My whole life has been dedicated to an art, a craft, a science meant to bring people around a table with the intention to nourish and satisfy. My name is Carly Rapp and I’m addicted to baking. Feels good to admit it. I hope for anyone reading this, you may be able to go along with this little journey of self realization and I hope that one day I may be able to bake for you.
As a young girl, sitting at my mom’s kitchen counter, I was thrilled whenever I could assist with a stirring project watching different ingredients swirl and combine. Trusted with knives and scissors at a young age, I was lucky to have parents that only encouraged my passion. As I quickly outgrew my Easy Bake Oven, I was given the opportunity of a lifetime. At eleven years old, I started working at a bakery; I folded cake and cupcake boxes for three summers gazing longingly at the cupcakes, cookies, and cakes being decorated around me. Layers of paper cuts became the first of many battle scars.
It wasn’t until the bakery was short-handed that they placed a piping bag in my hand and gave me a shot. Not only did I never fold a box there again, but I also fell even more in love with baking and creating food. I was lucky enough to further develop my skills at culinary school. It was the first place I realized there were other people as enveloped in food as I was. My limited free time was spent huddled around cookbooks with friends, testing wacky ideas in the dorm kitchens, and studying for the infamously difficult wine exams.
After culinary school, I found myself seeking more knowledge and guidance – this came in the form of a 100 acre organic farm in Ireland, one that doubled as a cookery school. Here, I found more like minded people with a huge passion for food gathered to learn from some of the best in the industry. After a deep dive into agriculture and sustainable farming practices in Ireland, I found myself in Boston working at Middle Eastern Bakery. I cannot begin to count how many irreplaceable life and professional lessons I learned with that job. If anyone ever needs someone to repair their sous vide machine, I’m your gal. With each experience, my love, passion and borderline obsession for food grew exponentially. Not borderline, it’s a full on obsession (if you haven’t been able to tell yet). As different jobs and learning experiences in the industry brought me to different states, I soon found myself in Minnesota working at The Bachelor Farmer. Though my time was short, it was incredibly sweet, pun intended. When the Covid-19 pandemic began its destruction, I found myself without an outlet for creativity and without a way to use my hands. But, everyone must eat! In a time when so much is unknown and we crave just an ounce of comfort, I was lucky enough to create an outlet for my passion.
Baked and Rapp’d, my small catering company, was born out of the need to sustain my love and passion for baking. As a small cottage company, I offer the residents in my apartment building and nearby apartments a small holiday menu of desserts and breads. As holidays this year may look very different than the year before, I hope people still feel the need and the desire to gather around a table no matter how few seats. If I can bring a small amount of comfort to someone’s table through a homemade pastry, then I have done my job. Just as much as I love slipping into a pair of sweatpants, I love the comfort that baked goods can bring to people. My recipes and creations aim to play into that warmth and craveability, while adding a little flair in the form of my travels. Although sustainability has many different meanings, to me it is about longevity of comfort and warmth.
I would be honored to bring a slice of warmth to your table, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for any pastry needs.