an interview with Hannah, our pastry chef and the artist behind our signature sweets & pastries
Q. What inspired you to become a pastry chef?
A. I have always loved to bake, but working at Williams-Sonoma corporate definitely helped. I became a lot more exposed to quality foods and finding great bakeries is one of my favorite hobbies. I think once I realized there were people out there as passionate as I was about pastries who dedicated themselves to it I was ready to sign up!
Q. Can you remember that “aha!” moment when you realized that being a chef was what you were meant to do?
A. I met Martha Stewart when she came to San Francisco a couple years ago and she signed a copy of her Baking Handbook for me. I let it sit on my coffee table for weeks and I used to flip through it when I got home from work every single night. Once I finally allowed myself to make something out of it I was hooked. I had a new appreciation for baking and loved it even more once I worked my way through the whole book. I have never looked back!
Q. What’s your very favorite thing to bake?
A. Carrot cake- it fills the kitchen with an amazing aroma and I love to eat it too!
Q. What is your personal favorite of all your pastries and sweets?
A. The brownies. The chocolate I use for them is extra special and very addictive.
Q. What is your favorite ingredient?
A. Almond paste. It adds an extra dimension and it is all round amazing!
Q. What’s the most exciting thing about working at TASTE?
A. The challenging orders that come through the door whether it be a large quantity or something extremely intricate. I like not having a clue how I am going to accomplish something and pulling it off well.
Q. What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
A. When people stop me in the cafe and compliment my pastries. Nothing makes me feel more special than being told they like what I have created.
Q. What is your favorite memory from the back kitchen at TASTE?
A. Having all the amazing chefs in town here for the Grilled Cheese Grill off. I loved listening to the kitchen banter, watching the talent, and trying to keep out of the way.
Q. Do you have any fun stories about baking flops?
A. Lots of them! Imagine just about anything you can mix up or do wrong baking and I’m sure I have done it at least once. It comes with the territory.
Q. What’s your overall aspiration for TASTE?
A. To become a Spokane staple. I want people to know us for good quality and great food and keep coming back because they like what we are doing and supporting a local business. It doesn’t get any better than that.