cupcakes mail order

There are Meatloaf Cupcakes. They are Delicious. Try Them.

Thursday, October 02, 2014 Rob Samuelson

Waiting is arduous and frustrating. When you're waiting for food, it's even tougher, what with the cooking smells and the salivating and the rumbly in the tumbly. But in the case of The Meatloaf Bakery, Lincoln Park's premier meatloaf cupcake emporium, that wait is worth every second.

That's what I endured the other day as I fired up my oven in order to heat one of The Meatloaf Bakery's new frozen care packages, deliverable anywhere in the continental United States. They were kind enough to ship me a box of the original meatloaf cupcake, the Mother Loaf, which adds to the classic ground beef formula with pork and veal. The seasonings bring more flavor and atop everything is a kind of “icing” that I've never seen before: mashed potatoes.

In the course of two nights, I ate four Mother Loafs. I want more. I will get more as I head to their shop at 2454 N. Clark later this month for National Meatloaf Appreciation Day.

But in the meantime, I had a chance to speak with the head Meatloaf Baker herself, Cynthia Kallile. She says she couldn't let her passion for cooking to keep her from trying a new career path.

I love to cook, always have, it was always a hobby of mine,” she says.

I reached a point in my career after doing 25-plus years of corporate communications that my love was really cooking.”

She says she found inspiration from her family history.

The original recipe is called the Mother Loaf, and that is indeed my mother's recipe,” she says. “She used to say, 'Cynthia, I don't have a recipe, I just make it,' and I said, 'Mom, you know what you're doing,' so I took her approach to meatloaf and just replicated it.”

My mother didn't put the potatoes on top of it, that was my spin on it, but that's why we call it the Mother Loaf,” she says. “Everything else is a creation of mine.”

Since her storefront opened in December 2008, she's seen a range of Chicagoans walk in the door.

“My customers are, frankly, all over the board,” she says. “I have regulars who are young families, husbands and wives with children, I have elderly [people] who just love my product.”

There's one older couple in particular who have become some of Kallile's most valued customers.

“We know what they order,” she says. “They come in and I know exactly what they order every time because it's like a ritual.

“We have customers who are day-to-day workers, people in the downtown area, people living in the Chicagoland area,” she says. “Frankly I can't say it skews one way or the other, that it's just young people or it's just old people, it's really just people who love the creative twist that we've done with it.”

“The Chicagoland area has really embraced the business,” she says. “It's quirky, it's creative, it's really delicious.”

And now her business is growing beyond Chicago. For the last two and a half years, she has worked with a local manufacturer to mass produce her original recipes for shipment across the country.

“Now with the mail order, people all over the country” are able to enjoy the cupcakes, she says.

It's been a process to get the mail order side of the business going.

“We work side by side to get the recipe to be exactly the way they taste in my business,” she says. “They make them by hand also, but they make a lot more than we do at the store because there's more volume.

“They make them and they apply the potatoes, and they freeze them and everything stays together and it bakes up nicely,” she says.

After years of people telling her she should open other Meatloaf Bakeries across the country, the new wrinkle to her business provides her the same reach with less of the hassle.

“This is a way that people can enjoy the meatloaf goodness everywhere without [having to open] another location,” she says.

So go head to the shop or hit up the Meatloaf Bakery website to order some of Kallile's wonderful food.

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