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  • Bridney C.

Q/A with Cupcake Baker, Shayleen Rivera

By Bridney C.

Shayleen Rivera smiling with her 8-month-old son, Kairo.

It is a pleasure to interview Shayleen Rivera for the Sweet Scoop.

Shayleen is a 19-year-old baker from Groton, Connecticut. Self-taught, she bakes all of her cupcakes from scratch and creates her original fun recipes.

According to Shayleen, she says even though she came from a Spanish cooking background, she did not come from a baking background. She always dreamed about being a baker since she was a little girl and is happy to have put her talents into fruition.

In this edition of Q&A, Shayleen Rivera opened up about when baking came into her life, what made her decide to start baking, and the most popular cupcake she has made so far.

Salted Caramel Cupcakes

Bridney C: Who inspired you to start baking? Have you always been passionate about baking? Shayleen Rivera: I don't know where I got inspiration honestly its just something that grew inside me, hence becoming one of my passions. It's always been an interest of mine, so I decided to take the next step and bake for other people.

BC: From the earliest you can remember, when did baking come into your life? SR: Baking came into my life at least around elementary school, to fall asleep I'd imagine myself being a baker on Food Network with my own show. I took culinary at New London High School in my junior year and I did really well, my group always wanted me to be head chef for our group because they loved how I'd double the recipe and they always came out good.

Oreo Red Velvet Cupcake

BC: What made you decide to start baking and put yourself out there on social media? SR: What made me get out there and start baking for the public was the whole COVID-19 quarantine and it has made it really hard to buy the things my son needs. As a parent, I have to ensure that my son always has what he needs, and in addition, I know this virus has taken a toll on a lot of families in close communities. Sweets make people happy and I love making people happy, so I'm just trying to do my part to lift people's spirits during this rough time.

BC: On average, how long does it take to prepare and bake a cupcake from scratch? SR: On average it takes me about two hours to complete one simple style, such as a vanilla cupcake from start to finish. I put my all into my recipes, and I make sure to perfect the taste, texture, and presentation to the best of my ability.

Banana Pudding Cupcakes

BC: What is the most popular cupcake or dessert you have made so far? What is your favorite type of dessert to bake? Why? SR: I think the most popular has been my Oreo Cheesecake Cookies and Vanilla Cupcakes with strawberry filling and hand-whipped buttercream frosting. My banana pudding cupcakes are for the win though.

BC: Even though you're just getting started, what else is in store for you, baking wise? Are there any other types of desserts you would love to bake in the future? SR: Honestly, I'm down for anything i love a challenge, and I'll bake anything if I have the materials to do so. I'm excited for what's coming, honestly I'm creative and I love to create things that set me aside from other bakers. I hope to be able to expand and start doing bigger things like wedding cakes and cakes for celebrations.

Vanilla Rainbow Confetti Cupcake [Left] and Strawberry Confetti Cupcake [Right]

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