Sweet Bytes is four years old! I think this year was the toughest one, but it pushed us and taught us the most as small business owners. I spent many, many hours from January into September preparing to move into a brick and mortar shop, and by the end of September reconciled with the idea of remaining a home bakery. I wrote a long post about it and then deleted it. I decided that it wasn’t an important story. What is important is where we go from here.

I was looking back over our “Three Years Old” post and it makes me proud to know the opportunities to share my love of baking keep coming. I am always so excited to be included in family traditions, like the Thanksgiving meal, and milestone events, like weddings. It’s a warm, happy feeling to know that I have been able to help make those times special.

Thank you for reading! Now onward down the pie path we go.

Ganache, simply put, is real chocolate blended with cream. It’s a simple concept but has a learning curve because the chocolate will not willingly blend with the cream upon their first encounter. The chocolate has to be coerced into accepting the cream and not seizing up or separating. It’s very much like a real-life relationship!

Ganache can be used to make confections such as the much-loved chocolate truffle or it can be used as a sauce, frosting or topping for a multitude of desserts. It is very versatile and yet, the simplicity of ingredients makes this my favorite chocolate frosting or filling for cakes. It holds up very well for display and many decorating styles and makes an excellent support for fondant. It’s also magnificent as a pie filling. I probably could go on and on about it all day. Bubba Gump loved shrimp, I love chocolate ganache.

Yes, I’m still here! What better way to celebrate living than S’mores? August 10th has been declared National S’mores Day in the United States. Although, people in Oklahoma probably won’t be building any campfires in August. Maybe up north this is campfire weather. Here in OKC  it’s the hottest time of the year and we are usually in a burn ban and not even allowed to grill, let alone build a campfire! Ha ha!

I do just love all of the “National Days” and Celebration Days. Who even made these up? If I meet them, I will thank them, because today WE DINE ON S’MORES!

I haven’t made time to post much lately. All of my news is good news, but it’s nothing that I want to talk about… yet! I can’t wait until I can tell you everything that the Sweet Bytes Team has been up to. Hopefully it will be VERY SOON! Until next time! – Mikel

About 2 years ago I was looking at the Metropolitan Library System website and they were asking for people to submit their “library story.” I cannot tell you in this small space what a fan of the library I am, but I can tell you how excited I was to write my library story for them. I was so eager to tell them all of the wonderful ways that I have used the library over the years that I just wrote and wrote, straight from my heart. After I submitted it, I didn’t hear anything back from them, time went on, and I went about my business. Eventually didn’t even think about it and really forgot I wrote it.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago, I get a call from the library’s Director of Development and Volunteer Services, Heather Zeoli! She was preparing the presentations for the Literary Voices annual fundraising event and she asked if they could share MY library story! Rene and I got to go to the dinner at the Oklahoma City Golf and Country Club, meet the guest author, Lisa Scottoline, and it was just such an honor to have my story inspire others to donate their time and money to the library! Also, while attending the dinner, I too was inspired to give back to the library. I have taken so much and it is always there when I need knowledge or entertainment. I’ve never considered where all of those amazing resources come from and it never really occurred to me that volunteers and donations make our remarkable Oklahoma City Metropolitan Library system possible.

It’s funny how things work out. In case you are curious about what my library story could have possibly been about, I will tell you a bit. I am an avid learner and reader, but I haven’t always put myself in the best life situations and often times life just seems like I’m downhill, if you know what I mean. So, I have to dig myself out of holes and find mentors the best way I can. The library is FULL of role models for when I come up short, and information for when I don’t know how, and adventures for when I just need a break. I have used it in every way. When I made the leap from school teacher to baker, I was starting from the bottom and I used the library to help me every step of the way, from business planning to recipes. As long as there are libraries, I know that I will always be able to figure out what I need to know to get to the next level.

Northwest Library

Lately we’ve had a crazy calendar! We’ve been booked or closed for large chunks of time and there is no end in site. The nature of being an artisan bakery is that every thing we bake is very involving and time consuming. From slicing apples, to zesting lemons, to tempering the eggs for a beautiful cream pie, the steps we take to complete an order have to be precisely done or the results would not meet our expectations. Once an order is placed it becomes our number one priority. Big orders and custom cakes can end up taking several days to prepare. We mark the calendar “booked” and block out the necessary time so that we can dedicate ourselves to making our orders the very best that we can.

Thank goodness our customers understand! If you’ve been a customer, this post was just old news. If you are new, I just wanted to personally tell you, it’s a very small bakery, but good things come to those who wait!

I can’t believe it is time for fall already. That will mean we’ve been operating this home bakery for 3 whole years come November! I guess since it all started in the fall, I feel especially connected to the season. It seems like it always brings new ideas and new opportunities. When I think of fall I think of abundance. Read More