Let Them Eat Cake

I didn’t begin my baking journey with the idea that I would someday make a career out of it. In fact, I’m not a pastry chef; I’ve never been to pastry or culinary school. I simply started with a love for baking, often reminiscing about the times my mother and I would spend in the kitchen baking pound cakes together when I was a young teen. I can probably count those occasions on one hand, but since Momma passed away quite some time ago, I’ve learned to cherish each and every one of those few moments we had together.

Far before my cake career began, my love for baking often drove me to attempt to recreate the exotic cakes I saw on the cover of magazines such as Woman’s Day or Good Housekeeping. I didn’t have any experience baking anything other than those amazing homemade pound cakes in Mommy’s kitchen. Nor had I ever seen anything like those elaborate, magazine cover cakes ever in my life that made me feel like a kid on Christmas Eve.

I can remember being so excited while purchasing all of the ingredients for those edible masterpieces, many of which I had never heard of before such as almond paste. Being able to recreate the model cake, with a great deal of success, made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside like I had really accomplished a great feat like climbing Mount Everest or something. I used those cakes as gifts, usually for my father’s birthday or for my kids’ school events. The feedback I received from them was overwhelmingly positive. I felt empowered. My self-confidence blasted through the roof and I was so elated that I had found something so impactful that I absolutely loved to do. It wasn’t until many, many years later that I would decide to make a career goal of it. I followed my heart while not even knowing what to do at first. I didn’t really ever think about that. I just simply got started.

When the cake show, Cake Boss, made its television debut around 2009, I was immediately drawn to the new techniques utilizing fondant and modeling chocolate. Buddy became my “mentor” right in my living room, and I would often try out what I had learned from the show. A few months later, I decided to make a go of opening a home-based custom bakery. I figured I could have a job doing something I was good at and simply loved to do.

I have now been in the caking industry for almost 12 years and have expanded my capacity to include a plethora of cake flavors as well as a variety of treats to adorn any sweets table. Needless to say, the love and passion I first experienced in the kitchen, years ago, with Mommy has intensified over the years. It blesses my heart to create one-of-a-kind, edible masterpieces for people’s celebrations—no matter how grand or small. It may be a very small impact in a world that is so full of uncertainty and despair, but it’s a contribution that brings a little joy and happiness, and I’m totally okay with that. It’s my little influence on the world.