Today I would love to introduce you to one of my all time favorite talents, Melanie! Melanie owns Delectable Baked Goods based in Beaverton and has created some of the most breathtaking, and not to mention delicious, cakes I've ever seen. She is crazy good at what she does and always manages to blow me away. I first worked with Melanie in September of last year and have been trying to work with her even more ever since. However, I don't always get the chance because she is a busy busy lady. Not only is she an incredible girl boss, she's a wife, and mom of an adorable little boy. You can see her beautiful work on instagram @_delectable and on her website at www.delectablebakedgoods.com. I hope you love her as much as I do:
- What piqued your interest in baking and design?
I grew up in a family that ALWAYS baked during the holidays. My grandmother made cookies and truffles, and my mom made (and still makes) the most delicious homemade bread. When I traveled across the US (from Idaho to Arizona) to finish an art degree, my friends and I were severely lacking home baked goods. So I started making cookies for everyone I knew. I very quickly became known for my cookies...and had to limit my production to only the holidays so I could finish school and start a career! After 10 years, and lots of nagging, they finally convinced me to start a business. I ran a business for just over two years in California when we lived there, took a break to have my son, relocated to Beaverton, and now I've been in business here for just over a year.
- Do you have a favorite or specialty recipe?
I'm not sure if I can pick a favorite...I've been perfecting them all for over 15 years...so its hard to pick just one. I do really love a good classic chocolate cake with strawberry buttercream though. Oh and lemon curd...I love a good lemon bar!
- Do you prefer cakes or smaller treats?
Cakes hands down. But I do tend to gravitate towards the smaller personal cakes. Those giant 5 tier ones make me nervous!
- Do you bake & design yourself?
As of right now, I am a one woman show. I do all the designing, prepping, baking, dishwashing and paperwork. I do take a lot of inspiration from the fabulous bakers in this world, but I try never to copy a design exactly.
- Who inspires you the most in the kitchen?
My mom and grandmother have always inspired me (in and out of the kitchen) but I as far as cake designs I pull a lot of inspiration from Australian bakers (such as Cakes by Cliff and Unbirthday Bakery) and England's Fondant Fox.
- When you have a large order to deliver, do you have any pre-wedding rituals?
I do not. I am generally not a superstitious person, I just have to trust that everything is stacked right and it will make the journey!
- What keeps you sane during the busy seasons?
Um...wine? I do love to run and do yoga. Both help me deal with stress in a good way, but they do fall by the wayside when I get super busy.
- Why Community over Competition?
Community over Competition is SO important to me. I worked in non-profits for many years, and know that you can do a lot more good when you work together than when you fight amongst yourselves. In our baking community (which is HUGE here in Portland), we may all have similar passions, but we all have unique talents. For example: I excel at buttercream, but am not skilled in detailed fondant work. So when I get a request for all fondant work, or fondant work I don't think I can successfully do, I refer them to the bakers I do know who can execute the vision of the client. Without reaching out to my fellow bakers and working together, I would never be able to do that.
- What is your dream or vision for Delectable Baked Goods?
So many! My main focus right now is to find a retail space or sublet a micro space to open a retail shop in Beaverton. We Westsiders like great food and cake too!
- What is the most important piece of advice you have for brides?
Enjoy the moment. No matter what happens...if it rains... or the schedule is running late... or if your cake falls over...just enjoy the moment. Everything will come together and at the end of the day you will be married to your best friend. (And you may have a few good stories to tell your children and grandchildren one day!)