“But when we got such a positive reaction to the Bundt-style pound cakes we shared with neighbors and friends, and at the post office,” Nicole said, “it hit us that we had something unique.”
The mother and daughter put their heads together and went through some of the family recipes that had been handed down, and researched recipes for other flavors.
“I’d come up with the recipes and Nicole helped me come up with interesting names for the cakes, all of which are pound cakes made in Bundt cake pans,” said Cummings. “That’s why we have names like ‘Apple Dance,’ ‘Happy Strawberry,’ ‘Pineapple Party’ and ‘Lemon Love,’ the favorite so far.”
While the mother does the heavy lifting—everything from sourcing ingredients to measuring to baking—Nicole does most of the mixing.
“I like wearing my apron and getting a little flour on me,” she said. “And I’ve gotten pretty good about cracking eggs and keeping shells out.”
The family business also includes Nicole’s aunt, Ebony Duff, who helps with promotions and scheduling events for Katie’s Cakes.
By taking part in events like a recent Black Business Expo, they began to see a market for their $40 homemade cakes.
“We just made dozens for a recent event, and sort of learned as we went along how to produce that many,” said Cummings, noting that they only have one oven. “We put in a few long days.”