BY AVA GROSS
Based on a French holiday cake called a Bûche de Noël, the French Honors Society hosted their annual bake off on December 20.
French Culture is rich in food and confection varieties. One of the organizers, Jessie Kim said, “It’s no secret that most of the students took French as a language because of the variety of desserts that France has to offer!” Since French desserts are such a staple, more specifically the Buche, the FHS hosts the bake off.
Alisha Wasim said, “It became a tradition because the Bûche is a French culture staple, and everyone loves cake, so combining cake and a fun get together with friends, it soon became a thing.” It is now an annual event as everyone enjoys cake and being with their friends.
The cakes are traditionally filled with a sort of cream and decorated with chocolate, cherries, raspberries, herbs, and other things to top it. Daniel Maichin and Amy Jo Mahony won first-place in this year’s contest. Maichin explained, “Ours was a regular vanilla sponge with an orange mascarpone filling. With the traditional buche being mostly chocolate, we wanted to try something different.” Their creative take on the cake helped these students win the contest.
Maichin was already an experienced baker before the contest, with 3 years of taking culinary and baking for fun, too. Mahony, Maichin’s teammate, claims that she couldn’t have made the cake without him. She stated, “Dan is the one who really took initiative and told me how to do everything correctly. Without him I’d probably be lost.” Maichin took the initiative, and Mahony followed his lead to create the winning cake together.
The third-place winner, Farhana Momo, was not a very experienced baker until recently. Momo said, “I first started baking more when we were under lockdown for the pandemic, and it was mostly just for fun.”
Whether students baked or just tasted the cakes, having a good time with peers was the theme of this event. Kim, who baked with Ashley-Marie Tecarro, said, “Everything I bake, or cook doesn’t turn out very well, but I’m not too concerned if it doesn’t come out perfect because I know spending time with my baking partner is already a great experience itself.”
Photos by Ava Gross