We’re thrilled to announce a new partnership with local baking powerhouse Whisked!. We chatted with owner Jenna Huntsberger about her path to a full-time baking career, a few hurdles along the way, and our partnership in creating the mouthwatering Salted Dark Chocolate Chip Oat Cookie, crafted exclusively for Cava Grill.
Did you have a culinary role model growing up?
My parents were foodies before it was cool. When we were little, we lived in Oregon, but we rarely every took any trips to see the gorgeous places around the state. We’d just go to the cities and eat.
Tell us how you came to start Whisked!.
I was always a home baker and it was something I loved to do growing up. After starting my blog, Modern Domestic, in 2008, I became obsessed. I started interviewing pastry chefs about the field and their creative process. I finally decided to make the leap and leave my office job. After working for a few small food businesses, I eventually started Whisked! in 2011. I found out the owner of the 14th and U farmers’ market was looking for bakers, so I launched specifically to sell at markets.
I started with four different bases to see which I liked most. I then went through different iterations, adding oats, messing with sugar content, trying honey. I tweaked every element in the cookie to make sure it was the best it could be. We tested for about a month and went through about 15 iterations.
At that point, I had been through so many recipes that I thought I’d never get it right. I had a Google doc of versions and was looking over it. Finally, when I got down to the one with the oats and the right chew and the honey, I wrote “This is it! We have it!”
Have you ever had any epic fails in the kitchen?
What makes you most excited to go to work each day?
I like that we produce a product. When I was in an office environment, I just didn’t know what I did with my time. Now I know. My favorite part is selling at the markets. You really can see how people love your food and how they react to it. The way they’ve supported my business is really touching.
What has been your proudest moment since starting Whisked?
This is a big moment for me. This partnership is the sort of thing I’ve been looking for. I’ve thought a lot about businesses in DC that are doing interesting things and you guys are at the top of the list.
Baked goods are so nostalgic. They tap into memories of being a kid and growing up, celebrating special events with desserts. Because of that it’s so tied with your memory and history.