Thursday, June 1, 2017
Your Cake Baker, Santa Barbara’s well-loved specialty cake haven founded by Wayne Kjar in 2010, is getting a French spin with new owners Karen and Matthieu Hervouet, adding their European flair to the mix.
The Santa Barbara Independent’s four-time winner of Best Wedding Cake in Santa Barbara will still be serving its famous cupcakes, cakes, and other treats, but they now offer French pastries and are operating under the name Chooket by Your Cake Baker.
The chooket (“chouquette” in French) is the Hervouets’ signature item. Similar to a cream puff, this dreamy little drop of goodness is made of fresh puffed pastry used with real butter, filled with whipped cream, and topped with sparkling pearl sugar. One bite of this light, rich, but not-too-sweet gem pays testament to Chooket’s slogan: “The Kingdom of Cream Puffs.” These airy yet creamy treats taste as though they were created for royalty.
“When you eat one, you don’t stop,” laughed Matthieu, as he noticed the look of pure delight on my face when popping the delicacy into my mouth.
Chookets can be personalized with a variety of cream fillings, including fruit flavors, and a delectable chocolate mousse made with high-quality Belgian chocolate.
“The chocolate mousse is really fluffy and very light,” Karine said.
Chookets can also be assembled into a tiered cake called a croquembouche. Frequently seen at weddings in France, the little pastries are stacked into an impressive tower, and each one is topped with one of four flavors of icing, including their irresistible white or dark chocolate ganache.
“It’s perfect to eat in one bite,” Karine explains, which is convenient for those wedding attendees who love sweets but don’t want to have to sit down for dessert and miss the dancing.
“We love to participate in a big event for a family,” Karine said of her joy in baking wedding cakes.
The couple moved here from Provence in December, and together they make the perfect pastry duo. Matthieu has seven years of catering experience, and Karine was an architect in France. She uses her design skills to decorate their creations.
“We are different because for events and parties, the customers can customize all the cakes,” Karine said of their many cake flavors, which include classics like chocolate to specialty options like chai or lavender. Fillings include fresh strawberry whipped cream, mousses from mocha to mango, and classic icings like fresh whipped cream or buttercream. Cakes are even customizable to be gluten- or dairy-free.
“We hope that customers like French pastries because we have many new ideas for more,” Karine said.
With delectable additions such as fresh flaky éclairs and chookets, I have a feeling that any desserts this team brings to S.B. are certain to result in joie de vivre!
2018 Cliff Drive, 845-5519, chooket.com