Growing up in Serbia my mother taught my sisters and I how to cook exactly like she did over years and years being very quick to point out anything and everything we did wrong. Her cooking was very simple but very tasty and most importantly made with lots of love. We took the lessons she taught us and used them to feed our families every day after until now.
From a corporate and government job background, I, someone who was known as always wanting more, left beautiful Serbia to a bold new world that we called North America. Facing every imaginable challenge to get to Toronto, I found myself missing the one thing that most reminded me of home. Fresh baked bread like my mother used to make. We knew how to cook soul food like her, but the baking part of it was left out. First and foremost for Serbians, is to have “normal” bread. “Normal bread” what is that? Hmmmmm. Bread that smells like home. Bread that is simple and freshly baked. So in the middle of North America without any clue on how to bake, I decided to call my mom and ask her a question that I believe was the biggest shock I could have possibly given her. “Mom can you teach me how to bake bread?”
Her first reaction was “You? Bread? (sigh) Ok.” My mom took a deep breath and told me her “recipe”. A little bit of salt, a little bit of yeast, some flour and water and knead the dough….wow, welcome to a new adventure Vera. This is how my life changing story started. Knowing me as lazy and definitely not one who would be able to bake I tried a few times and we all concluded I was a total idiot, but as always she didn’t give up on me. I played with dough for months feeling from an idiot to a total baking expert and back again. Above all, I caught myself being more excited baking over doing anything else.
After trying for years and years creating new pastries and breads with my sister by my side the entire time, we started going to farmers markets. The magic and energy of farmers markets brought us closer to fulfilling my age old dream to have a place where everything is just like home.
Then we found ourselves working the Brampton farmers market, which to us was the most beautiful farmers market of all. Home of beautiful people who really know how to show a warm welcome to newcomers. Brampton for us was a kind of by-invitation-town, we were welcomed with open arms.
I finally knew how to bake, how to cook, I had people who had faith in me and life brought more and more people to us who loved it. What next? We found a place in downtown Brampton and put in some hard work to make it all feel like family.
At Queen Gypsy we are sharing the cooking and baking and Serbian culture that my mother taught us with her magic hands and warm heart in the kitchen. Here we can have a few drinks, beautiful food, and spend time with beautiful family both old and new … and sometimes dance as Serbians do where everyone holds hands together.
Why Gypsy? We eat crazy beautiful food, we drink, we swear, and we laugh…simple. We are not strange, we are just not normal.
I would like to thank Brampton,
with LOVE to the world,
from the Queen and her loved ones.
Beauty can be eaten with a spoon.