Old Town bakery serves up sweets

CHICAGO This is a story of a lifelong passion becoming a reality.

Lisa Alexander spent years as a nurse, always dabbling in the kitchen. After years of caring for patients, Alexander took the leap into the bakery business a few months ago where she now cares for her mother's recipes, aided by lots of butter, sugar and flour.

You have to love what you do to want to be on your feet all day but Lisa Alexander is used to that. After years of being a nurse, she decided to pursue her passion, recently opening the Twisted Sister Bakery in a brick walk-up in Old Town.

"It was a great stress reliever over the years, actually, while I was nursing. My style of baking is a very homey type of baking. Things that my mom made when I was young. Things that made me feel good. Things that I loved to eat as a kid," said Alexander.

At the Twisted Sister Bakery, one finds an assortment of cupcakes and different kinds of cakes coated in butter cream, plus a wide assortment of cookies, including tea clouds, thumbprints and berry whites; chocolate chocolate chip, snickerdoodles, molasses, oatmeal raisin and peanut butter cookies are also available every day.

"I took a lot of her recipes, tweaked them over the years until they got to a place where I really felt good with them," said Alexander.

Feeling good isn't too difficult, after you've dug into a banana cream tart that's rimmed with a chocolate crust, or a fruity cherry cheesecake and a deep, intense chocolate espresso version.

One of Alexander's signature items is really rather simple: a corny lime cookie, which is both sweet and savory. It begins with a cornmeal base, then is sweetened with a lime-infused sugar glaze.

"Our goal was to create baked goods that were comfort food," explained Alexander.

The bakery also does birthday and wedding cakes. And a small but important detail: employees smartly package cookies and cupcakes so that the baked goods don't get damaged or crushed in transit.

Twisted Sister Bakery
1543 N. Wells St.

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