At the Breadfarm bakery in Edison, just south of Bellingham, co-founders and owners Scott Mangold and Reneé Bourgault have been making artisan breads since 2003.

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When I was growing up in St. Louis, the baloney sandwiches at my parents’ apartment were the best.

Two slices of Wonder Bread, toasted, with Miracle Whip, iceberg lettuce, maybe a tomato slice and sweet pickle relish.

Friends called it “the baloney special.”

At their homes, it was usually served up on two plain slices of white bread with a squiggle of yellow mustard.

Not special.

But after a trip to Santa Cruz, Calif., in my mid-20s and a first encounter with a dense whole-wheat bread with slices that could stand up on their own, there was no returning to the bread that “builds strong bodies 12 ways.”

At the Breadfarm bakery in Edison, just south of Bellingham, co-founders and owners Scott Mangold and Renée Bourgault have been making artisan breads since 2003.

The ingredients tend to be fairly simple: flour with a high percentage of whole grains, water, salt and yeast.

Mangold says, “First and foremost, it’s about flavor and texture and to push the nutritional value.”

All the loaves are hand shaped and hearth baked.

He says, “Our bread requires the human touch, to make the right decisions at the right time.”

Baker Juli Hammond says she’s making loaves that are “alive.”

“We’re always trying to make the perfect loaf. “

They have a “dark crust. Thin and crispy, chewy.”

While working at a large table with other bakers, she asks, “What was your favorite dough yesterday, Joe?”

He answers, “multigrain. It was nice and timely.”

For Mangold, the perfect bread is “rich, dark-crusted, with a feathery, buttery textured interior.”

Just to hear the description is mouthwatering.

Scott Mangold, co-founder and co-owner of Breadfarm bakery in Edison, says ”our breads require the human touch. To make the right decisions at the right time.” (Alan Berner / The Seattle Times)