Quashiema, nicknamed Q by friends and family, is originally from Paterson and learned about CFBNJ’s Food Service Training Academy (FSTA) when her business was featured on the Paterson community business page.
“I saw the Community FoodBank of New Jersey on there, too, and I got to read about the program,” she recalled.
Since 2005, she has owned and operated her own baking company, Q’s Quality Cakes. She specializes in cheesecake and red velvet cake but also makes a variety of tasty treats for baby showers, birthday parties, and other local events.
“I started baking when I was a kid and my aunt bought me the Easy Bake Oven,” she remembered. “Ever since then, I’ve been wanting to bake or cook or do anything to get my hands in the kitchen.”
Naturally, Q is most excited for the baking portion of the FSTA program. Though she’s a master baker already, with eighteen years in the business, she always hopes to discover new things about her craft.
When asked what, specifically, she wants to learn that she doesn’t already know, she answered: “A whole lot of things.” New techniques and ways to put a creative spin on her work were at the top of her list.
In addition to baking, Q loves to cook, too, and most enjoys making lasagna. For her, FSTA is a chance to become more experienced in the kitchen, overall.
“Once I receive my FSTA certificate, I’m hoping to work for a restaurant or maybe a hotel,” she said. “I want to get more into the hospitality of cooking.”
When asked what she loves about the program, Q told us: “I’m being educated on so many levels.”