Over the next several years, I dabbled in dessert-making for friends and
family, using and honing the skills I'd learned. In 2002, my wife asked me
to make desserts for a work party. For the event, I packaged
cheesecakes and the other creations professionally; I wanted to make an
impression. When she returned from the party, she told me that she'd
been asked what bakery she bought the desserts from. At first, I thought
she was joking. I'd had no professional training, and my wife was famous
for pulling my leg. She assured me she was serious. “No, Matt,” she said.
“Everyone wants to know where they can buy your desserts.”
Through this experience, Desserts by Matthew was born.
The business has grown steadily; I had to put it on hold due to my wife's
health issues in 2005. After her passing in 2008, I decided to combine my
personal experience with professional training. I attended the Art Institute
in Philadelphia, studying Baking and Pastry. My background combined
with the skillful teaching of my instructors helped me achieve the
Excellence in Baking and Pastry award, the only award given by the
School for Pastry.
Many of the finest bakers and chefs in the world
owe much of their skill to their ancestors; I am no
different. My grandmother and I would bake
during the holidays; she was of German
descent, and noticed my interest in baking. We
started with Christmas cookies, and as I
matured, she taught me more of the craft.
When she passed in 1993, we celebrated her
life with some of her favorite culinary treats. I
made her famous cinnamon buns, and everyone
said it was as if she made them herself.