Meet the Baker: Michael Kachadoorian
Joining the team this spring as The Famous Cafe opened for daytime service is Michael Kachadoorian, author of “Baking Naturally” and regular baking guest on WWLP’s Mass Appeal. In 2015, Kachadoorian self-published his first cookbook “Baking Naturally” and developed his website bakingnaturally.com. Although he spent the last 27 years of his career as a healthcare marketing professional, Mike went back to his “roots” and found baking as an outlet for his creativity. He is originally from Worcester where his family owned a successful butcher shop for over 50 years, started by his great-grandfather and later owned by his grandfather and great uncle. Kachadoorian found himself working at the shop from age 11 until about 21 years old. “We had to take care of customers and provide the best products and the absolute best customer service, and I find myself back to that type of sensibility,” he said. In 2021, Mike decided to take his baking career full time and we’re delighted to have him sharing his talent at GCA. Below he answers a few questions about his baking style and what baking means for him.
How would you describe your “Baking Naturally” style and what items at The Famous Cafe best represent it?
Baking Naturally is rooted by two main principles. One is to use the best ingredients that are all-natural and free from chemicals so that we minimize harmful products introduced to our bodies. And two… I focus on simple but delicious baked goods that embody a sense of satisfaction that we all get from the foods we eat. We have all had that moment when we take a bite of food and pause for a moment because it was so satisfying, it makes us happy. I want people to enjoy good food again. Right now, the Famous cornbread and mixed berry crumb cakes totally embody that style. Someone told me the crumb cake was “sublime,” and it made them, and me, smile. What’s better than that?
When or how did you know you wanted to share your baking with others?
I’ve been working on Baking Naturally for years, so I’d say around 7 years ago or so is when I thought about sharing my baking with others. I’ve been told many times I should open a bakery, and now working at The Famous Cafe, it gives me the outlet I’ve desired. It’s time and I couldn’t be happier.
Why is baking your creative outlet?
For me it’s relaxing. I don’t fuss about it. I focus on taste and it’s stimulating to me to figure out how I can ramp up the flavor, or give something a different flavor profile than what one expects. I challenge myself to add subtly to my baked goods that give them a nuanced flavor that makes it more appealing. I’m endlessly creative and I have a fascination on how things work. For example I am completely fascinated by airplanes, how they work, what they are made from, how they are maintained, how the parts operate and what functions they have, how comfortable the cabin is, and when something goes wrong, why did it go wrong and how did they fix it. I have that same fascination with baking and cooking – I want to know why and how about everything and with baking I get to “work on it” daily, which I don’t get to do with airplanes!