Second-year students host their own bake sale every three weeks during the fall, as a part of their customer relationship management course.
“Each class has around 16 students and every class has a different date for the future bake sales,” said Kennedie Smith, a second-year baking and pastry arts student.
“When I started teaching this course, I didn’t recognize how much expectation there was. There’s actually a big reputation and a big following for the Christmas sale,” said Rose Warden, a baking instructor at SAIT.
Bake sales are usually on Thursdays due to the lunch buffet at The Highwood.
Dedicated customers of The Highwood are interested in the ‘whole SAIT experience.’
“Often, they’ll check out The Marketplace as well as The Butchery,” said Warden.
Every bake sale is started with a new class, and the students are encouraged to come up with their own signature products.
“They get to plan what to make, what day will the next bake sale be and plan the overall atmosphere,” Warden said.
The instructors suggest students have a wide variety of products to appeal to the audience.
At previous bake sales, students provided many gluten-free options and received requests to make vegan products as well.
“Surprisingly, we make something and clients won’t recognize it’s made without flour,” said Warden.
“I find that it takes a certain student to be really interested and have the background knowledge in creating vegan products.”
Each bake sale has its own theme. For example, if the theme was Thanksgiving, the students would make products related to that, said Smith.
“We say to the students that if they want to be successful and feel good about seeing their product selling, they have to make something that customers will want,” said Warden.
“Since this is a Christmas bake sale, there will be a wide variety of holiday-themed products.”
SAIT has had an annual bake sale for the past 40 years, and the expectations are high for students.
It takes around two weeks for students to plan the next bake sale.
On the first few days of the customer relationship management course, the instructors will tell the class what to expect, when to start, where it will be held, what to make and how much product the students will need.
“I really do my best to step aside, just to let the students plan and make it feel like it’s their project,” said Warden.
The course focuses on merchandising, promotion, customer service, sales techniques, team building, leadership and interpersonal skills.
“The bake sale is a great way to combine all of these skills, along with selling and showcasing their products,” said Warden.
“The course is a fun way for students to be involved with their program,” said Jessica Truong, a second-year baking and pastry arts student.
“We get good feedback from customers.”
Warden said the best experience from the bake sale is the public event, where students promote their products.
Students will design posters and give out pamphlets to invite friends and family.
“It’s neat to see all relationships students have with people they bring into the bake sale,” said Warden.
“That’s where all the best sales have been made because they understand that it supports the students’ work.”
All proceeds from the bake sale are to help improve the hospitality and tourism program’s labs, facilities and equipment.
Recipe for Mango Swiss Rolls
Prep time: Approximately 14 hours
Yields: 48 rolls (18cm long)
128g Baking powder
480g Vegetable oil
3840g AP flour
Using room temperature eggs, whip until foamed. Add sugar in slowly. Sift dry ingredients together and set aside. Add liquids in slowly. Add sifted dry ingredients in slowly, scrape sides of mixing bowl.
Bake at 170 degrees Celsius for 12-15 min.
5520g Icing sugar
9.5g Lemon juice
380g Egg whites
With paddle attachment, mix fats (butter and shortening) with sugar until well blended. Add in egg whites, lemon juice, and vanilla and turn to high speed until mixture becomes light and fluffy. For softer buttercream, mix in water.
6000g Mango puree
Whisk pectin and sugar together to prevent lumping. Using immersion blender, mix pectin/sugar into mango puree. Cook mango puree until it boils, stirring constantly as mango heats up fast and can burn easily. When mango puree boils, remove from heat immediately. Cool down with ice bath/water bath for immediate use.