Bailey’s bakery manager set to compete at The Americas Cake Fair Competition this month
For Monika Liller, bakery manager at Bailey’s General Store, baking has always been an integral part of her life.
“I’ve baked on and off. My grandmother baked really good cakes, she lived in Poland. I remember sitting on the window sill and watching her bake when I was 5-years-old,” Liller said.
Initially, Liller started her career in baking by making bread.
“Bread is such a comfort food, just the smell of baked bread in the house makes it smell so good,” Liller said.
After she mastered the art of making bread, Liller moved on to cakes. Four years ago, she began working at Bailey’s General Store. Liller said she found out about the competition after purchasing a bucket of fondue.
“I ordered a bucket of fondue with a sticker on it that said ‘Cake Fest 2017.’ I said to myself ‘Why not?’ I went online to see what it was and I thought that entering us into the contest would just add something special to our cake story at Bailey’s,” Liller. “Another thing is too, you learn a lot when you go to contests. You see other people have different techniques, different ideas. I love to learn,” Liller said.
The competition is set to take place at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando Oct. 13-15. The event is expected to draw over 10,000 participants from all over and even a few celebrity chef judges – one of those happens to be Buddy Valastro from TLC’s “Cake Boss.”
Liller said she has been prepping for the competition by making as many cakes as possible.
“Every cake I get where a customer allows me to try different things – I do it. I see the cake before it’s done so I’m able to picture it. It’s fun to see the end of it and how it comes out and it’s always neat to see how excited people get when they see the cake because they really don’t know what they’re going to get. I’ve been practicing with a lot of fondue and colors,” Liller said. “I try to make all my cakes different. I try not to send out any cakes that repeat themselves.”
For the competition, Liller’s “Under the Florida Sun” themed three-tiered cake will be a nod to Sanibel.
“The bottom piece is a sea turtle, the middle layer is a coconut cake that’s a signature to Bailey’s. We’ll also have a picture of the Sanibel sunset and sea shells. The top layer will have a bucket of oranges because it’s Florida, and the Sanibel Lighthouse and the two little cottages,” Liller said.
Liller said she is looking forward to competing.
“I’m excited to go there and represent us and have that mart that we tried it,” Liller said. “You don’t learn if you don’t play.”
Those interested in having a personal cake done by Liller can call Bailey’s at 239-472-1516 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.