Get a Slice of this Side Hustle

 

 

 

 

 

Within less than six months, Darrah DeYoung went from making her first cheesecake to selling out at the New Glasgow Farmers Market.

Darrah’s delectable cheesecakes taste like the product of a seasoned baker, proving you can be great at something even if you haven’t been working towards it your entire life.

“I wanted to make cupcakes. When I was talking to my mom, she said ‘what about cheesecake?’ And it just turned out I was good at it,” said Darrah, owner of Baked and Boujee Cheesecakes.

Though her mom has owned several businesses over the years, Darrah never thought she would follow in her footsteps, but she’s happy she has. “I always thought it was really cool that she didn’t need to have a boss. It feels good to say that I work for myself.”

She took pieces of her cheesecake around to local businesses, ultimately looking for feedback, and seeing if her idea to start a home baking side hustle was feasible.

She also gave a piece of that cheesecake to her neighbour, who then shared her rave of Darrah’s baking on the Pictou County Area Rant and Rave Facebook page.

“It was literally overnight. She posted it and the next day people were asking about orders … if you look at the calendar on my phone, it’s like nothing, nothing, nothing, January, and it’s just full,” said the entrepreneur.

Within a few days of handing out samples, Darrah created the Baked and Boujee Facebook page, and it hasn’t stopped growing since. “Every day it goes up, I can’t believe it’s going up. When I look at that number, I can’t believe that many people here are invested enough.”

“We were having a hard time making ends meet, as a lot of people are,” said Darrah. “I had been talking to a friend and she was saying how she was going to start a home baking side hustle. I was very inspired by it. She’s a mom as well, and creative … I think we both kind of felt like we had lost that part of ourselves a little bit.”

You need a permit to sell cheesecake due to the products classification as a high-risk food due to the dairy content. Baked and Boujee was reported to the Department of Health in the spring. After gaining significant momentum, Darrah was told by the department that she had to shut down.

“There was a lot of feeling like it was never going to get back to what it was. It felt like it was such a big hurdle to get over … I had become our only income, so there was that stress of thinking that maybe I should just go get a job. But I just kept at it, because it just didn’t feel good to give up,” she said.

She persisted, the Market playing a huge part in helping keep Darrah on track, providing the kitchen space she needed.

Maurice, Darrah's husband, has also been a major support throughout the entire experience. As Darrah has taken on new roles, so has he, his newest being stay at home dad. 

“It kind of even feels a little foreign to say I’m proud of myself,” she said. “This is the most I’ve ever put myself out there for anything.”

Darrah has a lot to be proud of. She created a successful and growing business out of necessity. She believed in herself enough to take risks, which is never easy. But after hearing the pride in her voice when talking about being a mom, it’s clear how much that means to her, too.

“I had my daughter in 2020. I had really bad postpartum depression and anxiety, and truly just lost myself to motherhood. I forgot my interests and hobbies, it was a really dark time for a while,” she said. “I’ve always loved baking, I’ve always loved feeding people, and this has just filled me up in a way that other things haven’t before.”

Balancing motherhood and entrepreneurship is challenging, and can be a rocky journey, but Darrah has found her footing. She’s reclaimed her creativity, ignited new passions, and gained a new sense of confidence through Baked and Boujee.

“It’s something I can say truly started from scratch,” she said.

Baked and Boujee was created out of necessity, growing into a thriving local business, here in Pictou County. With the support of a community, Darrah has realized dreams she didn’t know she had, creating a space for her to dream even bigger. Through a lot of hard work and perseverance, she has created a successful business with the capacity to support her family. In September, Darrah took on another new challenge; sitting on our board. 

“I’ve lived all over … and I always come home. I always come back to Pictou County, and for a reason,” said Darrah. “It’s easy to pick apart a small town and find the negative, but this whole experience has shown me a completely different side of Pictou County. People really go hard for people they believe in. It’s nice to be one of those people.”