In excellent baked goods news, Dallas has a new bakery in East Dallas. Called Leila Bakery & Cafe, it's a bakery and soon-to-be cafe open at 6041 Oram St., in the space that used to be home to Jack's Kitchen, which closed in November.
Leila is a boutique bakery & cafe owned and operated by Chef Kelly Ball, who has had a thriving business selling her baked goods to coffee shops, restaurants, and farmers markets for three years, under the name "Naturally Curly Cook."
When the Jack's Kitchen space became available, she jumped on it. The location gives her a home base and a kitchen of her own, as well as a place to sell retail where people can buy her goods every day.
She says she loved the fact that it was in Lakewood, and also the quaintness of the space itself and its location in what is mostly a residential neighborhood.
Thanks to her participation in Good Local Markets, Naturally Curly Cook — and now Leila — has become known best for quiches and kolaches. They make everything from scratch, in an almost homemade fashion, including bread dough, and they shape all of their crusts by hand.
Their pies and quiches are unique in that they go very deep dish, with the sides measuring more than three inches high. "It's become a signature, and it's not like pies you will find anywhere else in Dallas," Ball says.
They also offer croissants, scones, cookies, and muffins in cool and unusual flavors like strawberry and blueberry streusel.
Their repertoire of quiche flavors includes the classic Lorraine, plus sausage & sage, chorizo, Florentine, mushroom-goat cheese, spinach & artichoke, Mediterranean, and butternut squash with smoked mozzarella.
Pie options include pecan, apple crumble, and a couple of intriguing flavors not commonly found including gingerbread pumpkin pie, chunky punkin pie, and gingerbread pear pie.
They also do bread pudding, both traditional and a chocolate version.
They're starting out small, with pastries and a few grab-and-go items, but the plan is to expand the menu to offer lunch dishes such as soups, sandwiches, and salads.
Leila is the name of her boyfriend Nikola Olic's aunt, who lives in Eastern Europe. It's an area that Ball has visited and it has inspired her baking, with doughs that are prototypically moist and dense in the Eastern European style.