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Batter Chatter: Interview with Melissa Diamond, My Cake School - Giveaway Closed

People take courses online for all sorts of things--and now, cake is one of the subjects! My Cake School is an online cake decorating school with all sorts of tutorials, message boards, and other goodies (and a new CakeSpy sponsor). Now, without knowing too much detail, I'd go so far as to say that this schooling is far funner (and more delicious) than, say, required Math credits! But how does it all work? I got in touch with owner Melissa Diamond to find out. Here's the interview:

CakeSpy Note: Melissa has also kindly offered a free 1-year membership to My Cake School to one lucky reader! Find the details at the end of the post.

CakeSpy: First things first. Who exactly are you, Melissa Diamond? And what is your relationship with cake?

Melissa Diamond: I am a wife and a mom -- and I LOVE cake decorating.  I started a home-based cake decorating business years ago so that I could work from home--- now, I love to teach!  Cake decorating is so much fun--  anyone can learn!

CS: OK. Now that we've figured that out...what exactly is My Cake School?

MD: MyCakeSchool.com is my new cake decorating website.  I have a cake Blog that is open to everyone, and then other parts of the site that are for members.  Membership is $30 for a year-- With this, you can access my cake decorating video tutorials (over 100 so far). There are Message Boards available for members to share their experiences, ask questions, and request videos!

CS: What are some of the advantages of an online cake school versus taking a course in a physical classroom or kitchen?

MD: I think that both have their advantages---but what I like the most about MyCakeSchool is that you are able to see a close-up view of the skill being demonstrated as many times as you like.  Videos are permanently posted  and available 24 hours a day--so, there are never any scheduling conflicts! Finally, it is so much more affordable! $30 may buy a 4 class course in decorating.....or a cake decorating dvd-- but with my site, you have access for a year to sooo many more videos--there is always something new to see!

CS: What is your first cake memory? 

MD: Hmmmm.. I think that it was my 5th birthday-- My mom made me a cute cake with clowns on top----the giant swirls of buttercream with the plastic clown heads!! Do you know the ones?  They still sell them!

CS: As a professional cake decorator, what are your thoughts on cupcakes?

MD: I love cupcakes!  My favorite kind are just very simply decorated with a big swirl and a cute little topper or sprinkles! Or maybe the ones injected with cream.... or dipped in ganache.....

CS: Please, tell me something that people might not know about you.

MD:  I love decorating to LOUD music!  I can't do this in my videos though!

CS: What cookbook could you simply not live without?

MD: BakeWise: The Hows and Whys of Successful Baking by Shirley Corriher.  Such a great book--she gives you the science behind baking. 

CS: Morbid curiosity time: if you could envision your last meal, what would you have for dessert? 

MD: This is so hard! I'm going with banana pudding!

But wait, there's more! You can experience the magic for yourself at MyCakeSchool.com. And one lucky winner will win a year-long subscription for free! How do you put yourself in the running? Simply leave a comment on this post saying what cookbook you simply could not live without! One winner will be chosen at random--the giveaway will close on Friday, July 31 at 12 pm PST. The winner will be announced shortly after!


UPDATE: THE WINNER! We have a winner, friends, and it is Judy R., who says "My favorite cookbook is Confetti Cakes for Kids. Also the cake decorating blogs online". Congratulations, Judy!

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Reader Comments (130)

I couldn't live without my Everyday Food magazine collection.

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I would be utterly useless without my America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook and Family Baking Book. Every recipe is simple, reliable, and tastes fantastic!

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterMolly

I would have to say Better Homes and Gardens cookbook.

It has so many recipes, no matter what you're in the mood for, and has great conversion and substitutions! Plus it's been handed down in generations, so how could you go wrong??

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

Oh how cool is this!

Hands down my Betty Crocker Cookbook, basic and simple and easy to follow. I love me some cookbooks with pretty pictures though, which is why I stalk many food blogs these days! :)

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterAlex

I actually turn to my favorite baking blogs more frequently than cookbooks, but my latest cookbook crush is Lion House Bakery. The roll recipe alone had me smitten from the instant I cracked it open.

The Gourmet Cookbook!

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle

I would just loooooove to win this prize! I love cake and cake decorating but there isnt any place to take course here, so that would be perfect!

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterCindy

The Cake Bible

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterCrystal

I use the internet most of the time, but I love The Pioneer Woman Cooks! cookbook and Picky Palate website.

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterKristin

Every year at Christmas I still use Betty Crocker's Cookie Book for the same recipes my mom always made. It wouldn't be Christmas without it.

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterLibby

Can we consider Google as a cookbook? I have recently had to go gluten-free so many of my old cookbooks don't work as well! Google always brings up what I need.

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterNikki

I can't live without my well loved copy of The Betty Crocker Cookbook. It's the first cookbook I ever bought for myself. It got me through my single years, after college.

July 26 | Unregistered Commenterdc

The Cake Bible for the art and science of baking cakes.

July 26 | Unregistered CommenterPam

Although technically not a book, I simply can not live without the internet as a source of inspiration and recipes =]

July 27 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

thanks for your sharing !!!!! welcom to http://www.caphatshop.com
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July 27 | Unregistered CommenterRed Bull Hats

I love your website, mycakeschool, also this one that I just found out through facebook.
My favorite cake book is the cake Bible it have so much information, but I also love to go to the web, specially you tube. Hope I can be the bless one to win this membership, I know It will be a great asset to me.


July 27 | Unregistered CommenterEmpy

I would have to say my good old betty crocker cookbook. I use the Internet a lot too. I find it very hard to balance my full time job, being a mom, and my love of cake decorating. Internet videos sound like a great solution!

July 27 | Unregistered CommenterJessica

My favourite cookbook would be Essential Guide to Cake Decorating!

July 27 | Unregistered CommenterBrigitteL

I have an Old Betty Crocker I love, I mean OLLLD!!

I also love my Better Homes and Gardens one, plus Pioneer Woman....the list could go on and on!

July 27 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

I have a feeling that Cake Pops is going to be my go-to book when it comes out :) Right now - I love Rachel Ray's cookbooks for dinner :)

July 27 | Unregistered CommenterCandice

Probably The Lady and Sons by, Paula Deen. My family uses many of the recipies from that book which makes lots of our dinners too!

July 27 | Unregistered CommenterMary T.

"Baking", by Dori Greenspan! Truly the best chocolate chip cookie recipe!!!!

July 27 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

I love my America's Test Kitchen Family Baking Book. It is absolutely wonderful for any type of baking I want--with no-fail recipes!

July 28 | Unregistered CommenterMindy

I do not own any cookbooks but I do have a binder with all the recipes I have gotten off the internet (mostly The Pioneer Woman recipes). Hmm, I guess I do have a cook book after all, lol.

July 28 | Unregistered CommenterClarisa

The Betty Crocker Cook book. It's got all the classics my mom made for us. One day I'd like to get her old hard cover copy from when her and my dad got married. It's got dog eared pages, a stain here and there, notes on what got two thumbs up and what to modify. She also sticks post cards that come from friends and family in as markers to frequently used recipes. That thing has more memories than a photo album!

July 28 | Unregistered CommenterAnne
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