A passion for perfect patisseries and cutting-edge cakes, meet Rita Schuster.
Cake lovers - if you're looking for a very special cake for that very special occasion, then look no further than Schuster Cakes, a home industry business run by Pretoria-based Rita Schuster.
A recent graduate from Capsicum Culinary Studio's Pretoria campus, the 59-year old Schuster said being a pastry chef was a lifelong dream and she was delighted that she was able to complete her Patisserie course and now gets to indulge in her passion, which is creating amazing cakes.
"I discovered that you are never too old to learn," says Schuster. "I joined Capsicum as an older student but I never once felt out of place.
"I made lots of friends, met many wonderful people and learned a lot from them all, including two wonderful lecturers", Chef Hennie van Niewenhuisen and Chef Mark Coombe.
One look at some of the cakes Schuster has made, and it's easy to see the passion she has for her confectionery creations. But what does she do to stay on trend?
"I research constantly. One can never know enough because this industry is constantly moving. I also watch baking programmes on television and YouTube," she says.
We tore Schuster away from her mixing bowls and whisks long enough to ask her a few quick questions:
What are some of the more interesting industry trends?
Different icing techniques, modelling of fondant, ganache drippings and cake decorating
What would be your advice to students who are currently studying towards becoming a chef?
Dedication to finishing the course, being humble and believe in one's self. The chefs lecturers are always right so listen and do.
Is there a secret to a successful cake?
It must be as tasty as it is beautiful.
Is there one cake you feel you still need to master?
I would like to be able to make really amazing ice cream cakes.
Are there any celebrity chefs you admire?
I enjoy the Australian Katherine Sabbath, a teacher turned baker who is known as the Sydney Cake Queen and has the most wonderful cutting-edge cake designs
What is your favourite cake to eat?
A baked cheesecake with berries on top.
Where would you like to see yourself in five years time?
I would like to have my own unique coffee and curio shop in Dinokeng Game Reserve on our farm. I am also busy putting together my own recipe book.
How can people order a cake from you?
Call or WhatsApp Jolene on 083 443 1886 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow her on Social Media.
Facebook: @Schuster Cakes