Where did you learn to cook?
I learnt to cook informally from my grannies who were both fantastic bakers particularly my Nana Logue who was the cooking teacher at Muswellbrook high school where I grew up. Later I learned the classical technique of French cooking from two great teachers. Sandeep Chatterjee and John Close. My training was intensive for 4 years.
How did you come to love baking as you do?
I am sure my love for baking got under my skin when I was a kid. The house was always filled with the wonderful aroma of cakes, puddings and baking.
Who inspired you to start up a business in the food industry?
I am naturally very ambitious so when I saw a niche in the market for home style cakes and puddings to be supplied to restaurants and cafes, I started baking in my small kitchen at home and testing the market. It was an instant success.
What are your top tips for hosting a dinner party?
My top tips for hosting a dinner party are always keep it simple, seasonal and fresh. I do this funny little thing to take the stress out, where I always lay my table the night before. It’s amazing how much time and stress it takes out of the dinner party and you can then focus on the food, ambience and taking quiet time to soak in the tub with a glass of bubbles before your guests arrive.
Finish this sentence “My biggest mistake was…….
My biggest mistake was to become too myopic in the kitchen, focusing on the food rather than taking the umbrella approach over my business. This inevitably effects the bottom line. It taught me to “work on it not in it”.
Do you have a secret Sydney food location you could share? And your favourite dish is.
My secret food location is a little Vietnamese kitchen on George street Sydney called Pasteur. My favourite dish is the chicken Pho…. I go there when I feel overwhelmed from the stresses of the day and somehow that soup just seems to miraculously fix everything.
What’s the most popular cake at Simmone Logue?
My most popular cake at Simmone Logue is a close toss up between the vanilla cupcakes and the flour-less chocolate cake. I have a vanilla cupcake most days with a strong coffee around 4 pm. It’s the caffeine and sugar hit I need to get me pushing into the afternoon. I often serve the flour- less chocolate cake if I’m entertaining at home. It’s so easy to throw a handful of berries over the cake and serve with double cream and the dessert is done.
Any advice for anyone who wants to start up a food business.
My best advice to anyone wanting to start a food business is you must be passionate, know your numbers/business model and be prepared to dedicate your life to it.
Favourite websites you follow
My favourite cocktail is a margarita and the wine I am most enjoying now is the Helm half dry Riesling from Canberra.
My guilty pleasure is the 50c soft serve ice cream from the McDonald’s drive through