Since October 2014, Patricia Bedford has operated Suga's Cakery as a home-based bakery in Pflugerville. A former electrical and computer engineer, Bedford said what began as a hobby soon transitioned into a passion project and, as of January 2018, a full-time job.
"I just took it as an opportunity—a window of opportunity to do the best thing in my life," Bedford said.
The art of baking holds deep familial roots, Bedford said. The namesake of her bakery pays homage to her paternal grandmother, Josephine, who Bedford said she affectionately referred to as "Suga." Bedford said Suga's presence in the kitchen, paired with the values and principles she instilled in her granddaughter, guided Bedford toward pursuing her dream career.
"She always taught me how to be a lady, how to sit in church in a dress and dab my eyes if I happened to cry and do my hair and wear my dresses," Bedford said, laughing. "She also taught me how to cook and bake. She was the epicenter and the hub of the family."
Following Suga's death when Bedford was a teenager, Bedford took up cooking and baking as a means of keeping the family connected. Bedford's creations soon became centerpieces of holidays, birthdays and family Sunday dinners—a small reminder, Bedford said, of Suga's presence in her family's lives.
While working as an engineer, Bedford began taking craft classes at Michael's and learning how to decorate cakes with intricate designs and colors. Following her family's guidance, she decided to turn her baking into a second job, ordering business cards and becoming a permitted Texas Cottage Law bakery.
After 2 1/2 years of running her bakery full time, Bedford is now taking the next step and establishing a permanent food trailer in downtown Pflugerville. The community support, Bedford said, has exceeded her expectations. Since starting a KickStarter campaign in early June, Bedford has raised more than $14,000, surpassing her $10,000 goal.
The trailer is set to be permanently located in front of the Old Gin Property off Pecan Street, with an anticipated opening date in August. As her business continually evolves, Bedford said she envisions a second, mobile food truck down the road, along with a potential brick-and-mortar location in Pflugerville.
But for now, Bedford said this food trailer serves as a token of gratitude to the Pflugerville residents who have welcomed her business with open arms. Whether people order an individual cupcake to go or meet up with friends for a midday treat, Bedford said she hopes it inspires the same sense of love and community that she found in Suga's kitchen years ago.
"She taught me how to move in a kitchen and what a cake should taste like—to make it moist and fresh and flavorful," Bedford said. "She gave me that foundation."