Elle and Olle Create Delectable Goodies Fit to Nom

By: Audrey LaBenz

The sweet smells of caramel and mocha fill the air in a small Torrance apartment. Lined up on the kitchen counter are several dozen hand-crafted chocolate turtle mini cupcakes, and next to the stove a beautifully marbled mocha cheesecake waits to be sliced and enjoyed. On first glance one might assume this was the setting of a classy birthday party, but a look at the dining room table, festooned with specialty cake decorating tools and the shelves stocked to overflowing with recipe books and volumes like “The Cake Bible” tell another story.

“We have to buy another fridge,” said Danielle Snowdon, laughing. She is a lifetime baker and part-owner of Elle and Olle’s Goodies and Noms.

She and her business partner Nicolle Greer, who does creative design for their cakes as well as the company's website, have been working for the past year to build their skills – and a name for themselves – in the baking community. Their online menu is as diverse as it is mouthwatering, featuring all kinds of cookies, cupcakes, truffles, creamy pastries, cheesecakes, pies, and, of course, cake.

“The whole point of our bakery is ultimate customization,” said Greer, “Getting you whatever you want, however you want it.”

So when a law firm asked for a low-sugar book of law complete with gavel and witness stand, Snowdon and Greer gave them just that. Using materials such as fondant, which is a sugar paste used extensively on shows like Cake Boss and Ace of Cakes to get a perfectly smooth appearance, the pair can craft anything the customer desires on a cake.

“We cut and stained a block of wood for the stand, and I made the gavel out of fondant,” said Greer. They pride themselves on venturing into territory many bakeries may be hesitant to explore, making highly conceptual cake art a reality at last.

Greer elaborates:“The hard thing about going into a bakery for me has always been, ‘Is that bakery going to be able to do what I want? Will they understand? Will they think it’s too weird and ‘not up their alley?’” so they took the plunge themselves.

Elle and Olle's specialty, however, is rich, creamy cheesecakes, which they also offer in a "less tangy" flavor made with Mascarpone and Neufchatel cheeses. With flavors like peppermint bark (a Christmas favorite) and Irish coffee, who could resist?

Nelson Miranda, a seasoned cake decorator, manager and part-owner of Gloria's Cake and Candy Supply, sampled their tantalizing mocha cheesecake as well as their chocolate turtle mini-cupcakes with homemade salted caramel filling and hand-candied pecans.

"The presentation of these is really good and the pecans are a great touch," he said. "I’m really picky about buttercream, but this is definitely one of the best ones I’ve ever had.”

Cake expert: approved.

Snowdon and Greer cater monthly bridal taste testing events as well as taking private orders. They are aiming to open up a shop front for Elle and Olle's within the year that will serve coffee and ice cream in addition to their extensive menu of goodies. Their super-secret ice cream technique is still in the works, and the pair promises it will be like nothing the industry has ever seen before.

"We recently received some samples from Amoretti, one of the best flavoring companies out there," said Snowdon. "Which included some coffee flavorings that we're really looking forward to playing with."

Also in the vein of things that aren't normally done with cake, the company is looking into a mechanical design software called SolidWorks to design individual components of the cakes, as regular cake design software just didn't do the trick when three-dimensional detail is needed.

"We'll do things like peach cupcakes with 50 individual mini gum paste peaches coated with petal dust with color tone differentials," said Greer.

With their creative design ideas and lovingly formulated recipes, Elle and Olle's is in the works for locations in Lake Havasu City, Ariz., Temecula, Calif., and New York.

Continuing into the realm of the off-the-wall and delicious, the pair has a sweet future in the crafting of their irresistible Goodies and Noms.

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