Queen of cakes
Liza Traut seems like an ordinary mom and housewife, but in between those school runs and once her family are fast asleep she uses her super power to transform ordinary ingredients into incredibly impressive works of art that taste even better than they look. Our Kitchen.net researchers had the opportunity to meet with her and ask her about how it all started.
Her home is inviting and beautifully decorated whilst being practical in terms of family life. When shes not creating her masterpieces all her tools are tucked away in cupboards and you could hardly tell from looking at her kitchen that its the place where these cakes are created. Unlike the cakes you see on the reality tv shows, hers are created in a normal domestic kitchen no specialised ovens or industrial mixers. Having seen a few of the cakes myself I have to say the details that go into these cakes are far better than anything Ive seen on or off of tv.
So what inspired you to start baking and doing cake dcor?
Well I started 3years ago on my sons 3rd birthday, I wanted to give him a great cake but we couldnt afford to buy one at the time, so I decided to make him a cake. I first started looking on the internet on how to make the marshmallow fondant. When I eventually produced the finished product at my sons birthday the moms were so impressed that they started ordering from me. It wasnt something I planned to do, it kind of just happened. The business grew via word of mouth.
Tell me about yourself and your life before cakes?
I was born on 19 November 1978 in Cape Town. I went toTafelberg School. From there I studied to be an Interior Designer, it was a 3 year course and I received a diploma at the end. After studying I went to work for an architecture company as an Interior Designer and for 7 years worked on hotel and palace designs, some of which were overseas clients. (Its easy to see where Lizas creativity, design and precision engineering come from).
In between working I got married to my lovely husband Wagner and we have 2 boys. They are 8 and 5 years old and two of my biggest fans. They fully support me and my kids love my job because they get to eat all the left overs from baking the cakes and they go to all the birthdays.
How big has your business grown now?
I was making 4 cakes per week but have since cut back to producing two cakes per week. Sadly I have to turn down quite a few on a regular basis due to the time that goes into each cake. I’ve started offering a day course in Sugar Craft Cakes; at the moment I am teaching beginner to intermediate classes but hope to do more courses in the future.
Besides spending time with my family, nothing else really, as any mum will tell you kids are virtually a full time job on their own. When Im not with my family I bake. I love baking and love doing it all the time.
What has been your worst cake ever made?
I made a man which was almost half a metre high but on the way to the venue it started melting, it was terrible. The head ended up falling off. Ill make the cake again but only with air-conditioning for delivery!! I have since made over 1 meter high cakes with success.
The best cake ever that I enjoyed making was a clown cake and a Kung Fu Panda cake. But my ultimate cake was for a client named Emma Rose. It was a pink cake with tiny details on, it just came out so beautiful.
Liza is one of those people that is blessed enough to have a career they love although Im not sure if I could spend all that time putting all that effort into a cake only to have it sliced and devoured in moments. Liza on the other hand is very circumspect about this part of her business; as long as the client is happy then it was a good day at the office!