A bakery born out of necessity has been serving the residents of Corbeil and surrounding communities for nearly four years.
Mully’s Bakery located on Mully’s Farm serves gluten-free options “without compromising taste.”
Veronica Mulligan and her adult daughter Elizabeth are both actively involved in the running of the business, with a focus on gluten-free options.
“We were both diagnosed around the same time, as being allergic to gluten,” shared mom Veronica.
“And really, at the end of the day, we couldn’t go anywhere to eat. Now there’s a lot more options, but what we found was that cross-contamination became a problem, especially for people who are celiac."
Celiac disease is a chronic digestive and immune disorder that damages the small intestine. The disease is triggered by eating foods containing gluten. The disease can cause long-lasting digestive problems and keep your body from getting all the nutrients it needs.
"We wanted to provide them with a place where they could come without fear of cross-contamination so, there is not a spec of wheat anywhere on this farm. People can come with an absolute 100 per cent level of confidence that they can eat and feel well afterward.”
The pair say people are flocking to the farm for its baked goods.
“We are a certified gluten-free facility. It gives people confidence,” said Veronica.
They quickly discovered that finding gluten-free food was made even more difficult during COVID.
“So, we decided that we were going to open the bakery and provide pre-made meals as well for people who were at home, and maybe didn’t want to go into the city to go grocery shopping, that kind of thing. So, during the summer months during COVID we offered vegetable bags, and we also did the baking and the pre-made meals.”
Elizabeth has created a menu consisting of a wide variety of foods from sweets to meals.
“We make pies, cookies, brownies, and butter tarts. We also do pre-made meals that are frozen, soups, and birthday cakes,” Elizabeth stated.
The bakery is a 12-month operation.
“At Christmas, we do baking trays with cookies, dessert bars, a lot of Christmas-themed ones like eggnog bars,” said Elizabeth.
“And we do meat pies, the traditional tourtiere the French meat pie, and then we do another variation of meat pie that has a vegetable medley in it. They’re available throughout the year. They’re part of our frozen pre-made list.”
It is recommended that people phone ahead for frozen meals to avoid being disappointed.
“Because of demand for the product, to guarantee that we have it in stock, the best thing to do is to call ahead and place an order with us. It will take us a few days to get everything prepared. The other thing is you can always take a chance and see us at the Farmers’ Market in North Bay to see if we’ve brought it with us there,” advised Veronica.
The fruit found in many of Elizabeth’s recipes comes directly from the family’s own orchards.
Picked fresh the fruit goes directly from the orchards to the kitchen.
“We use the apples for our apple pies, we use those in our CSA program (community supported agriculture) as well, so people get fresh apples. And we use some of our blueberries that we grow here, our blackberries all end up in our products as well.”
But it doesn’t stop there.
“We also have some raspberries. They are limited but we’re expanding that next year, and we grow rhubarb. We procure the strawberries from Leisure Farms and then we use our own rhubarb in the rhubarb pie, so we try to get as much local as possible,” added Veronica.
“We’re building a secondary orchard and we’re currently sourcing peaches that will grow in this climate zone. All the recipes that we use in our facility are someone’s grandmother’s recipe, so either my grandmother, my husband’s grandmother, or my great-grandmother. So, everything Elizabeth uses has all come from our grandmothers. My grandmother was actually raised on an orchard in the Niagara region. So, pear pie, and peach pie, are all very common. Elizabeth’s number one seller is her bourbon peach cobbler. It’s to die for,” grinned Veronica.
The Mulligan’s often hear that is the freshness of their products that attracts customers, new and old.
“You can’t beat having hand-picked and immediately being cooked or added as an ingredient into a product. I think the fact that we are so local, everything is fresh, everything is handmade, nothing here starts out of a can or a jar, that kind of thing. And so there is that difference,” Veronica proudly stated.
The food options don’t stop with the bakery.
“We have quite a few celiac customers and when we opened up our chip stand, we actually had people coming in from Huntsville, Gravenhurst, and even as far as Timmins to try our gluten-free chip stand and bakery,” Veronica stated.
The bistro chip stand offers more than just French fries.
“We sell French fries, burgers, pogos, onion rings, hot dogs, specialty burgers like our Mully’s burger, and a variety of grilled sandwiches,” listed Elizabeth.
“In the chip stand we just make sure to use gluten-free products, and the things we can’t get we make ourselves, so the pogo batter, the onion ring batter, anything you can think of we can make gluten-free.”
Mully’s Farm has become the local “go-to” for quality food.
“When it is back to those basic principles of homemade cooking, that makes a difference and I think again, from the standpoint that it is gluten-free, we are now providing an option inside of our community both not only East Ferris, but the Nipissing Region at large with the opportunity to find food that is great tasting, it doesn’t taste like gluten-free. So, those in your family who do not need gluten-free are more than happy to eat it. It’s fresh, it’s healthy and most importantly it is delicious.”
The farm also grows an assortment of produce.
“We grow garlic, carrots, potatoes, and corn. They are some of our biggest items that we grow. And we grow lots and lots of tomatoes. We grow kale, swiss chard, cabbages, collard greens, squash, zucchini, radishes, turnips and everything we do is heirloom variety,” said Veronica.
“Our greenhouse is solely for peppers, so we grow beautiful fresh peppers.”
In addition to produce, customers enjoy farm-fresh eggs and maple syrup.
“The farm was created in 2015 when we went public and opened ourselves to the public doing more of the farm to table, offering CSA programs which is a cooperative share program where people buy a share into our farm produce and then they get a bag every week for a set duration of time. So, we usually start around July, and we end up finishing around October,” explained Veronica.
“So, people get to experience the harvest, things like tomatoes and onions and lettuces right through to fall squashes.”
For people looking to purchase a few items, a produce stand is conveniently set up between the bakery and chip stand on the farm property.
“So, that is very easy for people to come and get produce at the stand as they require it. Or even now they can still opt to purchase it through the share program and get roughly the next month and a half of harvest leading up to Thanksgiving. We typically shut down around the 14th or 15th of October,” Veronica pointed out.
North Bay residents will soon have a taste of Mully’s in their own backyard.
“In December of 2023 we will be opening a secondary restaurant inside Gateway Brewery that will be called Mulligan’s or Mulligan’s Pub, we haven’t decided that just yet. But that will also be a gluten-free facility, with higher-end pub-style food,” stated Veronica.
The business is available for catering. Last year it provided food for a visiting movie production.
A list of foods and hours of operation can be found on the farm’s website.
Swing by the North Bay Farmers’ Market on Saturdays where they have a booth, or visit their location at 854 Corbeil Road, Corbeil.
Starting September 3rd their hours of operation will change to Thursday to Sunday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. each day.
Bakery hours will change to 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.