California Bakery Creates ‘Pan Solo’ for Local Scarecrow Contest

The Force is strong with this one – the force of yeast, that is.

One House Bakery, a family-owned bakery operated by mother-daughter team Catherine and Hannalee Pervan, is becoming well-known in and out of the local community for its incredible baked creations.

“When we opened our first year, we heard about this scarecrow contest Benicia has, and we wanted to tie it into a bakery in some way,” shares co-owner and miller Catherine Pervan. “We came up with ‘Game of Scones’ because the baguettes looked like the knives and swords that made up the Iron Throne.”

After that first year, the community response was so great, the mother-daughter duo decided to continue entering the contest with puns and sci-fi-related sculptures each year.

This year’s creation was dubbed “Pan Solo”, and it is a follow-up to the bakery’s 2020 masterpiece known as “The Paindoughlorian,” which features a life-size Mandolorian and “Baby Dough-Da” made entirely out of bread. The “Pan Solo” creation is a 6-foot-tall depiction of the famous scene in The Empire Strikes Back, where Han Solo is frozen in carbonite.

“We’re science fiction nerds, so it just seemed right to stick with that,” Catherine says.

Fellow nerd Mark Hamill couldn't agree more as he tweeted the Bakery's doughy delight.

The family, however, is not opposed to other geek-related ideas. In 2021, they entered “Alligator Dough-ki” into Benicia’s scarecrow contest, inspired by one of the many variants from the Disney+ series Loki.

With all of the food-related shows out there, why haven’t we seen the Pervan family on TV yet?

“Two years ago, there was a sculpting show [being developed] for Disney, and we got all the way to the final casting, and they changed the direction of the show,” co-owner and head baker Hannalee Pervan says. “It changed from building something from dough to sculpting already made bread and other items, and that just wasn’t what we were good at.”

Hannalee studied Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management at Quinnipiac University in northern Connecticut. After completing the program, she went to Le Cordon Blue in Ottawa, Canada, and earned her pastry diploma. Hannalee tells Wealth of Geeks that having that business background is a crucial part of having a successful business.

panderia solo
Image Courtesy of Hanalee Pervan/One House Bakery

“We had to shift our business a lot during the pandemic. We started offering free delivery immediately; we started doing grocery items. We made big boxes of family meals to offer to the customers,” says Hannalee.

“We also started having online ordering and a phone ordering system, which we had not planned on having so soon. It was chaos at times,” Catherine adds.

The family of Canadian immigrants moved to Benicia, Ca. about five years ago. There was much consideration for the goals of their business as well as being close to the venues Hannalee’s husband would need to visit during his job as a sports reporter for CBS.

“We wanted to be part of the quintessential American small town, and we found just the right building [in Benicia],” says Catherine.

What can we expect from their baked creations next year? Catherine says, “I’ve already pitched her [Hannalee] a couple of ideas for next year, and she likes one of them, and I will say it’s from the Marvel universe, but that’s all I’m going to say about it.”

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This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.

Sarah is an expert travel writer and founder of On The Road With Sarah, a travel website with a focus on family experiences in the travel sector. She created her website as a resource for families looking to make the most of their vacations together. In addition to managing her own site, Sarah is a freelance writer for outlets such as Insider, Conde Nast Traveler, YahooLife, MSN, and Wealth of Geeks.