My love of baking started as a child. I would be famished after a long walk home from school. Instinctively, I would open my parents' kitchen cupboards and begin to forage. The contents were what I would imagine to be the standard in many households. Some long-forgotten tins of canned meat or fruit. Pasta, in a variety of forms. And an array of basic baking ingredients. With eggs and milk in the fridge I knew I would have to try whip up something delicious in a matter of minutes. For me, this was certainly better than the left-over sandwich I had conveniently forgotten in my schoolbag that day.
I would make something as often as I could. Be it unfrosted vanilla cupcakes, or a few waffles drenched in golden syrup, my insatiable obsession with baked goods began. Pancakes and crumpets were a staple. On the rare occasion I would attempt my hand at biscuits. When it was time for us to be spoiled, my mom would treat me to a box of "mix-and-bake" brownies or chocolate mousse.
Throughout my studies, and my years in the office, my friends and colleagues have been introduced and have become familiar with my love of baking. Although I have stayed true to the simplistic nature of my childhood favourites, I have moved away from my "mix-and-bake" pastime. I now enjoy creating all things good from raw ingredients. I believe they are no less difficult to master, but are all the more delicious. Not to mention how much more satisfying it is indulging in something you created... from scratch.
A couple of friends encouraged me to enter The Great South African Bake Off when they saw a call for contestants. And so I did. Before I knew it, I was caught up in a blender with production staff, camera crews, a tent in the middle of nowhere, and a number of other contestants. I only managed to make it to episode 4 (out of 8). However, my short-lived time on the show left me with a group of really good friends, and an enriched determination to share my passion for all things sweet.
I have always wanted to create a recipe book. A bite-sized piece of cake from my life. Frosted with a smear of my indulgences. And sprinkled with sparkles of my personality. And so my journey begins. Week by week, join me on my attempt in making my dream a reality.
Welcome to the birth of Sweet Cheeks.