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Snapshot: Matthew Kirshner



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Occupation: I am the owner of Uncle Matt’s Bakery and Cafe.

Family: My wonderful wife is Leah and four amazing kids are Samuel, Noah, Paige, and Charlotte.

Pets: We have one dog, Bella; two cats, C.J. and Beaux;and four chickens.

How long have you lived in Newtown? We have lived in Newtown for nine years.

What do you like to do in your free time? In the wintertime when I am not working, I like to go skiing with the family. The summertime I do enjoy surfing. When I am not doing either I am usually relaxing and watching TV.

What is your favorite book? I don’t really read many novels. I am usually looking through some of my old cookbooks for inspiration.

What is the best part about Newtown? My family and I love this community. When we first moved to Newtown, we were welcomed with open arms. I believe everyone truly cares for their neighbor and the town.

Who has been the greatest influence in your life? My mother and grandmother were my inspirations to pursue a career in baking. Even as a type-1 diabetic, my mother would not stop me from baking when I was young. My grandmother would have notes in her cookbook with my name on them for me to have as a reminder of my favorite treats.

Who is your favorite musical artist? If I had to pick just one, it would be the Grateful Dead. I do enjoy other classic rock music such as Beatles, Zeppelin, Dylan, and others.

What is your favorite food? I would have to say my mom’s chicken noodle soup. She uses big chunks of chicken and vegetables when she prepares it. She also has a trick when it comes to broth to noodle ratio.

What is your favorite TV show? My favorite TV show is an easy one, The Simpsons. I really connect to a few characters on the show. I have watched this show since the beginning, and now I get to enjoy the show with my kids.

If you could travel to the past or future, which would you choose and why? I would like to travel to the past. There are moments in life I think I would like to have witnessed. Although, I would not change anything to cause a ripple effect.

What is the greatest piece of advice you have ever been given? My mentor Chef Larsson taught me two things. First, “Less is more. Don’t overcomplicate desserts.” Second, “Never bake when you are upset, otherwise it will fail.

What is something you cannot live without? I can not live without bread. Something about the process and creativity that goes into it just astonishes me, and the aroma when it comes out from the oven.

What is your proudest accomplishment? I would have to say my proudest moment was when I opened the doors to the bakery. For almost 20 years as pastry chef, I wanted to showcase what I have been taught and to share with my community. I could not have done this without the love and support of my family and friends

Matthew Kirshner is The Newtown Bee's most recent Snapshot profile. —photo courtesy Matthew Kirshner
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