Salon Culinaire International
You can imagine my surprise when at Cake International, one of the judges asked me to consider entering Salon Culinaire International. Salon is the world's biggest and most prestigious professional chef competition, all those big name tv chefs have all competed here during their career, hoping to show early on that they have that edge over the rest. I told her I would think about it and I may or may not be there.
Well, of course when I got back home to the IOM, my other half told me I'd be ridiculous not to go and give it a shot! So here I was, in a completely unknown environment, with yet another of my most bold designs. Looking along the tables I had those same nagging doubts wanting to turn around and run away as I had at Cake International, but I placed my cake in it's spot and then scarpered!
There I am having popped it in it's place and a quick selfie before running as quickly as my chunky little legs would take me!
The results were out at the every end of the first day but I wasn't there and couldn't find out how I had placed, instead I had to wait until the next morning when the show opened at 10am. A friend of mine was there doing a Facebook live scanning along the rows of cakes, when she got to mine I was holding me breath and when I heard her say 'Aimee you got a gold!!' I thought I might pass out! I couldn't believe it! Another gold.
I was sky high all day. I returned later to collect my cake and watch the awards ceremony, only to find out not only had I achieved a gold, but as the highest scoring gold in the wedding cake category I had only gone and got Best in Class! Here I am with the director receiving my awards...
It it hard to describe the enormity of achieving a Best in Class at a competition such as Salon Culinaire. This is the stuff of dreams. Some people enter consistently for their entire career and never get that elusive Best in Class, but there I was, my first time entering, only my second ever competition, and I had gone and done it. I'm not too proud to say I definitely cried a little!
It would be easy for people to accuse me of boasting I know, and that isn't why I am writing this at all. I am super proud of myself, and I don't think there is anything wrong with that. Noone from the IOM has been to any of these competitions before and I am trying to fly the flag for our little island. I want to show people that you can take a risk, and sometimes you can win, sometimes you may not, but either way you will definitely have learnt things about yourself along the way.
And some people will also turn around and say, it's 'only' cake. Well, yes it is 'only' cake, but at the same time, if everyone was able to produce cakes like these then there wouldn't be any demand for my work, and I would channel my creativity in a different way. However these cakes are my passion, they are my way of expressing myself, they are my artwork. And I think that is pretty damn cool.