The Lone Baker is me... I am Jeniffer Paxton. Living in the leafy eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Australia with my family and beloved pugs Maggie May and Gallifrey. Join me on Facebook or browse my Flickr gallery.
Boring health info in a few sentences: Over a decade now of chronic illness, following many surgeries, spinal Osteoarthritis ...which leaves me unable to drive, sit for any length of time (slightly annoying that!!), add the Fibromyalgia and lung disease you get the picture.
Baking, cooking, cake decorating as cliché as it sounds are my "happy place". The plus side to pain management is finding something you love, for me it's food science, baking history/origins of recipes, chocolate, sugarwork and fondant.
My Food history: Grew up in a working class Greek/Italian area in Melbourne Australia, I'm of English heritage so you were getting that mixed European/Australian foods from the start. Loved spending time in the kitchen and waitressing at my Aunty Clare's country pub. Attended a 'technical school' (an alternative to a high school) where I learnt all the basics, preserving, pastry, yeasted baking, custards/meringue, royal icing/fondant, cakes, biscuits (cookies), choux, full meals/service, home economics.
Away from home I lived neighbouring Little Saigon in inner Melbourne for over a decade, worked in a fresh seafood shop for a few years where we also made/sold seafood "heat at home products", pies, crepes etc. Catered seafood for parties on the weekends. Learnt about charcuterie from a long time boyfriend and ate out at night huhhh hummm, "most nights" (we were working long hours!!) so got to taste, try and enjoy many cuisines.
Of course there was the time I worked in a Greek city cafe with rubber gloves up to my armpits taking the flesh off hot boiled chickens (I try to block that out), without even going into the Germans, the vegan years, 40 hours shifts stirring giant coppers filled with boiling Christmas puddings, up ladders spinning toffee on giant Croquembouche and the tears of supplying chocolate dipped stuffed lychees to the local Chinese restaurant... there is a lot more, but that I'll save for along the way.
Blog: here has been many highlights running this blog, including being featured on 'Cupcakes Take the Cake' many times, being published along with other talented bloggers in the cookbook Little Treats (International Bakers), the "Cake Hack" in October 2015's Cake Masters magazine to name a few.
Oct 2015 ... excited to be in my favourite cake decorating magazine :)
Not forgetting the lovely bakers, chef's and cake decorators I have met and formed friendships with along the way ...that is the true highlight.
Hope you will find something on my blog that makes you smile, informs, sparks your imagination and if it's a cupcake, gooey chocolate with a touch of molecular gastronomy all the better.
Currently involved in something special... baking along side the fabulous alpha bakers. A group of twenty plus bakers that are baking from the world renowned and awarded Rose Levy Beranbaum books 'The Baking Bible' and 'The Bread Bible'.
My travelling step son soon off for some working/living time in the UK.
Wouldn't be doing this all without the support of my step son Daniel.... always an inspiration.
Daniel’s true passion is for film making, a past film student at RMIT Daniels talents include writing, producing and directing as illustrated here in the trailer for his anti Twilight tale 'Flower of a Vampire'.
Daniel’s earlier VCE (High School Final) Film 'PremoNotion'
Special thanks to: Emma, David & Sarah Darlison, Deborah Zahra, Jodie, Peter Dyson and Stuart (I'd be lost without your support), Deb Giles & Christine Cook for your encouragement, ideas & feedback. To Cindy Darlison a lifelong friend and super smart working mother of three who is always there for me despite her busy schedule... thank you.
Photography & Food Styling: Jeniffer Paxton with appearances by Daniel Paxton-Zahra