HomeNewsPress ReleasesRoula Kadimi of Humber College earns top spot in Dawn Foods Student Cake Competition with 5-tier homage to Canadian icons

Roula Kadimi of Humber College earns top spot in Dawn Foods Student Cake Competition with 5-tier homage to Canadian icons

Roula Kadimi, a student in the baking and pastry arts management program at Humber College, won first place in the “My Canada” Student Cake Competition sponsored by Dawn Foods. The competition, designed to highlight the professional bakers of tomorrow, was held at Bakery Showcase in Toronto May 5-6.

Kadimi’s five-tier cake was themed “Behold My Canada.” She described her entry in part as follows:

“At its base, it is a homage to Canadian icons: a maple syrup bottle, a beaver, a hockey stick, and a puck, and maple leaves all crafted carefully from gum paste and isomalt sugar. Above, a maple tree trunk rises proudly, symbolizing the strength and resilience I found upon arriving in this land.

“The third-tier dances with the four seasons, capturing the essence of Canada’s diverse landscapes. Each season, from the blossoms of spring to the icy embrace of winter, tells a story of transformation and wonder.

“The fourth tier unfurls the Canadian flag in three dimensions, a testament to unity and pride.

“And crowning this masterpiece is Banff Lake, serene and majestic, reflecting the beauty I yearn to explore.”

Among many techniques used, Kadimi applied wrapping techniques to encase gum paste maple leaves, a hockey stick and puck and other figures, and isomalt sugar to create the bottle of maple syrup. Graham crumbs were employed to add an earthy touch of soil.

She used a crack technique, torch fondant, and wafer papers to create a natural wood texture for the trunk and drew 2D shapes using a cocoa butter base and added royal icing effects. She piped using the Lambeth-style technique with royal icing and crafted gum paste flowers, such as roses and jasmine. To give the effect of water, she used gelatin and chocolate ganache in shades of white and gray.

Kadimi won $2,000 and coverage in Bakers Journal.

Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Lisa Thompson congratulates student cake artists on their talent and creativity. Photos: Bakers Journal

Fellow Humber student Kelsea Pacson won second place and the People’s Choice Award.

Pacson’s “Canadian Comfort” cake expressed a feeling of home:

“Immediately when I think of Canada, it reminds me of home. I wanted to bring a sense of comfort and warmth to my cake where the theme is Canadian fall. Many components of this cake translate to the flavours of the actual cake.”

Techniques used included piping, fondant work, hand painting and sugar work.

Vanessa Levesque, also of Humber College, earned third place.

Levesque described her entry (“A Sweet Story, Eh!”) as follows:

“The inspiration behind my creation reflects cherished Canadian memories created with family and exploring small pastry shops during my trips as I matured, which motivated me to pursue a career as a pastry chef.”

Techniques Levesque employed included fondant work, cocoa butter painting, small gum paste people and hand-sculpted figures, airbrushing and the creation of wood, concrete, stone and brick textures.

Students highlighted aspects of Canadian regional foods, ingredients and culture. They crafted cakes ahead of the competition that were displayed throughout Showcase and created complementary cake-centred plated desserts featuring complementary flavours for the judges to evaluate on presentation, technique, creativity and taste.

Judges were Austin D’Souza, business development manager for Dawn Food, Marlene O’Connell, membership director for Retail Bakers of America, and Aron Weber, chair and instructor for the professional baking arts program at Vancouver Island University.

Thank you to Dawn Foods for its sponsorship of the competition, which provides a showcase for the students’ talent and creativity.

All students will be featured in online and/or print coverage for Bakers Journal.


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