August 15, 2017 (Abbotsford, B.C.) – “East meets sweet” with a new partnership between Tracy Dueck, founder of Tracycakes Bakery Cafe and celebrity chef Vikram Vij to deliver a custom
Tracycakes’ dessert now available exclusively at My Shanti by Vikram Vij in South Surrey.
After a chance meeting at a business event in Langley, Dueck pitched Vij on a South Asian inspired dessert that would blend Tracycakes’ signature decadent cakes with the flavours of India for a unique dessert creation. That creation became a custom cake called The Sultan’s Jewel, an ultra-moist chocolate cake infused with a silky coconut and cardamon infused custard, and crowned with a rich dark chocolate cinnamon ganache and an exotically-spiced almond-cocoa masala crumble.
“We’re pleased to add Tracycakes’ delicious new cake to our dessert menu,” said Chef Vij. “Tracy has done a wonderful job of blending traditional Indian flavours into a rich chocolate dessert for a tempting finale to My Shanti’s refined Indian fare.”
“It’s been a dream of mine to collaborate with Vikram. As a successful restauranteur, author and TV personality, he is a true Canadian culinary icon, so to be able to develop a cake especially for one of his restaurants is an incredible honour,” said Dueck.
ABOUT CHEF VIKRAM VIJ
Chef Vikram Vij is an award-winning Indian-born Canadian chef, cookbook author, and television personality. He is co-owner of the Indian cuisine restaurants Vij’s and Rangoli in Vancouver and My Shanti by Vikram Vij in South Surrey, BC. Over the past 20-plus years, Vij’s Restaurant has become renowned in Vancouver, across Canada and globally as one of the finest Indian dining experiences in the world. He also has a successful line of frozen packaged Indian meals called Vij’s At Homewhich is now available in hundreds of major grocery retailers across Canada. Vij was a guest judge on Top Chef Canada three years in a row and was also a judge on Chopped Canada, Recipe to Riches and Dragon’s Den. He is also the recipient of many awards including “Chef of the Year” from Vancouver Magazine’s prestigious Restaurant Awards (2015). In 2014, My Shanti by Vikram Vij was named “Best New Restaurant” by the Globe and Mail and in 2017 the restaurant was named “Best Restaurant in Surrey, Delta, White Rock and Langley” in the 2017 Georgia Straight Golden Plate Awards. For more information, visit vijs.ca.
ABOUT TRACYCAKES BAKERY CAFE
Founded by Tracy Dueck in 2006, Tracycakes Bakery Cafe is a chic and cozy cafe that specializes in more than 40 varieties of signature cupcakes, high teas and a scrumptious selection of homemade foods. With two locations in Langley’s historic Murrayville and Downtown Abbotsford, both cafes are a charming place to connect with friends, family and colleagues over breakfast or lunch, tea or coffee, and most importantly, a sweet treat Tracycakes is the recipient of numerous awards including the Business Excellence Award from the South Surrey White Rock Chamber of Commerce and was named Canada’s Best Retro-Delicious Cupcake Bakery by the National Post newspaper. At Tracycakes, every bite is an occasion!
Celebrity Chef Vikram Vij and Tracy Dueck, owner of Tracycakes Bakery Cafe at My Shanti in South Surrey.
Chef Vij plates Tracycakes’ The Sultan Jewel cake.
Christmas conjures up all kinds of nostalgic memories filled with traditions, expectations, wonders and delights. Each year as the frenzy of activities start to take over our calendars, we begin excited with what the season holds for us. We trim branches, deck the halls, trek out to the wilderness or to a tree farm and cut down our tree with coffees in hand while we take photos with our iPhones and post immediately to the world. We bake, and take more photos to post and we buy, (and in January wonder why) we cook, and take more photos to show how we are keeping it all together as we try to make the season bright.
So, what is this season we call Christmas all about anyways?
For me, as a child who grew up in a way-less-than traditional household (that is for another time to share) I can only say my Mom made this time of year very special for all her children. We may not have been sure about the 364 other days of the year, but we knew we would be surprised and delighted on Christmas morning.
The stockings were hung (I don’t think we ever had a chimney) and filled and that is still a tradition I carry on for my family to this day. The turkey was baked and though her trimmings may not have been “magazine worthy”, they were simple and good (with the exception the weird fruit salad she made with fruit cocktail and miracle whip) (my sisters may disagree).
This year is a different year for us.
This may be my first year without my Momma.
What matters to me is the gathering of family, no matter what that looks like.
What matters is the joy of knowing this time is precious.
What matters is loving one another in spite of our differences and idiosyncrasies (we all have them).
What matters is respect and appreciation.
What matters is the reason for this season anyways.
It is for me that Jesus came as a babe as a gift from God so that we may have eternal life.
I know this — my Mom may have Christmas in heaven and I am pretty sure there will be stockings, stuffing, and the sound of angels singing and there will be JOY.
This I know for sure.
So, my wish for each of you is that you step back for the hustle and bustle, and breathe deep of the ones you call family this year.
This is what matters most.
Merry Christmas one and all from my home to yours~
The year, 1981.
The town (oddly Aldergrove, BC)
The reason- a move from California placed us at the right place at the right time for the right reason.
I met Ray in 1981 in high school after moving here from Newark, California.
I came from Football, cheerleaders, pep rallies, school cafeterias that rocked and school dances that were made for young love and ended up in a place called Aldergrove, BC.
I can say I was unimpressed.
I can say I was mad about having to move in the Junior Year of High school (Canadians say 11th grade)
(I say, tennis shoes, you say runners)
Anyways I digress.
I met Ray at school as he drove up in his Volkswagen Bug and he was the best friend I could have ever wanted.
I called him to pick me up for school. I called him when my boyfriend (at the time) broke up with me.
That was a life changing moment.
I always thought to myself…”someone should marry Ray.”
He would be a great husband but I never realized that “someone” would be me until some time later…
Fast forward to 1984 and we were married at the age of 19 (lived on my own since I was 17)
I can say I have never looked back.
I have loved being Ray’s wife and our journey is now heading towards the 30th anniversary of a marriage that was in perfect timing.
You see, at times in life, we cannot see how things will play out.
How can a young girl getting married to the the perfect fit for her at a young age be the perfect ending?
Together, they had three great children and raised them to believe in them selves.
We taught them~
Be kind (mostly)
Be honest. Always.
Be empathetic as life sometimes needs us to understand.
Be your self.
See your future and go for it.
Remember your roots.
Forge your own frontier.
Grow together as a couple (Ray and I always went away often alone)
And along the way we learned that investments in “portfolio’s” can look a lot like investing in lives…
Our investments have given us so much return and we value them (and one another) more than I can express.
So Ray, you’re still the one…
What is your story about love?
I would love to hear it!
See our contest we are running on our Facebook page here!
How to enter:
1) Like ChocolaTas and Tracycakes Bakery Cafe on Facebook!
2) Like & share the photo!
3) Comment and tell us your love story!
Do you follow us on Instagram? Follow us on Instagram for a extra entry in our contest!
Winner will be announced on February 10/2014
Why not come in for a uplifting high tea? Scrumptious finger sandwiches, mini dainties and mouth watering fresh baked scones served with a steaming pot of Earl Grey tea is the perfect cure for the rainy day blues.
Book your high tea reservation today by calling our Abbotsford or Murrayville location and make sure to bring in the coupon below, either by printing it or showing it on your smart phone. Until January 31, 2014.
The year 2013 will be one of the most “moving” years noted in my life to date.
It started when I had just closed the Tracycakes Bakery Café location in White Rock late December 2012. Closing a café seems like a death, finality, and ending of some dream you had for your vision and future. I struggled with it and finally landed in relief that the stress of trying to run a successful business while little pesky ants run around your café is not worth the sleepless nights.
It was a good business decision, and I woke up in January with a new set of eyes searching the horizon for what I may do with the whole brand new Year in front of me.
A bakery came up for sale just behind us in Abbotsford, and I began to having “visions of sugar plums danced in my head.”
The goal- to centralize baking and save labor (and bake lots in a HUGE oven).
Thrifty Foods became a goal to work towards getting Tracycakes Bakery Café Ltd into Vancouver at the high end locations.
During this time, Tracycakes Bakery café in Fort Langley was set to be re-developed and the location would be torn down to re-build a new one in 2015. WE had to find another location to call home in the meantime. We found Murrayville and began the process of signing the lease.
Closing a location in Fort Langley, while buying a Bakery in Abbotsford (and doing lease hold improvements in the bakery) while opening in Murrayville(and doing leasehold improvements there), WHILE your daughter, who is your Chief Operations Officer is leaving on Maternity to have her first baby while your kitchen manager from Fort Langley, who is also your daughter is training how to become COO may not have been my “best strategy” as the CEO.
Looking back I cannot believe I am here today writing anything at all. My tenacity has driven me through and my determination has been my downfall of the year. Things are changing and I need to quickly learn (about six months ago) to adapt and change with it and not rely on the auto correct that I have learned to rely on.
I know I was the answer to the previous owners prayers by buying the Old Towne Bakery (now Tracycakes Bakery) and I know that I have been blessed with a new baby granddaughter named Sadie Rae, and I know that my youngest daughter, Jessica who just got engaged this summer in the midst of the above stated chaos will get married to the man of her dreams, Nick and that my daughter Melissa ,(who just moved to Kamloops )will be happy there with her husband, Mika (he just became a full time firefighter in Kamloops) and that my grandsons, Jonah and Fox love me to bits and my daughter in law , Randi has been the best daughter in law for me and that my son, Dan is a great man, husband, father and friend.
My newest grand baby, Sadie Rae
My son Daniel and his wife Randi and their two boys, Jonah and Fox
Melissa and her husband Mika with their daughter Sadie
Jessica and her fiance Nick
My grandkids and I
Helping my daughter move
Jonah, Fox and Nana time
I know that my Mother in law, who passed away very quickly this October, is in heaven and she is at peace and running through the flowers and loving being with Dad, Trevor and Jesus. I know that losing her was harder than I would have ever imagined and that I learned so much that final week with her in the hospital and I would not trade one minute but to say, I would have done more if I only had known that time was so short. Lesson learned.
In school you get the lesson, and then you take the test. In life you take the test, and learn the lesson.
At this point in the year, it is too late to look back and think “I could have done that differently” and I will take the lessons which have brought me staring straight in a full length mirror and reflected back to me the person standing there is basically good at heart and loves her family with every inch of her body and soul. She realized that the underlying (deep need) for her buying the bakery was her honest and mislead need for status. A huge eye-opening moment occurred when I saw “the good, the bad and the ugly” side of Tracy which would have been the end of it, except I learned that about myself and I can use it to make “me” a better person.
Ephesians 4:31 “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires;”
I had acquired Thrifty Foods to sell babycakes to but decided against it as we were not set up to track and bake all those cupcakes needed for such a big company.
I have loved holding my new baby granddaughter who smiles constantly-just like her Mama did when she was a baby. I have loved sitting on the ground with Fox my grandson cuddled on my lap while we play cars. I have loved spending time with Jonah at the Aquarium and look forward to more of that. I have been fortunate to have a husband who loves me- all of me- and who I can lean on. I have lots of friends who pray for me and the little company who “could”. I know you each one. I have an extended family to love and who love me. I have children who are strong and confident in life and love. I have a Mom who supports me in every way possible. I have one thousand gifts and more that is not “wrap able” but are tangible, hold on with both hands and an open heart kind of gift.
“If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?”
I ask myself this many times and if the answer is yes, than that is good. If the answer is no too many days in a row, I need to change something.
For today, I will put on my apron and get baking because that is what I really love to do. Bake and give move in the form of a loaf of bread or a cupcake.
Merry Christmas everyone.
May you feel Peace and be surrounded by LOVE this Christmas and in 2014.
For nearly thirty years, I had hoped my mother in-law would love and embrace me. I wished she would tell me I was a good wife to her son and a good mother to her grandchildren. I wanted to hear her tell me what a good job I was doing as a stay-at-home mom.
We’ve all heard the mother-in-law stories. Well, my mother-in-law was one of those mothers-in-law.
She could be negative and harsh at times. Over the years, there were times when her words stung and brought tears to my eyes. Her somewhat abrasive nature was matched by a tender side that only some got to see.
These past few years, our family watched as my mother-in-law struggled with her health and became more and more frail. Last week, she fell and broke her hip.
My husband and son, along with my brother-in-law and nephew, were out of town hunting for 10 days.Since it was a long-planned trip, and we didn’t want to ask them to come home unless it was necessary. So my sister-in-law and I stepped in to make sure Mom was taken care of each and every day. Surprisingly, she didn’t seem to mind this. In fact, she had given her sons her blessing to keep hunting—which, if you knew her, was actually quite profound and a gift.
As we waited for Mom’s surgery, we helped her eat, combed her hair, and washed her face. When surgery day came, we had to face some hard realities concerning the risks. After surgery, it took all day for her to come out of recovery—and that’s when our concern started to grow. Mom’s heart rate was irregular, so they transferred her to the CCU.
For six days, my sister-in-law and I kept her company, brought flowers, food, and visitors and watched from a distance as Mom interacted with all of us, and with the nursing staff (who were phenomenal!).
Instead of being one to complain, Mom was just so gracious and thankful—and she made us laugh out loud once, when she asked a nurse, “Is that guy a Mexican?” (Those of you who don’t know my mother in law won’t get it, but those who did will be laughing alongside us. I wanted to ask her, “Are you German?!”)
In her typical way, Mom picked through her pills and took out the ones she did not “like.” Yet, all the while, she graciously understood she needed the daughters’ help. And she let us help.
In those six days, I learned how to brush dentures and put them back in, and how to comb hair and feed soup to someone lying on her side. I learned how to rub lotion on swollen knees, and massage gnarled, worn out feet that have walked many miles.
There was a strange phenomenon that happened during those days. My mother-in-law asked for a kiss each time I visited—and told me she need four hugs and four kisses a day. After anyone did anything for her, she said, “Thank you.”
She spoke of Dad and how much she missed him, and she cried each time she did so. She asked the nurses whether they had seen him during his own hospital stay two years ago. She spoke of the loss of her grandson Trevor.
She recalled all her visitors and her conversations with each one. She was very aware and coherent. She told me she prayed for each of us, by name, each day, and gave thanks before her meals.
But, for me, the clincher was that each time I was there, she would ask the nurses, “Do you know the restaurant Tracycakes? Have you been there?” And then she would say, “This is my daughter-in-law. She owns it.”
For the first time, perhaps ever, I realized Mom was proud of me! By the time the week was done, she had introduced me countless times as her daughter-in-law who owns Tracycakes. And although I was getting somewhat embarrassed, I will cherish that always.
In her last days, she made sure I knew that she loved me.
Thank you, Mom, for that gift. As you entered heaven, I’m sure there was a great deal of noise as Dad greeted you with open arms and maybe even a dance. You will be missed.
“So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.”
Four years ago and young girl walked into Tracycakes Bakery Cafe and asked if we were hiring.
A resume was dropped off and we saw this as an opportunity to leave fingerprints on a staff that would in turn leave her fingerprints on the community of Abbotsford, one person at a time!
We hired Olivia four years ago. She was just a young impressionable gal who was aiming to please and please she did!
She was an employee who embraced the culture before we even knew we had one. She was a goal setter, a people pleaser, a show up on time and get- to- work employee which is rare in this economy and industry. She was a gem and we knew it!
As an employer, I could ask her to complete tasks from cleaning the bathrooms, to baking our lovely cupcakes, to greeting guests with the most soft greeting, to dishes and anything in between and she would gladly reply, “Of course!”
An “Olivia” not every employer gets to have the fortune of employing, yet we were blessed to have her for four years.
She recently moved on as some do, but we will never , never have a wonderful you.
Thanks Olivia for your care, consideration, enthusiasm, joy, diligence, and care to detail, love of others, contagious concern, and drive to be all you can be.
You have left your mark at Tracycakes Bakery Café and your apron cannot be filled~ ever.
We will hang it in honor of You and your fingerprints left at Tracycakes Bakery Café.
Being one of four fortunate business women who were chosen to be a part of the Women President’s Organizations annual conference was nothing short of extraordinary.
Marsha Firestone graciously allowed four Gro Your Biz women in business to join this ever growing and ever incredible conference held this year in Dallas Texas.
I quickly learned that taking my business to the next level while fueling economic growth would take some serious “two –step” on my part as I have lots to learn!
Lynda Applegate gave us an insight to how she linked the know-how with the people with the resources to create business models that can transform how we work, play and learn.
One of the things she said that struck home with me was , “ Never lose your gut instinct” which resounded with me as I often listen to that and what impacted me most is our ability to use this “instinct” which is so very different from our male counterparts.
“The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” Alan Keys
When I think about the future and all the potential of not only myself but all women (and yes, even some men!) I am awestruck and enthusiastically want to take a two- step bogie to get to where I believe I can go!
The photo, above depicts the relentless pursuit of opportunity without regard for resources currently controlled and this is how I see myself today courageously embarking on growing my business with the support of the Gro Your Biz members and also the WPO Members.
Community gives me the courage to do so.
I attended a session titled Heart, Head and Hand: The science of persuasive communication and learned that I already do much of what was taught naturally as I share my “story” and have been known to be a “good listener”. This session just reaffirmed what I already do naturally but was re-framed for me in a way of “offering a little gift of myself to my listener” and looking for the “gift” they would give me in communication.
By speaking from the heart, we connect in a real and meaningful way to our listener, whether that is a client, an employee, our friend or family member. It connects them to me.
Our Keynote address speaker, Marshall Goldsmith spoke on “What got you here won’t get you there” and shared effective strategies on how to develop myself to the next level and taught me to understand why the challenges that come with increased success are crucial to the success of my company. Some take home thoughts would be:
Find REAL Meaning.
Be fully engaged
Build positive relationships
Set clear goals
Make progress toward goal achievement
Our real values are what we do, not what we say.
The real clincher was the thought of what my 95 year old self would say to me today?
Would “she” give me personal advice or professional advice? Most likely both, and today I will set my course and work backwards from the 95 year old me and listen to what ”she” would say.
In the evening, there is a reception honoring the 50 fastest growing women owned/led companies and we arrive to a room full of 800 formally dressed women who are honoring the 50 women who have accomplished that and it is nothing short of awe-inspiring.
My heart was stirred to keep “two-stepping” my way towards my business goals.
Some “Lessons I learned along the way” from Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole can be summed up in this quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson : “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
Some insights include what she learned from her father who said, “Doing for others is just the rent you pay for time on this earth.”As I ponder these quotes, “everyone has a right to SOAR” and also, “Remember to lift others as you climb!” I can learn that while I am busy setting goals and achieving them I need to be mindful of those I need to take along with me on the climb. It takes a team to do what I do, and it is not all about me.
I found this seminar to be the most inspiring as I was reminded of what we, as woman can do in the future and have done in the past, such as the Women’s Rights and Anti Slavery Activist, Sojourner Truth who changed a nation by ensuring women’s rights to vote and fought for equality for all. The story goes something like this:
“The tumult subsided at once, and every eye was fixed on this almost Amazon form, which stood nearly six feet high, head erect, and eyes piercing the upper air like one in a dream. At her first word there was a profound hush. She spoke in deep tones, which, though not loud, reached every ear in the house, and away through the throng at the doors and windows and she ended with this statement that echoes throughout the course of history, ““Den dat little man in back dar, he say women can’t have as much rights as men, ’cause Christ wan’t a woman! Whar did your Christ come from?” Rolling thunder couldn’t have stilled that crowd, as did those deep, wonderful tones, as she stood there with out-stretched arms and eyes of fire. Raising her voice still louder, she repeated, “Whar did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothin’ to do wid Him.”
Harriet Tubman who was an American bondwoman who escaped from slavery in the South to become a leading abolitionist before the American Civil War. She led hundreds to freedom in the North as the most famous “conductor” on the Underground Railroad, an elaborate secret network of safe houses organized for that purpose.
Her words spoke to me “I was the conductor of the Underground Railroad for eight years, and I can say what most conductors can’t say; I never ran my train off the track and I never lost a passenger.”– Harriet Tubman
These kinds of women are the kind that shows up each and every year at the WPO annual conferences and each one has a story to tell. Each women present has gone where no “woman” has gone before and left a trail for us to follow. Each woman shares from her heart her successes and failures and as we do so we free ourselves as women to be who we are. I listened to one woman share her struggles at home and with tears in her eyes speak of leaving her three teenage children with her husband and how she could only come to one day of the seminar as the family structure required so much of her and how she wondered if she was appreciated. I encouraged her and told her that indeed she was and one day, they would say “Thanks Mom”. I listened to some women share their current struggles and how the finances were a going concern for the business. I listened to laughter and shared many times with these amazing women who shared from the heart. I felt pain for one woman in particular who had just gone through a horrendous event and I understood what it meant to be a woman. I learned that women are capable and we have the propensity to care for one another in a way that men cannot and that is what makes us special and unique in business and we should not try to be like men, but fully embrace all we are and use our gifts to make this world better, one women, one moment, one meeting at a time and that is what I learned as I journeyed along the way doing the two step in Texas with women in the WPO.
One day you’re just but a girl and then a baby is placed in your arms and you become a mother.
Do you recall that moment when your wee one was placed in your arms?
I do, except mine was anything but tiny.
Weighing in at 9lbs 10 oz and 23 ½” long, a boy was placed in my arms and my life was forever changed.
My son Daniel and I
Two years later, another gift—a girl this time, weighing less (thankfully) and with a smile that still lights
up the world.
My daughter Melissa and I
Five more years passed and another blessing, a girl who—at 9 lbs. 11 oz., beating her brother’s record—
wanted to be sure I knew she had arrived.
My daughter Jessica and I
During the years of being a mom I learned that you love from the depth of your soul, no matter what.
I learned that children are the best teachers and that God uses them in our lives to help us to become
I have wonderful memories of being a soccer mom, a basketball mom, a ballerina mom (short-lived,) a
skating mom, a motocross mom, a school mom, a mom to all their friends, the cookie mom, the come-
on-over-for-dinner (again) mom, the come-and-live-at-our-house mom, the wedding planner mom, and
the Sunday dinner (every week) mom.
I wouldn’t change a single moment—with the exception of letting go of the little things and embracing
more spontaneous moments like wrestling, laughing until your gut hurts, tousling more hair, and letting
the house get dirty (well, maybe just a little).
I would tell myself that life goes by quickly, so embrace each moment. And I’d make sure I let my kids
see my eyes light up each time they walked in the door.
For Mother’s Day, why not take the time to embrace your kids, since they make us exactly who we are-
Make a reservation at Tracycakes Bakery Cafe and spend time with the ones who helped make you who
you are—or order High Tea to go! (I see a picnic in your future!)
From a girl to a mom and now to a nana…the next chapter has begun!
Spring is in the air! Aside from blooming flowers and the sun starting to peek out, spring also means a start to our wedding season! Tracycakes can help to make your wedding extra sweet with our signature cupcakes. Customize your cupcake tier topped with a cutting cake or your individually boxed cupcake wedding favours to suit your colour theme and flavour preferences. We LOVE weddings and want to be a part of yours!
Are you looking for somewhere extra elegant to host a bridal shower? We would love to be a part of your next event! Leave the hard work to us, just show up and sit back and spoil that bride while we take care of everything else!
Here are some photos of some wedding cupcakes we have done recently!
A charming country inspired wedding
Gorgeous green and white colour theme
Could this cake topper get any cuter?
Here is another way to display your wedding cupcakes and cake