chefs during the development of the company, take only 15 minutes of preparation time, before they can be put in the oven. She wanted “foolproof” bakery-quality desserts. For example, his raspberry pie mix uses freeze-dried berries in the raspberry cake layer.

Mackey, who has a background in finance, started baking with her grandmothers, Mary and Linnis, who she says were amazing bakers.

“I’ve always cooked all my life; it’s what I always bring (to parties),” she said. “The rest of the food seems a bit out of place.”

She sold her accountancy business a few years ago and moved into the food industry, to take a “whole new direction” in her professional life.

Mackey made chocolates and said she loved creating flavor combinations.

“It was hard to get tasters because of COVID,” she said, noting that she started the business in 2020 and had a few setbacks due to supply chain issues associated with the pandemic. “I knew a few people who still had to get to the office, so they brought them to their office.”

Friends and family also served as guinea pigs.

She mixes and packs the boxes at KitchenTown in San Mateo, the peninsula’s food industry incubator.

She understands that at $15 a box, the mixes seem expensive, but says they’re still more affordable than buying a high-quality dessert from a bakery. Plus, there’s the added benefit of having a kitchen that smells great after cooking.

Shoppers at specialty grocery stores, like Draeger’s and Bianchini’s, were receptive to the idea of ​​a premium cake mix, Mackey said.

“Honestly, almost everyone, without even trying the sample, said, ‘Yeah, let’s try it,'” she said. “It’s something new and different in the market and they want to shake it up because it’s kinda (a) boring (the space).”

Ultimately, Mackey said she would like to expand into other areas – such as chocolates, baking equipment and carrying boxes for pies. She also plans to produce new torte flavors in the new year and said she would like to see her line nationwide in specialty stores.

The torte mixes are on the shelves of 10 Bay Area stores, including: Draeger’s Menlo Park and Los Altos locations; Bianchini in the Portola Valley; the Delucchi Market in Redwood City; Edgewood Market in Palo Alto; The Willow Market in Menlo Park. It’ll be in more stores in January, Mackey said.

They are on sale online at janelane.co.