Home Baked

From Crumble Beginnings:
The Home Baked Story

Meet Liz Means, Chief Home Baker

Liz, 20. Not baking, but in her favourite place - the kitchen, circa 1983.

I’m a proud third-generation baker.
Whenever I eat a chocolately slice or buttery biscuit, it takes me back to school holidays with both my grandmothers—learning pastry from Nana, and perfecting pikelets and ginger kisses with Granny.

“I grew up on a farm in Brookside, Canterbury. We were a classic rural Kiwi family and there were always cake tins on the table.”

Every Saturday I had the job of refilling the tins with two slices, two biscuits and two cakes; enough to last the week. That was back when baking was fuel!

I took home economics throughout school, then kept baking at home through a 14-year career in banking (it was always meant to be—there’s only one letter’s difference after all). After my daughter and son were born, I decided to step back into a kitchen and give it a proper go. My friend and I started a catering business in 2000, opening a small service in the capital city.

Liz’s mother Jean (left) and Liz’s daugher, Hayley, enjoying the splendours of mum’s baking (right).

The business grew and we moved to a kitchen on Willis St. It was after the 2015 Kaikoura earthquake that we set up an online Christmas baking gift service. With so many businesses closed or relocated and less catering orders coming in, it was a way to reach our community, and keep our own lights on and hands busy. Crazy to think that’s sowed the seeds for what is now Home Baked.

“I want Home Baked to be the reason you pause, take a moment, and treat yourself and someone you care for to a good ol’ cuppa.”

Our boxes feature classic Kiwiana, and sometimes we like to sprinkle in a batch of new recipes. We hope they bring up fond memories and give us all a reason to keep sharing the classics of home baking with the next generation.

Liz Means, Wellington 2019 and her favourite biscuit

Liz’s favourite biscuit? Ginger kisses. Because I used to make them with Granny and we spent a long time perfecting this recipe (the same we’re still using for Home Baked now). I always made these when the kids were little, and they are still my go-to when I bake at home.

Meet the Team

Claire Walker,
Chief Wrangler

Growing up on a rural farm, Claire was always helping her mum or nana with the baking. Morning and afternoon smoko were an occasion never missed, where everyone came together over a cuppa and a chin-wag.

In the Home Baked office, Claire helps keep the ship on-course; you might find her mucking in with anything from social media and promotions to packaging orders and dispatch.

Claire’s favourite? Louise Slice. It’s always been my absolute favourite. When I was little, I used to think that mum made it up especially for me because my middle name is Louise!

Leanne Downs,
Sugar Magician

Leanne grew up watching her mum bake from the family recipe box; and her passion for traditional home baking was sparked. After high school she received her qualification in baking and pastry, and now her mum is the one who calls with questions!

As Head Baker, Leanne loves the creative reign she is given. Coming from similar backgrounds, it’s no surprise her style & ideas compliment Liz’s, and they work closely together to come up with the tasteful products.

Leanne’s favourite? Chocolate Chip. Biting into a classic chocolate chip brings back memories of sneaking that spoonful of condensed milk as a kid. Even now I still want to do the same 18 years later!

Nicole Murdoch,
Magician’s Assistant

Nicole fell in love with baking as a youngin’. Growing up, weekends were either spent at the bake house with her dad (dressed the part, in a chef jacket & bakers hat!) or at granny’s house getting to know all the traditional Scottish recipes... sneaking the odd sugary treat of course!

As a baker, Nicole takes a lot of pride in seeing the delicious Home Baked products she’s created fly out the door.

Nicole’s favourite? Belgium Biscuits. I couldn’t beat a piece of Scottish shortbread, but after 5 years in NZ, I’ve been converted to Belgium biscuits. Homemade jam... spiced biscuit... delicious pink icing... it’s perfection.