Latino business owner pursues passion for cooking, bakes shells differently

San Antonio – Julie Contreras started her business Concha Style in 2020 to pursue her passion for cooking and baking.

Contreras holds a degree in biology with minors in neurobiology and chemistry. She said she uses those skills for small business owners.

“That’s where my background in chemistry comes in. I love the food chemistry of all these things,” explains Contreras in her home’s tiny kitchen, where she bakes her meals three days in advance.

Yeast and dairy-free are her specialty. She said she uses organic and locally sourced products.

“Yeast makes it healthier for you to digest all the bread and stuff,” she says.

One can find Contreras products at the Alamo Heights Farmers Market and Pearl Farmers Market.

“Friday is our mixing day, letting everything ferment, and then Saturday is our baking day,” she said. “Then it was Sunday morning and we woke up at 4:30 dawn and we finished our conchas and other stuff and focaccia. So it was all fresh, like it was not long before the market.”

Contreras said her family and friends are a big part of her success. She said she was moving to an industrial kitchen and opening a storefront.

“I think it’s important not to doubt yourself at all. It’s a lot like blind faith,” she said.

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