A favourite among the fashion crowd, Steph has been producing our signature Mayfair biscuits for the last two London Fashion Week presentations. Go behind the scenes, as part of our #AspinalAppreciates learning new skills series, with another one of our talents behind the magic to learn how to recreate your own delicious Mayfair biscuits at home.
Learn how to create beautifully intricate, hand-iced biscuits just like a pro. In this tutorial, you will learn how to hand cut and hand ice biscuits to resemble the Mayfair handbag used in our London Fashion Week presentation with tips and tricks from Baked by Steph along the way.
What you will need:
Biscuit Base Ingredients (Bakes approx. 25 biscuits)
300g plain flour
125g self raising flour
125g granulated sugar
125g golden syrup
1 large egg
Royal Icing Ingredients
500g icing sugar
2 large egg whites
Stand mixer or electric hand mixer
Gel food colouring
Cookie scribe or cocktail stick
A4 piece of card (we will print or draw the handbag template onto this)
London-based Stephs journey began as a passion project in early 2018 - with a degree in fashion and years spent working in both the fashion industry and the digital sector, Steph has spent her years developing a keen eye for detail and design. In 2018 she spent her time working at a web design agency by day then honing her baking skills by night (and developing a pretty serious coffee addiction in the process!).
What began as cakes for friends soon became treats for friends of friends, until finally what had started as a hobby had snowballed into a full-time job. At the end of 2018 Steph bit, the bullet and officially traded in websites and marketing for kitchen scales and cookie dough.
Now with a kitchen based in East London and a growing team of superstar Baking Creatives, Baked by Steph ship cookies across the UK and cater to a growing base of London clients with stand-out cakes and treats.
Every single product is handmade with love and therefore totally unique.
What made you pursue a career in baking?
Well, I've always known my way around a kitchen but I never really considered a career in baking until a few years back. I'm a completely self-taught baker - I just started baking as a hobby but it quickly became my absolute obsession. I've always been a creative person and this was a new way for me to explore and manifest my creativity. I would spend all of my spare time reading and trying out all the recipes and baking techniques I could get my hands on and all the while I was sharing my journey on Instagram and gaining a following. Soon I started getting requests and I began taking on a few orders a week. It started with cakes and cookies for friends and family but I soon found myself baking for friends of friends and then complete strangers. Before I knew it I had big companies reaching out and I was taking on more orders than I could manage. It got to a point where I was getting home from my day job and working in the kitchen until 2am, 3am, even 4am just to keep up and, of course, that isn't sustainable. It took a little while to pluck up the courage but I finally decided to bite the bullet, quit my day job and focus my energy into making my side hustle my main hustle.
Which part of your job do you enjoy the most?
The design process is by far the best part for me as I really get to engage my creative side with it. Every cookie and cake you see starts off in my head as an idea and then there's a whole process involved in getting it out of my head and turning it into a real product. I usually dedicate a night every week once the team has gone home for the day to get creative in the kitchen and try out any new ideas. There's a lot of trial and error involved but there's just no better feeling than when I get excited about a design and it works out. Plus we get to eat all of the errors and samples we make so that definitely adds to the enjoyment!
What is your favourite thing to bake?
That's a tough one! I love to bake anything and everything but macarons are definitely the most challenging thing we bake in the kitchen so that also makes them the most rewarding when they work out. They also tend to get a lot of "ooohs" and "aaaahs" which makes them all the more rewarding.
What is your personal design style?
It's funny because the Baked by Steph aesthetic is very much a bright and colourful affair with lots of embellishments whereas I would describe my personal design style as quite minimalist and tonal. I think the brand is a way for me to manifest the more colourful side of my brain that I may not be so confident to explore personally and I take great enjoyment in that.
Where do you seek inspiration?
Quite honestly, everywhere. Of course, I keep up-to-date with the wider baking community and like to see which styles and bakes are trending but, in terms of design, it can be anything from the latest runway shows to a cushion or a plant that I've just happened to walk by. I'm always on the lookout for things that stand out to me and I'm always considering how something I like could be translated into a baked good. It's a very niche area!