Chef Pixie Sevilla Santos has been playing her A-game for awhile now. She’s been fond of sweet things since she was a child, and even left to study abroad in order to pursue her dreams of becoming a pastry chef. “It was destiny for me to be here,” she remarks. “At that time, Seattle’s Best was just going to open, and they offered me to be their supplier. I already had some recipes that I wanted to label with Forget-Me-Not, but those were the things that customers had to get from my house.” They sublisted a space in Hot Rocks, but it didn’t work out quite so well, so Chef Pixie relegated back to a home-based business. Her clients wanted to be able to reach her at a more accessible location, so she decided to open up Forget Me Not Specialty Cakes, a small store in Makati.
Very well known for her Dulce de Leche Cheesecake and Brazo de Mercedes, Chef Pixie has several other sweet concoctions that she wants would-be clients to know about. The Mocha Praline Cake (P110 a slice; P865 whole) is actually a classic grandmother-owned recipe that Chef Pixie used to bring back the texture and the taste of cakes in the 80s. “Back then, we didn’t rely so much on preservatives,” she shares, “cakes from then were never as soft as the cakes that we have now.” This variant of mocha cake is something that older people are sure to appreciate because it is compact, semi-sweet and very traditional in nature. I was already amazed by the size of the slice alone as cakes nowadays are usually served in small quantities due to the richness of their tastes.
The Turtle Pie (P125 a slice; P975 whole) used to give Chef Pixie quite a bit of trouble. It was a recipe that has only been recently finalized because she did some tweaking to suit her personal tastes and that of her customers as well. “I used to put gelatin into this to make sure it keeps longer,” she adds. “But some customers didn’t like it so much because they found the chocolate to be a little on the hard side.” What she sells in the shop now is the result of the final recipe, which has, indeed, reaped its rewards because it’s just right—it’s not too sweet, the icing on top isn’t too thick, the chocolate is divine, and the walnuts break the monotony by adding a different texture to the pie.
Miel’s Rainbow Cake (P185 for the mini edition) is something that is very popular with kids. Basically, rainbow cake is ordinary white cake made whimsical with food coloring. The little ones will definitely love to have some of these on their birthday parties to complete the festivities.
Mocha Praline Cake
Miel’s Rainbow CakeChef Pixie’s pastry snack items are popular, too, especially among students. The Bronco (P55 a piece; P565 for a set of twelve) is a crossbreed between a—you guessed it—brownie and a cookie. It’s crusty, chunky and stuffed with cookie all the way down to the bottom of its muffin-like form, which makes it a pretty filling snack. The French Macarons (P30 a piece; P175 for a set of seven), did not fail to please, either. They come in ube, calamansi, raspberry, chocolate truffle, pistachio, vanilla bean, coffee, blueberry, caramel, mango, strawberry, and my favorite, lemon.
French Macarons“Last year, it was all about the grandiose and the decorated and the intimidating, but that seems to have changed now,” Chef Pixie comments. “People are starting to want to go back to the basic, traditional desserts.” And that’s where pastry chefs like her come in. After all, we do seek the comfort that the old word provides, sometimes. Food doesn’t always have to be a spectacle to be good.