Zombie Shark - Bronze

Lagoa cake designer brings home multiple medals and awards from prestigious UK competition

The talents of Lagoa cake designer Ana Remígio were awarded at the International Salon Culinaire 2020, described as the “UK’s largest and most prestigious chef competition programme” and held in London between March 3 and 5.

The 48-year-old artist presented five cakes in four distinct classes, receiving five medals (three gold, one silver and one bronze) as well as two ‘Best in Class’ awards, a ‘Best in Show’ prize awarded to the best cake among all participants, and finally the award for ‘Professional Cake Decorator of the Year 2020’.

“I was completely taken by surprise,” Ana told the Resident after the event.

The awards are all the more impressive considering that Ana is an amateur cake designer, pursuing this passion of hers as a hobby instead of a professional career.

“This is a competition that is aimed at professional chefs and cake designers. Obviously, I’m very happy to have been awarded,” she added.

The International Salon Culinaire was judged by 70 of the UK’s most prestigious industry chefs from The Craft Guild of Chefs, The Association of Pastry Chefs, The British Culinary Federation and The Royal Academy of Culinary Arts.

Ana Remígio participated in the category of Sugarcraft (Cake Design).

Among her creations were a tree filled with owls (made out of cupcakes), several dragons and a terrifying shark.

“I’ve always been a huge fan of fantasy. I particularly like creating reptiles, as they allow me to use different techniques and highlight details that aren’t possible if I’m designing humans or other simpler themes,” she said.

Inspiration, she told us, comes to her in many forms.

“It comes when I’m searching the internet for ideas, looking at photos or simply from my own brain,” Ana said, explaining that she started decorating cakes for fun when the first cupcakes started arriving in Portugal.

Eventually a friend of hers asked her to make a cake for her son, which kick-started her passion and made her realise she had developed a knack for decorating.

“I didn’t take any classes or courses. Like so many people these days, I watched many videos on YouTube. The hardest part many times is discovering how to structure the cake and keep it sturdy,” Ana told the Resident.

But Ana doesn’t want her cakes to just be a treat for the eyes – making them delicious is just as important.

While most cake designers in Portugal use “pão de ló” (a Portuguese sponge cake) as their base for the cake, Ana prefers more flavourful and moist alternatives such as red velvet, chocolate or fruit cakes.

With these latest accolades under her belt, Ana is already eyeing Cake International, described as “the world’s greatest cake show”, which will be held in Birmingham in November.

“I’m going to keep participating in competition and continue learning. I really love doing this.”

By MICHAEL BRUXO
michael.bruxo@algarveresident.com

Ana Remígio also won the Professional Cake Decorator of the Year 2020 award
Pink – Gold and Blue Dragon – Silver
Zombie Shark – Bronze