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Places to order for fresh-baked pies in Manteca

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Places to order for fresh-baked pies in Manteca

La Triguena Bakery owners Leticia and Juan Ramirez are pictured showing freshly baked teleras from their commercial oven. The couple, who has owned the bakery for 20 years, start baking pies and br...


POSTED November 8, 2013 8:47 p.m.

Thanksgiving dinner, for many traditional families, would not be complete without that main dessert staple – pumpkin pie.

But as hectic holidays go, more often than not it is almost impossible to squeeze in precious time to prepare a homemade one for family and friends to enjoy.

Fortunately, there are few places in Manteca where freshly baked pies can be ordered or purchased practically piping hot straight from the baking oven. Of course, there are the old stand-by outlets like the major grocery chains where you can pick up this traditional Thanksgiving delicacy sans the fresh-from-oven smell and taste because these are the pre-frozen kind. But those with discriminating pie-tasting buds have at least two bakeries in town that will be more than happy to bake that special dessert for you.

These two Manteca bakeries are Le Croissant Bakery & Café on Maple Street across from the Post Office, and La Triguena Bakery at the northwest corner of East Yosemite and North Grant Avenue, just across the street from the now-defunct Kelly Brothers Brewing Company (the former El Rey Theater).

Leticia Ramirez is singularly proud of the fact she and husband Juan make all their pies as though they are making it for their family. That’s because “that’s where it all started” for them, said Leticia who, like her husband, come from large extended and multi-generational families. It is not uncommon for their families to have 40 to 50 people gathered together for holiday dinner celebrations at home, like Thanksgiving.

“My cousins, my brothers and sisters and their kids, all come,” Leticia said.

“Mom does the homemade (turkey) stuffing and mashed potatoes. My mom also cooks the turkey. I’m the one that always brings the sweets. I’m known as The Sweet Lady,” she added with a laugh.

Pumpkin pie is, hands down, the most requested pie at Thanksgiving, she said. And because “pumpkin is very delicate” and has to be consumed right away, she requests that they be ordered in advance for them to be as fresh as possible when they are set at the Thanksgiving dining table. Three days before pick-up would give them enough time to get the orders prepared.

“We make everything here,” she said.

In fact, Juan comes in as early as 5 a.m. to start baking the teleras – similar to a Portuguese sweet bread but smaller – so they can be delivered while still very fresh from the oven to La Costa restaurant on Moffat Boulevard in Manteca.

And if pumpkin pie is not your thing, you can always order pumpkin empanadas from La Triguena.

“We make empanadas out of pumpkins. They’re really nice. This is our original recipe. We’ve been doing it since we opened 20 years ago,” Leticia said.

They can also bake other types of pies besides pumpkin for the holidays – i.e., apple, pineapple, strawberry, and lemon pies.

It’s the same at Le Croissant. Owner and baker Botha Walters said that while pumpkin is always the most popular during the Thanksgiving holiday, she makes other pies as well such as chocolate cream and banana cream pies. Like La Triguena, she suggests that pie orders be made in advance not only to guarantee freshness but to make sure orders don’t get caught in the holiday rush.

For those with exotic palates, Aki’s Food to go & Oriental Grocery in Manteca, which is an Asian store at 745 N. Main St., offers leche flan or custard pie, and bibingka or Filipino rice cake that is traditionally eaten during the holidays. They may be ordered ahead of time also in time for Thanksgiving.

To place orders for fresh pies, call:

•La Triguena Bakery – (209) 824-1681

•Le Croissant Bakery – (209) 416-9101, or (209) 416-9032

•Aki’s Food to go & Oriental Grocery – (510) 304-5838.

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