Driving to Sophie’s family home in late January, I wondered how someone so young - Sophie’s in year 12 at Saint Kentigern College, could create such divine cakes. It didn’t take me long to discover why. Granny Sue, Sophie’s cooking inspiration, taught her to bake cakes and bread as a toddler, sitting her on the kitchen bench with the mixing bowl propped between her legs.
A freshly baked chocolate cake lovingly sandwiched together with chocolate ganache sat waiting on the kitchen work surface when I arrived, ready for Sophie to work her decorating magic. As we chatted about Granny Sue and her cooking idol, Anna Olson of Food Network Canada’s Bake with Anna Olson, Sophie serenely decorated the cake. Watching the cake evolve layer by layer, I was in awe of her talent and especially loved that Sophie grows the flowers that she delicately adds to the top as a finishing touch. And sweet is definitely where Sophie’s heart lies, from cakes and cupcakes to tarts and complex French patisserie so I can understand why Anna Olson’s baking techniques are a perfect match for the direction Sophie is taking.
Sophie’s talent didn’t go unnoticed when she worked alongside Habby, the pastry chef at Soul Bar for two days last year. Her biggest achievement to date and pretty impressive for a then 15 year old, it was an amazing opportunity for Sophie to spend time in the kitchen of a top restaurant, improving her pastry skills and techniques, understanding how a busy environment operates and being given specific tasks to deliver for the desserts. And no doubt getting to meet Gareth Stewart from MKR and Head Chef at Soul Bar was a bonus too.
With a dream to one day own her own business (it already has a name too), Sophie has a very clear plan for her journey once she finishes school, having spent many hours researching the best places to develop her culinary talent as a pastry chef, including Johnson and Wales University in US. Now that’s pretty impressive for someone so young.
If you're looking for a stunning and unique cake for your next celebration, get in touch with Sophie either via instagram @sophieskitchen1 or firstname.lastname@example.org and don’t forget to mention The Foodie Inc.
Now... I just need to find a good excuse to use Sophie’s Kitchen again myself!
ps Don’t ask for the chocolate cake recipe. It’s a secret, developed over time and it’s kept in her head!