Updated: Apr 27, 2022
Soukaina is a self-taught artisanal baker who started her own business in September 2020. She initially began baking and experimenting with ingredients around 2014-2016 and soon developed a strong liking towards the craft, finding it therapeutic and relaxing. In 2017 her hobby grew into more of serious interest and through trial-and-error, Soukaina always strives for excellence when finding the perfect ingredients and recipe.
Soukaina comes from a Moroccan background and has lived in the UK since 2014. She considers her culture when it comes to baking and creating recipes, always adding her own special touch to form unique flavours and textures for everyone to enjoy. Her inspiration comes from many forms of art, but nature is the one Soukaina admits to being inspired by the most. From vibrant colours to exotic flavours, she always has a way of translating her love for art into delicious homemade recipes.
Early days and inspiration
The artisan actually named the business after her daughter, Aisha. As the owner, Soukaina has been through many ups and downs but never let the latter get the best of her. Soukaina admitted that she was on the verge of giving up after a year of opening her business due to struggling to make things work. However, she knew that deep down, her passion for baking would never disappear, along with positive messages from her supporters encouraged her to strive forward and continue what she loved doing the most.
No matter the form, all artists take inspiration from fellow creators and add their own personal twist. Soukaina has always been influenced by French bakers and how they use their ingredients. One example would be Cédric Grolet, an executive pastry chef at Le Meurice in Paris. Grolet's pastries focus on fruits and the reinterpretation of traditional French desserts, including a mix of lively colours and fascinating flavours. A couple of famous bakers, including Pierre Hermé and chocolatier Antonio Bachour, grew up in Puerto Rico and is now an American Baker. However, her ultimate inspiration and role model would be someone who’s very close, her own mother, an excellent cook whom she has always looked up to.
Soukaina’s baking is a fused combination of French, Japanese and Arabic touches that are the brand's signature. One of her favourite creations, the Exotica Tart, includes the inspiration from Cédric Grolet’s recipes containing fruit. Of course, Soukaina’s originality comes from finding and mixing the highest quality ingredients to form her own scrumptious dessert. The Exotica is a light combination with passion fruit, caramelised coconut ganache, finished with a delicate swirl on top of the mousse. Nonetheless, with the Exotica coming in close to being Soukaina’s favourite, her Honey cake recipe just manages to take the top spot: “Russian honey cake is 7 layers of soft, caramelised honey cakes that taste like the fine marriage of lotus biscuits, honey graham crackers and gingerbread cookies, sandwiched between a cloud-like sour cream & whipped cream.” Sounds unbelievably delicious!
Goals and future plans
Aisha’s Pastry is constantly growing and developing as a fresh and new business. No goal for the artisanal baker is too big or small, both short-term and long-term. Soukaina plans to publish her own cookbook in the near future to encourage other bakers, whether they are entirely new to the craft or have years of experience, to continue doing what they love best and experiment with new flavours ingredients and techniques. Soukaina also hopes to one day open up a Café where her recipes and desserts will be available for everyone to try. In the meantime, Soukaina wants people to get inspired by her creations and know her by her passions, but to also get to know her supporters and audience on a more personal basis by showcasing her personality and love for her baking through social media.
From all of us at 8pron
We want to thank Soukaina for sharing such an inspiring story. We are blessed to have collaborated with small businesses and true artisans like hers; it brought real-life meaning to why 8pron was created and brought so much importance to us all.
Over just a few months, a great many have supported her small business. Everyone who has tasted her creations is singing in praise. We at 8pron hope to share more inspiring stories like hers; yummy treats are just bonuses that come with true artisans like Soukaina.
You will find her tasty sweet treats in London and Acton areas (W3), and you’ll be happy to know that she does deliver to nearby residents. One day soon, we won’t be surprised to see a cake shop or café with a big-name sign that reads “Aisha’s Pastry” or find sweets supplied by her.
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