Today, we’re chatting all things weddings with Julia Aden of Süss, a cake studio and delivery service based in East London. Süss prides itself on creating beautiful wedding cakes, without resorting to any artificial flavour or colouring. Making cakes that feed not only the body but the soul as well, Julia talks us through all from her jewellery essentials to how Süss came about.
Tell us about your journey to becoming Süss Cake Studio?
My baking career started from a young age, really through my Oma (Grandma). I would often go round her house and be taught about the sweet treats of the kitchen and how to finely mix the ingredients together and she would often sneak an extra slice of cake on my plate when my parents weren't around. After starting off a career in educational science and social work, it was at this point I went back to my true roots and followed my passion. My baking career began in Germany where I was appointed kitchen manager, but my fascination with the world of cakes of London led me to take a trip over and allowed me to work in several renowned bakeries where I learnt how important a sustainable approach is in the kitchen. Following this, conversations began about starting my own business and with a little encouragement from friends and family, Süss was born.
The word 'süss' translates from German to 'sweet' , a nod to my German heritage. All too often, 'sweet’ is a word associated with unhealthy eating and snacking. At Süss, we believe in being kinder to ourselves and not denying our bodies the sweet pleasures we crave. We do this while working with the season, using the sweetness of what is ripe and ready each month. What's more, nature is so abundant in naturally vibrant flavours and colours, there is no need for anything artificial. With our focus on local produce and organic ingredients, it was only natural to cut down on refined sugar in our recipes where we can while indulging your appetite.
What does a typical day look like for you?
First of all it would normally be an early start, being a one woman business this means I need to be on top of all the admin side of things; this includes dealing with all the customer queries, any ingredient orders that I need to make, as well as sorting out any deliveries for the day. After a few hours of being on my laptop I will then get started with my favourite part of the day, making those delicious cakes. I will normally be in the kitchen until the early evening before I'm able to switch the oven off and catch up on one of my favourite shows, meet up with some friends or eat my partner's delicious dinners as he's taking over the kitchen at that point thankfully.
You’ve got 5 minutes to get ready, what are you wearing?
Floaty trousers, t-shirt, oversized shirt + big warm coat but I am so ready for all my summer dresses to come out.
What has been your favourite cake to create?
I had an amazing opportunity to create a wedding cake at the national gallery in Trafalgar Square last summer, this involved dry-pressing some cosmo flowers onto the design of the cake and was a big moment in the short lifespan of my business to be creating a cake at such an iconic venue.
Have you had any interesting/funny requests for your wedding cakes?
Süss has such a strong and clear style, so the customers who do come to us normally already have an idea of what they want based on our designs. Normally if there are any designs using fondant for example that we don't offer we normally have several suggestions for other local businesses that will be able to help!
"At Suss we believe in being kinder to ourselves and not denying our bodies the sweet pleasures we crave."
We talk about jewellery being our everyday armour, how does jewellery make you feel?
Jewellery, to me, is not just an accessory but a source of personal expression and has the remarkable ability to make me feel confident, beautiful, and unique. It adds a touch of glamour and elegance to my everyday life, giving me a sense of strength and individuality. I love to wear the same pieces over and over again, however I am trying to mix it up lately so they last for longer.
What are your favourite pieces in your jewellery box at the moment?
Would have to be my beautiful engagement ring which my partner had designed personally for me or a ring that I share with my two other siblings, both pieces being special in their own way.
Any advice for a beginner starting out?
I used my favourite magazine (Courier) business plan template at the start which really helped lay everything out for me. I think you need to also just be prepared to reach out to all your friends and family around for help as much as possible. It's such an important part of any business having that support network; so you know that you are not in this on your own.
What about baking do you love the most?
I love the whole creative process of transforming basic ingredients into delicious and beautiful treats - being able to give this gift to others and put smiles on others faces. Creating my own recipes is something that brings me joy as well. Sometimes I just write lots of different flavours on little notes and lay them all out on a table to find new ways of pairing them together.
Can you tell us about any fun exciting projects coming up?
I'm right in the midst of the wedding season currently so every single week is a new fun and exciting project. I love carefully curating the loving couple's ideas and the atmosphere on each wedding day. There's a certain energy in the air which is just great to be around. As well as meeting all the different suppliers and just being a part of the couple's special day!