Who doesn’t love a good cake? No wedding or special occasion would be complete without one.
This month we ask the expert, self-taught home-baker, Beth Haxby, about choosing the perfect cake…
Q: When did you first start baking and why?
A: I started baking when I was 16, so a good 12 years ago now! The reason I started was purely down to my sweet tooth, I adore cakes and sweet things.
Once I’d mastered the basics, I started challenging myself to finding and adapting delicious cupcake and cake recipes for family and friends. I also ran a baking blog for 3 years during my time at University, and would post new recipes weekly.
Q: What gave you the idea to start your business?
A: Having ordered many celebration cakes in the past, I often found that either the cake looked visually amazing with lots of detail, but often the actual cake was a disappointment (usually rather dry!), or the cake tasted amazing but lacked in decoration.
I wanted to combine the two and create cakes that tasted delicious and fresh, but also had a unique and modern decoration. It wasn’t until I was made redundant from my job, that I thought now’s the time to give it a shot! Often people who tried my cakes would say “Why don’t you sell these?!” My family and friends were very supportive and encouraged me to give it a go.
Q: What do you love most about what you do?
A: I enjoy the whole process; I’m very passionate about baking with fresh and high quality ingredients, and love experimenting with new flavours. Then my creative and imaginative side comes out with the decorating!
Q: How would someone go about booking you for their wedding?
A: Most initial enquiries come to me via email. Then I can send them a quote along with a few design ideas, and we go from there.
Q: How far in advance do your customers need to order your cakes?
A: This really does depend on how busy I am! For celebration cakes I would say I need at least 2-3 weeks’ notice ideally. For wedding cakes I would need more like 4 weeks’ notice.
Q: How do your cakes get delivered or can people collect?
A: Celebration cakes are collect-only from my home in Poringland (Norwich). I deliver to venues across Norfolk and Suffolk on the morning for weddings.
Q: What flavours do you make?
A: I am always open to new requests, but my standard flavours are: Madagascan Victoria Sponge, Belgian Chocolate, Zesty Lemon & Mascarpone, Red Velvet, Coconut with Passionfruit and White Chocolate, White Chocolate and Fresh Raspberries, Banoffee, ‘London Fog’, Cookies and Cream, Carrot Cake, Triple Belgian Chocolate, Bakewell and Salted Caramel.
Q: What’s your favourite cake to eat?
A: My all-time favourite cake is Red Velvet; I just love the moistness of the cake and richness of the cream cheese frosting!
Q: What does the future hold for Beth Haxby Cakes?
A: At the moment I still work from my kitchen at home, so I would love to expand into a commercial kitchen. I sometimes day dream about opening a cake shop selling whole cakes, slices of cake, cupcakes and sweet treats – but we shall see!