:What on God’s earth is a Balaboosta? Well, when I discovered Balaboosta’s Bakery two years ago on Instagram, I didn’t ask, and I didn’t care, cuz anyone who stuffs a homemade chocolate chip cookie with a brownie or puts cookie dough in between two cookies and dips it in sprinkles and fudge can be anybody they want to be.
Enter Melissa Schack, a graduate of Manhattan’s Institute of Culinary Education and owner of Balaboosta’s Bakery, and the woman who has been sugar coating and stuffing my holiday tables for two years. Her freshly baked goods can be shipped anywhere, and just ask my dogs who ate the first batch she shipped to me, the mailman will deliver right to your door (or make the attempt).
Q: But, first, what is a Balaboosta? It’s a Yiddish word meaning perfect housewife, mother, homemaker, wonderful mother, cook and gracious hostess. In my house we just say, “Mom.” LOL. But, Melissa, as much as I love to cook, I don’t know if I could start a business cooking it … what gave you the urge to start baking for the masses?
“I started baking when I was four years old. My grandmother and I would make Mandel Bread in the kitchen. She showed me all the ins and outs of perfecting the Jewish cookie. The mandel bread recipe we followed was her grandmother’s. This is where my love of baking began. My grandmother always called me her little “balaboosta,” which in Yiddish refers to the perfect woman that is great at decorating hosting, gardening and yes, baking ... and what’s more she does it all without breaking a sweat.”
Q: Balaboosta’s has been in business since March of 2010, and has been dipping and stuffing Nutella brownies and funfetti concoctions since then, getting more and more creative with each passing year. But how do you dome up with these Willie Wonka delights? (Omg … a milky way stuffed anything ….)
“All of the recipes we use have stemmed from family recipes dating back to many many generations. Some of the recipes have been tweaked along the way to keep up with the ever changing trends of the baking world. Baking is an art form for me…it’s my creative outlet to express myself.”
Q: Melissa, are you quite sure a cookie dough brownie and stuffed cookie were around when your grandmother was baking?
Q: Melissa is a native New Yorker, born and raised in Long Island, where she bakes fresh daily from a private facility. I always feel like kids who work at our beloved Dairy Queen must be sick of ice cream … and they’re all skinny … lol What is your favorite treat to make … and do you still want to eat it? Lol
“My favorite treat to make is cheesecake. Cheesecake can be quite temperamental and is always a challenge … and I LOVE a challenge! I also enjoy eating cheesecake the most of anything I make. HOWEVER, it must be chilled or frozen!”
I am so torn … there are so many of Melissa’s artistic bites to call my gluttonous favorite, such as her chocolate cream pies (it’s like a baby Suzy Q, but waaay better), but for sure, my most favorite “out of the oven” creation this year is her new muffin, named Samuel, born on February 21, 2017. What do I love as much as hearing one of my favorite “make me fat’ girls just had a baby …. she is exclusively nursing …. 2 dozen extra of your funfetti blondies … they are great galactagogues! (Google that)!
So, lets toast a glass of milk to my new favorite “balaboosta” and her newest mandel bread maker, Samuel. Not sure if he can be a “balaboosta,” (A real balaboosta will not give up rank but I am sure Melissa Schack will make sure he can knead some mean dough).
Order from Melissa and check out her yumminess and get ready to drool!