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How it all started..

By Ayon

So… I’ve gotten lots of “I didn’t know you could bake…” mostly from professional colleagues when they learn about my Ayon’s Bakery endeavor.  My running and cycling buddies know I am a food lover – and more than anything… a baked sweets lover.  I fell in love with baked goodies growing up in Brazil. 

My friends would be out playing while I would rather spend the time in the kitchen with their moms baking a cake or making some other Brazilian Northeast goodie:   Pudim – flan typically topped with caramelized prunes, canjica or manguzá – corn, cinnamon and coconut milk desert, pé de moleque cake – coffee, chocolate, spice and cashew nut cake, bolo de rolo – rolled cake with guava paste, etc.

You see…  during most of my childhood, the Wen household didn’t have an oven since Chinese don’t typically bake.  So my first attempt to make a cake was on the stove top with a frying pan when I was 10 – as you can imagine, it was an absolute flop.  A year later, I went to my friend Emilia’s house for a visit and tasted the most delightful chocolate cake: Super moist, perfect texture and thickness, with full bodied chocolate flavor.   I would not leave her house without the recipe and guarded it while pedaling my bike back home.  I was determined to make the cake and have my parents try it so they would purchase an oven.

I followed the recipe’s directions except for the actual baking part:  Without an oven, I resorted to the family’s rice cooker and prepped the Brigadeiro frosting on the stove top according to the recipe.  It was super delish!!!  My family loved it, my parents purchased a regular stove with a regular oven, and I haven’t stopped baking since.

And yes…  the Brigadeiro Chocolate Cake on my menu today is an evolved version of my very first cake ;)

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