We had the good fortune of connecting with Jennifer Harding Hill and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jennifer, we’d love for you to start things off by telling us something about your industry that we and others not in the industry might be unaware of?
The most important thing about the baking industry that outsiders should know is when they purchase services from “the cheap cake lady” they are harming not only their baker but the entire industry. Countless clients come to me saying they used to have a really cheap cake lady they loved but they can’t find her anymore. They can’t find her because she is out of business. And if she isn’t out of business yet she will be. Small bakeries can’t compete with box store bakeries and they shouldn’t. Need a cheap cake? Go the grocery. If you are supporting a cheap cake baker chances are good you aren’t giving her time or her skills the value they deserve. You are facilitating the idea that the baking community doesn’t deserve to earn a living wage. And what kind of monster supports that?!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I make art using sugar as my medium. There are so many edible products out there that the sky is the limit on what I can create. I am confident I can make anything and have been able to showcase that through my business. I’m naive enough to believe it and somehow find the patience to keep going until I achieve something great. Living with severe ADD is no joke but it works in my favor when I need to hyperfocus, so it’s really kind of a superpower. Every project is a brand new challenge and each one uniquely difficult. Sometimes more difficult than I ever imagined! But creating is what I am meant to do, and so I keep going. Whether you need an object replicated or have a dream you aren’t even sure about, I can take it from concept to reality and it will taste amazing. My brand tells you everything you need to know about me and my business. The word GŪD means God and good in Swedish and I recently discovered that gud translates to jaggery in Hindi, which is unredined sugar. While as far as I know I am not Swedish or Hindu, I do believe we are all connected and I want everything I do to be Godly, inherently good and of course, sweet.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Come visit the Houston area! I would love to take all my people to Mi Tienda for some delicious food and a huge selection of mexican products. I always leave with a few roasted chickens for my weekly meal prep. The soup is amazing, with a side of fruits sprinkled in extra Tahine and a pineapple cucumber drink hand dipped from the bar is pure heaven. In fact, I’m heading there now. And then on my way to Galveston. Take the biggest board you can find or rent one at Southern Spear at 61st & seawall, because our waves are choppy and small but hey, they’re still waves! Open the van doors wide when you take a break and sit back to enjoy the people watching on the seawall. Walk down to Rita’s and get a Florida orange ice at least twice. Perfect day!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I have two friends, both entrepenuers, that felt so strongly the world needed my offerings so much that they pushed and they pushed until I fell out of the nest. Kara Bramblett owns Birdies Bubble in Kingwood, Texas making the coolest personalized merchandise in all the land! She insisted that I bring the GŪD macarons to a local market. Our friend Tamara Lexow who sells Mary Kay supported her opinion and came through with word of mouth advertising by using her giant platform she has built over the years as a writer and lover of people. The market was a crazy big success and I never looked back. GŪD Sugar hit the ground running and I’m grateful.
Jennifer Harding Hill