It was while lying on the couch and crying during the final episode of the sixth season of the “Great British Baking Show” that I discovered my love for baking. I was desperately sick with the flu, but somehow with each bake, I became even more entranced by the process of mixing sugar and flour with the perfect ratio of liquid into a bowl to create a tasty creation. In the final moments of that season, I remember listening to (spoiler alert) Nadiya Hussain, the season winner, say that “I’m never gonna put boundaries on myself ever again. I’m never gonna say ‘I can’t do it’.’ I’m never gonna say ‘maybe’. I’m never gonna say, ‘I don’t think I can’. I can and I will.”

I vowed to do the same thing when it comes to baking. 

A few weeks ago, I was approached by a casting agent to audition for a new Food Network show about home bakers called “Bakeaway Camp”. The premise of the show is that home bakers are taken away to “summer camp” to refine baking techniques and compete in challenges. 

Obviously, I thought I’d be a perfect fit. 

Before you get too excited, you should know I wasn’t cast in the show. They did say, though, they would consider me again for season 2. That gives me a bit more time to develop my baking skills. 

As part of my audition process, I had to piece together my baking history and how I developed my home baking skills. Here are some things you should know:

First, I am a completely self-taught baker. Most of the time it shows. YouTube has become my baking teacher, and anytime I don’t know how to do a technique in a recipe, I look up a video and hope that I can replicate the skill that’s being demonstrated. 

Second, I grew up in a home where we baked cookies and cakes, but they were always from a box mix. We kept flour and sugar in the house, but never yeast or traditional baking supplies. 

Third, I mix up baking powder and baking soda all the time. I also mix up teaspoons and tablespoons. This can definitely be a problem when baking!

The “Bakeaway Camp” casting agent found me on Instagram because of a photo I posted of a Barbie cake from Mabel’s 3rd birthday last year. The purple Barbie cake was a 4-layer chocolate cake with strawberry buttercream, completely wrapped in marshmallow fondant that I hand-dyed with two coordinating shades of purple. In total, I spent about 8 hours making and decorating the cake after three months of preparing by watching countless videos on YouTube. This research resulted in Mabel requesting to watch time lapse cake videos daily! 

Another part of the audition process was recording an audition tape in which a casting agent asked me a series of questions over Skype. The casting agent wanted to know more about our birthday baking tradition. 

When Mabel turned 2, we established a tradition of asking her what kind of cake she would like for her birthday. For her birthday that year, Mabel asked for a “puppy cake.” So I baked cookies and cream cupcakes from scratch and made chocolate buttercream that I piped to construct a puppy dog face, topped with Oreo ears, M&M eyes, a chocolate chip nose, and a jelly bean mouth. 

For her 3rd birthday, Mabel obviously had more words to express the type of cake she wanted, and it was clear she wanted a layered Barbie cake. When Mabel saw her cake, she hugged it so tightly that she left the imprint of her hand on the fondant skirt. That was the moment I first truly experienced the joys of baking. 

Fast forward to her 4th birthday, and Mabel once again requested a Barbie cake, but this time a “spiderwoman” version. She requested a berry cake with berry buttercream and a berry compote running through each layer. A few days before Mabel’s birthday, Emily and I took Mabel and Matilda to a playdate at a friend’s house. Another Mom at the playdate asked Mabel what she wanted for her birthday. Mabel responded, “My daddy is making me a Barbie cake.” 

My heart fluttered. She didn’t mention opening presents, getting new toys, or having a little party. She mentioned her daddy making her a cake. As Mabel and our little family is discovering, baking is one of the purest and simplest ways to express love and joy for someone. 

Baking has become a normal rhythm of our family’s life now. Mabel and Matilda love to pull over their little chairs, roll up their sleeves, and practice their baking skills too. 

We are definitely home bakers, and it shows. 

We definitely find joy in baking, and it shows. 

About me

Hi, my name is Tyler Moore. My wife and I live with our two young daughters in a 700-square-foot apartment in New York City. I began my tidying journey when an early-30’s crisis invited me to reflect upon, challenge, and change my patterns of daily living. I quit my job as a school administrator, returned to teaching, and started Tidy Dad to help others tidy, simplify, and find joy in their lives. I firmly believe the tidying process can transform your life. I’d love for you to join me in exploring ways that tidying can make room for what’s important in life. 


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tidy home

June 15, 2019

The Humble Beginnings of a Self-Taught Home Baker 

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It was while lying on the couch and crying during the final episode of the sixth season of the “Great British Baking Show” that I discovered my love for baking. I was desperately sick with the flu, but somehow with each bake, I became even more entranced by the process of mixing sugar and flour with the perfect ratio of liquid into a bowl to create a tasty creation. In the final moments of that season, I remember listening to (spoiler alert) Nadiya Hussain, the season winner, say that “I’m never gonna put boundaries on myself ever again. I’m never gonna say ‘I can’t do it’.’ I’m never gonna say ‘maybe’. I’m never gonna say, ‘I don’t think I can’. I can and I will.”

I vowed to do the same thing when it comes to baking. 

A few weeks ago, I was approached by a casting agent to audition for a new Food Network show about home bakers called “Bakeaway Camp”. The premise of the show is that home bakers are taken away to “summer camp” to refine baking techniques and compete in challenges. 

Obviously, I thought I’d be a perfect fit. 

Before you get too excited, you should know I wasn’t cast in the show. They did say, though, they would consider me again for season 2. That gives me a bit more time to develop my baking skills. 

As part of my audition process, I had to piece together my baking history and how I developed my home baking skills. Here are some things you should know:

First, I am a completely self-taught baker. Most of the time it shows. YouTube has become my baking teacher, and anytime I don’t know how to do a technique in a recipe, I look up a video and hope that I can replicate the skill that’s being demonstrated. 

Second, I grew up in a home where we baked cookies and cakes, but they were always from a box mix. We kept flour and sugar in the house, but never yeast or traditional baking supplies. 

Third, I mix up baking powder and baking soda all the time. I also mix up teaspoons and tablespoons. This can definitely be a problem when baking!

The “Bakeaway Camp” casting agent found me on Instagram because of a photo I posted of a Barbie cake from Mabel’s 3rd birthday last year. The purple Barbie cake was a 4-layer chocolate cake with strawberry buttercream, completely wrapped in marshmallow fondant that I hand-dyed with two coordinating shades of purple. In total, I spent about 8 hours making and decorating the cake after three months of preparing by watching countless videos on YouTube. This research resulted in Mabel requesting to watch time lapse cake videos daily! 

Another part of the audition process was recording an audition tape in which a casting agent asked me a series of questions over Skype. The casting agent wanted to know more about our birthday baking tradition. 

When Mabel turned 2, we established a tradition of asking her what kind of cake she would like for her birthday. For her birthday that year, Mabel asked for a “puppy cake.” So I baked cookies and cream cupcakes from scratch and made chocolate buttercream that I piped to construct a puppy dog face, topped with Oreo ears, M&M eyes, a chocolate chip nose, and a jelly bean mouth. 

For her 3rd birthday, Mabel obviously had more words to express the type of cake she wanted, and it was clear she wanted a layered Barbie cake. When Mabel saw her cake, she hugged it so tightly that she left the imprint of her hand on the fondant skirt. That was the moment I first truly experienced the joys of baking. 

Fast forward to her 4th birthday, and Mabel once again requested a Barbie cake, but this time a “spiderwoman” version. She requested a berry cake with berry buttercream and a berry compote running through each layer. A few days before Mabel’s birthday, Emily and I took Mabel and Matilda to a playdate at a friend’s house. Another Mom at the playdate asked Mabel what she wanted for her birthday. Mabel responded, “My daddy is making me a Barbie cake.” 

My heart fluttered. She didn’t mention opening presents, getting new toys, or having a little party. She mentioned her daddy making her a cake. As Mabel and our little family is discovering, baking is one of the purest and simplest ways to express love and joy for someone. 

Baking has become a normal rhythm of our family’s life now. Mabel and Matilda love to pull over their little chairs, roll up their sleeves, and practice their baking skills too. 

We are definitely home bakers, and it shows. 

We definitely find joy in baking, and it shows. 

tidy home

June 15, 2019

The Humble Beginnings of a Self-Taught Home Baker

tidy home

Are You Ready
To Transform Your
Cleaning Routine?

free Download

About me

Hi, my name is Tyler Moore. My wife and I live with our two young daughters in a 700- square-foot apartment in New York City. I began my tidying journey when an early-30’s crisis invited me to reflect upon, challenge, and change my patterns of daily living. I quit my job as a school administrator, returned to teaching, and started Tidy Dad to help others tidy, simplify, and find joy in their lives. I firmly believe the tidying process can transform your life. I’d love for you to join me in exploring ways that tidying can make room for what’s important in life. 


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