by Brianna Da Cruz, Tolman High School Marketing & Management Academy Student
The owner of Just like Nana’s, Karen Griffin (Nana), has a commercial kitchen where she bakes a Jewish pastry called rugelach (or rugulah) that she sells wholesale to cafes, specialty markets, and other outlets through distributors like Farm Fresh RI’s Market Mobile service. Customers who buy her products enjoy delicious wholesome, authentic, and ethical pastries.
Starting from the young age of 10 or 11, Nana was baking with her grandmother, who passed down her tradition of using wholesome ingredients. Nana had just retired from teaching and decided she wanted to do something else. She remembered how good she was at baking, especially rugelach, and realized that others might be interested in her products. That ended Nana’s retirement and she began her own little business — whih she now has had for about five and a half years. Nana said that she gets a lot of exposure from Farm Fresh RI. She stated that Farm Fresh RI delivers her products and helps her get more exposure to other potential customers.
Many people may not be familiar with rugelach. It is a Jewish pastry made with dough that includes fillings. Nana makes her dough with sour cream, rather than the cream cheese that many recipes call for, thus giving it its unique taste. Nana’s rugelach flavors incldue raspberry walnut, apricot walnut, chocolate fudge, and cinnamon.
All of Nana’s products are produced by her, so they are fresh. She has many other delicious products that are also available. You can try her Savory Scones, Cheddar & Herbs de Provence or Parmesan-Basil, her Cinnamon Bar, Apricot Macaroon Bar, Raspberry Macaroon Bar, and Russian Tea Biscuit, as well as her Pecan Pie rugelach, a fall favorite. If you are looking for a gift for someone, Nana offers variety platters in two sizes in all of her flavors. Come holiday time, she also offers a Holiday Collection, Cinnamon Christmas Wreath with hot chocolate spoon.
Just Like Nana’s baked goods are recognized by locals, retailers, and the news. One local, Charlos Gioglio, claims they are the “Best Rugelah in Rhode Island.” Just Like Nana’s has been recognized by local newspaper East Bay Life, and The Rhode Show on ABC. as well as in a front page write-up in the Providence Journal‘s food section.
To purchase Nana’s baked goods, visit her website for a list of retail locations, or place an order by phone at (859) 333-9096 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A group of students from the William E. Tolman High School Marketing & Management Academy in Pawtucket recently took on a project of writing profiles about some of the local farms that work with Farm Fresh RI. This was a great opportunity for students to get interviewing experience, learn about the local food system, and see it firsthand. Thank you to all of the students and farmers who participated!