Spring Spark: Oberon’s Rose Pavlova

What a night! Our Oberon’s Rose Pavlova won the playful competition for best dessert. The dessert was collaboration between PNB’s principal dancer Lucien Postlewaite and our pastry team, led by Sam Stout, our Retail Pastry Assistant Manager. They named their creation Oberon’s Rose Pavlova. It is a rose meringue with raspberry lychee mousse, fresh berries and gold dust.  

All the desserts were excellent and it’s no exaggeration to say there were only winners, none more than the attendees who enjoyed an indulgent evening.  

The other desserts were: 

  • The Strawberry Chocolate Spark, a sugar cookie exploding with chocolate a sweet burst of strawberry by Destiny Wimpye and Bell’s Cookie Co 
  • The Puck-Aron, a sweet, spicy and mischievous macaron by Eric Hipolito Jr. & Cecilia Iliesiu with Lady Yum 
  • Velvet Scoopability, a sophisticated and classic chocolate raspberry swirl by James Kirby Rogers with former PNB dancer Kari Brunson’s Frankie & Jo’s.  

We’re honored to have been a part of it and to have had the opportunity to work with Lucien Postlewaite and his world-traveler’s knowledge of pastries. 

Cornetti Roly Poly

As part of our 30th Anniversary celebrations, I’m revisiting some beloved classics. Long-time Macrina fans will remember the Roly Poly, my all-time favorite breakfast pastry. With the home baker in mind, I have scaled down the recipe and streamlined the process, making it more accessible.
The Roly Poly holds a particularly tender spot in my heart, as it takes its cues from the homemade cinnamon rolls my Grandmother Bakke would whip up for the family. I would watch my grandmother work her magic, tossing together flour, yeast, milk, and the like — never a measuring cup in sight.
While we use our cornetti dough in our café version, the filling — a mélange of raisins, walnuts, coconut, and sugar — remains a faithful homage to my grandmother’s original creation.
And take note, Roly Poly fans: we’ll be featuring them in the cafés beginning in May.  -Leslie Mackie

Printable PDF of this recipe here. 
Read more about Macrina Bakery on our blog.
Makes 6 large rolls


¾ cup whole milk
¾ tsp dried yeast
4½ tsp granulated sugar
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1½ cups + 1½ tsp unbleached all-purpose flour, divided
¾ tsp kosher salt
12 Tbsp (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, chilled

¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup brown sugar
½ cup walnuts, roasted and coarsely chopped
¼ cup seedless raisins
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ cup shredded, unsweetened coconut
½ tsp pure vanilla extract

1 egg
1 tsp water

4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
4 Tbsp (½ stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 Tbsp milk

Warm milk up to 90°F and place in a medium bowl. Add the yeast, sugar and vanilla. Whisk to combine well. Let stand for 5 minutes to allow the yeast to bloom and become frothy.

Add 1½ cup flour and salt to the bowl. With a spoon, combine the mixture, incorporating all the dry flour and scraping the sides of the bowl. Mix for 1 minute, cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight.

After the dough has risen, remove it from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature.

Chop the chilled butter into small pieces and place in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the remaining flour and, using medium speed, cream until the butter is smooth, approximately 2 minutes.

Scrape the creamed butter onto a floured work surface. Pat into a 6 x 6 x ¾-inch block.

On a floured work surface, pull dough out and pat into a 12 x 12-inch rectangle. Place the butter block on the right half of the dough. Cover with the left side evenly (so it looks like a closed book). Rotate the dough with open seam down and roll out dough to a 20 x 8-inch rectangle, then fold in a “book fold” by bringing the two far ends to the center and folding in half. Do one more turn following the same method, rotating with the open seam down and rolling the dough out to a 20 x 8-inch rectangle. Cover the dough with plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Remove from refrigerator and do a final book fold. Rest the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the filling.

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.

Brush sides and base of jumbo muffin tins* with canola oil. Line the base of the cups with a square 3 x 3-inch piece parchment paper. Set aside.

On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough out to 20 x 8-inch rectangle. Spritz with water and top with filling mixture, spreading it evenly over dough.

Begin rolling up the dough, starting with the top edge moving down towards you, into a long roll like a cinnamon roll. Finish with the roll resting on the bottom seam.

Cut into 6 equal pieces. Tuck seam under roll and place in prepared jumbo muffin cups. Cover with plastic and let sit overnight in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Remove rolls from refrigerator and let them rest at room temperature for 45 minutes.

Whisk the egg and 1 tsp water together to make egg wash. Brush on top of the rolls and bake on the center rack for 40 to 45 minutes, or until deep golden brown.

Let cool for 5 minutes and invert rolls from the muffin tins (the bubbling sugar will drip down and cause them to stick).

Add the cream cheese, butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Mix for 1 to 2 minutes until smooth. At the end, add the milk to thin the consistency. Set aside.

Spread with cream cheese frosting and enjoy!

Crew Favorites: Charcuterie, Soup Bowls, & More

Corrina Steffens-Highley, the Assistant manager at our Kent café, oversees the staff and operations at the café. When asked about the best compliment she has ever received, Corrina doesn’t hesitate: “Someone told me I have a glowing personality.” As the morning rush begins, that glow fills the café as she greets many regular customers by name. “It’s not just work to me,” she explains. “It’s like a second family.”

At the end of the workday, Corrina returns home to her first family. Hailing from a large Italian-American family, she has always found meals to be central to family life and takes pleasure in hosting meals at her home and sharing food with her extended family.

“I love to find creative uses for Macrina products,” she says. One of her recent favorites is a spin on the classic cream cheese and lox on bagels. “Our Savory Pinwheel is a lot lighter than a bagel and the flavors go really well together. Simply cut it in half horizontally, wam it gently, spread one side with cream cheese and top it with the salmon. It’s so good.”Another favorite is using the Mini Casera loaf as a soup bowl. “I cut the top off the loaf, hollow it out, and fill it with clam chowder or tomato bisque,” she says. This works well with both fresh and day-old loaves.

Corrina excels at transforming Macrina’s leftover breads into tasty appetizers. “Butter boards are an excellent starter. Basically, you soften butter and add whatever you like. Roasted garlic is great, as is lemon dill,” says Corrina. She creates crostini with old bread by slicing it, brushing both sides with olive oil, and baking them at 350°F for 10–15 minutes. The crostini are perfect for dipping into flavored butters.Crostini (or Sardinian flatbread) also work well on charcuterie boards. Corrina uses a large cutting board as a canvas. “I think of it as a big picture,” she says. “You fill in the picture with sliced meats, cheeses, olives, and crostini. In the end, it looks beautiful. It’s my art.”

Baking with the Stars: PNB & Macrina Bakery

The worlds of dance and dessert are set to collide this spring, as Macrina Bakery partners with Pacific Northwest Ballet (PNB) for the Spring Spark — a whimsical fundraiser where creativity, community, and confections take center stage.

The Spring Spark, a one-night event, will see the transformation of the Francia Russell Center into a fantastical culinary wonderland, where ballet dancers, local distilleries, and Seattle’s dessert virtuosos join forces to create never-before-tasted delicacies. Guests will have the pleasure of sampling and voting for their favorite desserts and signature cocktails. 

Get your Spring Spark ticket here! 

Macrina’s baking team, including founder Leslie Mackie, Pastry Chef Katarina Ducharme and Pastry Associate Manager Sam Stout, has partnered with PNB star Lucien Postlewaite, who is nearly as passionate about the culinary arts as he is about the stage. “Lucien has a world-traveler’s knowledge of pastries, and we had inspiring conversations about his favorite pastries in Paris and Spain,” Leslie says. “It’s an honor to collaborate with him, and I can’t wait for the world premiere of our dessert.” 

Lucien says, “I see food as I see ballet — an opportunity to layer sensation, emotion, flavor, texture, and beyond. I’m thrilled by the opportunity to work hand in hand with Leslie and the Macrina team to craft a dessert that dances on the palate.” 

As May 6 fast approaches, Sam has taken the lead. “When you get people in a conversation about food and you can tell they’re really passionate about flavors and profiles and mouthfeel and the experience of a well-made dish or dessert, that’s when it really gets fun. Lucien has quite the palate and many great ideas.” 

The collaboration has been nothing short of sweet as Sam, Leslie, Katarina and Lucien work to get everything just right, work through a final dress rehearsal, and, at last, the big-stage performance. 

And, in this playful competition in which there are only winners, let us not forget the other enchanting collaborations: Destiny Wimpye is paired with Bell’s Cookie Co, Cecilia Iliesiu with Lady Yum, and James Kirby Rogers with former PNB dancer Kari Brunson’s Frankie & Jo’s. And as a palate cleanser between bites of divine confections, guests can indulge in the savory culinary creations of James Beard-nominated chef Melissa Miranda of Musang. 

Come join us for the love of community, for the tantalizing food and drinks, and to support the electric magic PNB brings to our lives. Order your tickets for the Spring Spark here and ignite your passion for dance. 

For those unable to attend, but curious to taste the magic they conjured, we’ll be selling their wonderful creation in our cafes the weekend of May 5-7!

Local Supplier Focus: Cairnspring Mills

A century ago, thousands of wheat farms across America supplied numerous local mills. Today, however, most of those mills have closed, and milling has become centralized turning flour into an international commodity.

In Washington State, Cairnspring Mills bucks this trend, collaborating with nearby farmers dedicated to sustainable agriculture, milling each batch of grain separately to maintain the integrity and unique flavor of each field. At Macrina Bakery, we prioritize using locally sourced ingredients for several reasons, including enhanced flavor and nutrition.

Leslie Mackie, Macrina’s Founder, says, “Cairnspring works directly with the baker to customize the milling process to their needs. The regenerative conventional and organic varietal grains are highly flavorful, especially when milled in the Cairnspring fashion.” 

Supporting the local economy is another reason Macrina purchases ingredients from nearby sources. Leslie notes, “This approach reduces our carbon footprint, ensures fresher products due to close proximity, and invests dollars back into our community.” Our commitment to Cairnspring is long-standing and stems from our enduring partnership with the prestigious WSU BreadLab that breeds grain for flavor, led by Dr. Steven Jones. These locally-grown grains are milled at Cairnspring Mills and baked into many of our breads. Many of the loaves using local flours are among our most popular breads. “Cairnspring provides a steady supply of the high-grade flours we need, and the consistency is remarkable,” says Leslie. 

Cinnamon Swirl French Toast

Of all the recipes in Seasons, our latest cookbook, this recipe gets used more by our crew than any other. The creamy custard gives new life to bread slightly past its prime. Thick slices of day-old brioche make the best French toast. Fresh brioche works, too. Just be careful to dredge the tender slices—not a deep soak—since the fresh brioche will fall apart if oversaturated. Top each serving with a medley of berries and a dollop of vanilla whipped cream. Serve with maple syrup.
-Leslie Mackie

Printable PDF of this recipe here.
Makes 4 Servings

½ cup heavy cream
5 eggs
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 loaf Macrina Cinnamon Swirl Brioche
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 Tbsp butter
1 pint raspberries
1 pint blueberries
Maple syrup, for serving

½ cup heavy cream
2 tsp sugar
1½ tsp pure vanilla extract

Whisk together the heavy cream, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar and vanilla.

Cut brioche into 1-inch-thick slices. Dredge pieces in custard mix. Sauté brioche in a pan with vegetable oil and butter until both sides are golden brown. Top with fresh raspberries, blueberries and a dollop of vanilla whipped cream. Serve with maple syrup.

In a medium bowl, combine heavy cream, sugar and vanilla. Whip until mixture holds its shape, about 2 minutes.

Kilts for Kids: Supporting Ronald McDonald House Charities

Once again, Macrina Bakery is proud to participate in Kilts for Kids. Get a free drip coffee and cookie* at any of our locations when you show us your voting confirmation! 


Every year, the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) organizes various fundraising events to support the needs of children and their families. Among these events, Kilts for Kids stands out as a unique, engaging, and heartwarming annual fundraiser. Sporting kilts, participants invite voters to back their favorites with a $10 donation per vote. Since 2012, this high-spirited event has drummed up over $700,000, lending a vital lifeline to families who must travel to secure critical medical care for their children. Macrina leaped into the fray in 2019 after Manny Chao, Georgetown Brewery’s co-founder and avid RMHC supporter, extended an invitation. The more we uncovered about RMHC’s vital programs and services, the more interested we became. Their offerings range from Ronald McDonald Houses — a comforting haven for families with hospitalized children — to Ronald McDonald Family Rooms, providing a serene respite inside hospitals. Moreover, Ronald McDonald Care Mobiles deliver essential healthcare services to underserved communities. So, in 2023, we eagerly slipped into our kilts once more, snapping photos at our cafés and wholesale bakery. Since bribing people for votes is part of the game — and enriching our communities is as integral to our mission as making great bread and baked goods — we’re sweetening the deal by giving away a free coffee and cookie for every vote. Additionally, Macrina will make a matching donation for every employee vote. 

Vote between April 6-21: vote early and vote often! This is one kilt-raiser you can feel good about. From all of us at Macrina, thank you!


*excludes glazed Brown Sugar Shortbread Cookies. 

Macrina is Coming to Maple Leaf

We are delighted to announce that we will be opening our sixth café in the Maple Leaf neighborhood in June 2023!

We just started construction and plan to open mid-to-late June. 

“We’re so excited to open our first café since 2018,” says Scott France, president and co-owner of Macrina. “Our mission is to enrich our communities through the joy of artisan baking, and we’re eager to become part of the Maple Leaf community.” 

The building, located at 85th Street and Roosevelt Way NE, is across from Reservoir Park and a block from Saint Catherine’s. We look forward to serving nearby residents and passersby.  

Floisand Studio Architects has designed a bright, airy space that will be convenient for those on the go and comfortable for those wishing to linger. “We’re honored to be entrusted by the long-term owners to turn their building into a welcoming, light-filled café for the neighborhood,” says Scott. 

As we prepare to celebrate our 30th anniversary this year, the new café, our sixth, will provide an exciting capstone to our upcoming celebration. Stay tuned for news of the anniversary festivities and our official Macrina Maple Leaf opening.  

Strawberry Rhubarb Streusel Cheesecake

A ground almond pie crust, strawberry rhubarb compote and almond streusel topping add body and flavor to this delicate, creamy cheesecake. Our flaky pie dough also makes a great base if you want to save yourself some time. The active time to make this is modest but be sure  to have enough time to refrigerate it before serving to be sure it sets nicely. Top it with whipped cream if you’re feeling indulgent.
-Leslie Mackie

Makes one 9 inch cheesecake.
Printable PDF of this recipe here.


3 Tbsp whole almonds, roasted
½ cup granulated sugar
1½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp almond extract
8 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature

6 strawberries, cored and cut into 6 pieces each
1½ cups rhubarb, cut in ½-inch pieces
⅓ granulated sugar
½ tsp loose leaf hibiscus tea
1½ tsp fresh lemon juice

¼ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp + 2 tsp granulated sugar
¼ cup almonds, roasted and finely ground
¼ tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes

12 oz cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup kefir (or buttermilk)
2 eggs


Prepare a 9-inch cake pan by pressing a 12 x 16-inch piece of parchment into it. The overhang helps to lift the pie out after it has chilled.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the almonds, sugar and flour. Process for 1 to 2 minutes until the almonds are finely chopped. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl. Add the extracts and melted butter. Mix with a wooden spoon to combine well. As evenly as possible, press into the prepared cake pan creating a ⅛-inch thick crust that runs up the sides about 1¾-inch. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. Set aside.

Combine all compote ingredients in a sauce pan. Over medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes or until the rhubarb is tender and the compote has thickened. Pour compote into a bowl and let cool for 30 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, add all streusel ingredients. Using medium speed, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the texture is coarse like sand. Set aside.

Reduce oven temperature to 300°F.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the cream cheese and sugar. Cream until smooth, approximately 3 minutes. Add the kefir (or buttermilk) with the mixer running. Pause and scrape the sides to ensure all is incorporated.Add the eggs one at a time, waiting for each to be fully incorporated before adding the next. Scrape the sides and mix again to ensure all is incorporated. Pour the cheesecake batter into the pre-baked pie shell. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the cheesecake mixture is just set.

Top the cheesecake with the strawberry rhubarb compote and then the streusel mixture. Increase the oven temperature to 350°F and bake another 20 minutes. The streusel topping should be a light golden brown.

Cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, then refrigerate for 3 hours before serving.  Enjoy!

OSL & Macrina: Partnering to Make a Difference

Ever wonder how Macrina makes just enough fresh loaves of bread and an assortment of pastries every day to satisfy our customers’ appetites week in and week out? We don’t. We make extra, enough so that though we may run out of some pastries and loaves, a customer who shows up right before closing will still find something satisfying. Additionally, we inevitably wind up with a few misshapen loaves and pastries that don’t meet our standards.  

So, what do we do with what we refer to as fresh overages?  We donate to a handful of food banks and local nonprofits. One of our key partners is OSL. Originally called Operation Sack Lunch, OSL was founded in 1989 with the distribution of 30 sack lunches on the streets of Seattle. Now they serve about 2 million healthy meals to those who struggle with hunger in our community every year. They hire many staff members from their client base and provide an equitable wage and generous benefits designed to combat poverty-level wages. They encourage positive life changes and forward motion.   OSL picks up overages from our cafes and bread production facility in Kent and incorporates the bread and pastries into their meals. “None of Macrina’s pastries last long in our meal lines,” says Abid Choudhury, OSL Operations Director. “They are getting snatched up real fast. They really are a gift.” “We are grateful for our partnership with OSL,” says Leslie Mackie, Macrina’s founder. “They are immediately getting our day-end pastries and breads and making them part of a nutritious, dignified meal for those in our community who are in need of support.”