stress-inspired chicken tagine
Stress-inspired chicken tagine

There was an evening, quite a few years ago, when I was in the kitchen after a stressful day at work and was asked why I was spending so much time making an unnecessarily elaborate meal when I could be in the lounge, relaxing with a glass of wine, and ordering Chinese for delivery. My response was immediate and profound, although I didn’t realize it at the time: “because I’m in my element when I’m in the kitchen; cooking and baking are my favorite ways to relieve stress.”

A decade later, I found myself in a different kitchen after being put on a 3-month medical leave of absence because of debilitating levels of anxiety that were literally making me go blind in one eye. I was making bread and was asked why I was unnecessarily busying myself with making bread when I could be relaxing and working on managing my anxiety. I responded just as quick but this time I actually heard what I said (I was working on being mindful at the time and it worked!) : “because when I make bread, it’s one of the only times I don’t feel anxious… I just want to make bread for a living.”

And there you have it, the birth of Behind the Breadbox.

Okay, so maybe there’s a bit more to the story. Stress and anxiety may have been the dirt that the seeds of Behind the Breadbox were planted in, but listening to the wisdom of friends, embracing vulnerability and asking questions, and learning how to dare greatly were the water and fertilizer that made those seeds grow and flourish.

2021 was an amazing first year of business for Behind the Breadbox and 2022 is shaping up to be even better. This blog brings to life a dream I had from the very beginning to invite you, my friends and customers, behind the breadbox (sorry, I had to do it) to see what makes this bakery so fun, yummy, and inspirational. For those of you who have met me, you know how much I love to talk about what I’m learning, what I’m working on, and how I plan on making your experience better with each loaf. Now, all of those passionate ideas and inspirations will be in blog-form too, as well as innumerable other things like recipes, recommendations, tips for at-home baking, and yes, science-nerdy-research bits on everything bread-y.

Welcome behind the breadbox, friends! And thank you, truly, for letting me make bread for living.


headshot of Tom Nechodomu in a red flannel shirt and a baseball cap

Tom Nechodomu

Owner of Behind the Breadbox