My name is Annie Dries and I have been baking since I was a little girl. I started by helping my mother in the kitchen and my love for baking grew from there. Here I am with my mother’s KitchenAid mixer which I used to call the ‘kitchen maid’.
I continued practicing and developed more skills over the years. The first cake I made completely on my own was for my mother’s birthday in September of 1989 when I was almost 12 years old. This was shortly after Hurricane Hugo. I failed to level the cake layers and the cake layers on top began to slide off. The cake was a visual disaster so I named it the Hurricane Hugo cake. I think I remember it tasting good though! We are trying to hunt down the picture but haven’t found it yet!
Despite the difficulties I faced, I was not discouraged and only sought to learn from mistakes and get better. I made an anniversary cake for my parent’s 25th anniversary when I was 17. It was ambitious and not perfect but it didn’t fall apart and it tasted great. This one was a surprise for my parents’ party. I remember pretty much covering my neighbor’s kitchen in batter splatters and almost burning out her hand mixer as I couldn’t sneak out the good old ‘kitchen maid’ from my house!
After this, I was off to college where there was no kitchen or opportunity to further build my talents in this area. I graduated college and married the love of my life. I had trouble finding work at first and focused energy on learning how to cook and always enjoyed making cakes for my husband and the new friends we met when he was stationed in Hawaii.
Friends always complimented my baking and many said that I should go into business. All I could think of were the hours that would be involved. I did not want to have to be up before dawn and work on weekends, so I never really entertained the idea of it. I did do a couple of paid cakes over the years for friends of friends. One was a tropical fish groom’s cake for a wedding. This was one of my first creations using fondant.
Over the years, I made many a birthday cake for my best girlfriends.
I always enjoyed making people happy with my cakes, but I never realized how great this could feel until I had my first child and began to make a special cake for him every year. This is what really pushed me to learn more and to do things that I didn’t think I could.
Aiden’s First Birthday
I became even more ambitious the next year…
Aiden’s 2nd Birthday
And the next…
Aiden’s 3rd Birthday
During this time, I had my second little boy and, of course, he had to have really cool cakes too. His birthday is right around Halloween, so I made his cake to match his costume for his first birthday.
Zach’s 1st Birthday
I continued to be complimented on my cakes by friends and family and continued to really enjoy what I was doing but felt that I simply wouldn’t have to time to make cakes with two children.
Then, something happened and I began to receive encouragement from those outside my circle of friends. My husband had always told me I should sell my cakes. He fully supported the idea of me starting my business which would involve some serious ‘daddy daycare’ on the weekends. The other significant factor that propelled me forward was a close friend of mine with a gluten intolerance who is also vegan. It was practically impossible for her to find gluten free vegan cakes and when she did find them, they were a disappointment that only reminded her of what she was missing. It was then that I went to work crafting the perfect gluten free vegan chocolate cake. She was so happy and I wanted to share that with others in a similar situation, especially children.
I thought even more about starting a business and looked into what I would need to do to be selling cakes out of my home legitimately and here I am baking cakes out of my residential kitchen that is approved by the Massachusetts Board of Health!
I can’t wait to make something special for you. No matter how simple, intricate, or challenging, I can design and create it! I look forward to making your day even more memorable!