When I am not crunching numbers during the day or decorating with sugar, I enjoy spending time with my husband (aka confection quality control) and our fur kids.
My enjoyment for confections began at an early age. For my first birthday I was given a smash cake. I quickly developed a love for vanilla cake. My mother told me as a toddler I would take a bag of cookies and a tub of butter and frost each cookie then place them in rows. Maybe this was the first sign of my desire to decorate confections. I certainly loved to eat them. I remember running to the bakery display to pick the cupcake with the most frosting. Slowly eating it, walking along aside my mother while she grocery shopped. While at the laundromat, waiting for the clothes to finish, enjoying a soft chocolate chip cookie from the restaurant next door.
At some point I began to actually bake in addition to consuming baked goods. I just loved slicing the roll of premade cookie dough, of course eating loads of raw dough. Who knew raw cookie dough was equally as tasty? Then my world opened up when I discovered box cake mix and a chocolate chip cookie recipe. The ability to make sweet treats myself for any reason was rather exciting. It was pure joy when I discovered sugar cookies decorated with frosting.
Making cookies, fudge and bread for family, friends and business contacts during the holidays began with a few hours on a Sunday then grew to the entire weekend of mixing, baking and plating. It was a labor of love. Even though it could be overly time consuming and stressful when the sleep deprivation kicks in; the feeling of accomplishment for having created these yummy goodies was worth it.
Then word spread about a Cottage Food Operation bill being worked on, which would allow certain foods to be prepared from home kitchens. The law has several limitations: finished products must not require refrigeration (no cream cheese frosting or cheesecake), direct sales only (no shipping) and sales caps (annual sales may not exceed $50,000). While these limitations do impact me, maybe after a few years these limits will be removed (fingers crossed). A glimmer of hope shone onto my dream. For the next couple of years I experimented with recipes to find the absolute best. Fifteen different white vanilla cake recipes, several chocolate chip recipes, even trying "to be one" with my oven because no one likes burned cookies. I setup the nook off my kitchen to be my baking suite and have been checking off the "To Do's" of opening a business.
Bakery and Desserts in La Quinta/Palm Desert California.
Baking Cookies, Cupcakes and Cake Pops for the Coachella Valley communities of Palm Springs, Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Bermuda Dunes and Indio
I have also spent a considerable amount of time deciding what I am going to sale. As much as I love decorating cakes, I just do not have the time needed to properly execute a cake while continuing to work full time. With cookies, cupcakes and cake pops, they are made in stages and decorations can be made in advance. This allows me to spread the baking and decorating over multiple evenings after work. Cakes need to be done all at once, for a cake due on Saturday, I would need a day and half prior to assemble and decorate (at least, depending on design). While I love the look of a tiered cake or a beautifully designed cake, my ooh's and aah's are with favors and dessert tables of cookies, cupcakes and cake pops.
AN ARTISAN BAKERY OFFERING CLASSIC, HOME-STYLE CONFECTIONS
the girl behind the apron
I began making treats for birthdays and holidays. Looking at pictures, reading tutorials and experimenting with techniques quickly became my go to free time activity. I received compliments on my cookies, cupcakes and cake pops, for they were both appealing to the eyes and taste. I thought maybe this is something I should pursue. Not only can I do something I genuinely enjoy, but I can also make money doing it. After some research I discovered a food business could not be operated from a home kitchen, it must be operated from a commercial kitchen location. Unless I could produce the capital to lease a space for a commercial kitchen, I was going to have to keep my day job and continue my baking as a hobby. I was happy to make family and friends birthday cakes. I entered (and won) cakes into the county fair. I was offered the opportunity to submit a cake for a theme section of a cake magazine. Being notified my submission was selected was a great feeling.