Time-lapse: The St Helena Baker

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Time-lapse: The St Helena Baker


Time-Lapse is a series of short story features on the blog designed to capture segments of time, life and culture through stories told by the people of St Helena

“When the RMS asked me to do this I was really chuffed and felt quite privileged because I wasn’t expecting it.  Normally this would have been made on the RMS itself.  To do a 3-D cake of the RMS is big time – it’s really exciting.  Plus, it’s good promotion for our bakery business, good to get us ‘out there.’

“We started baking the cake on Monday afternoon and I estimate we’ve used about 12 dozen eggs in making it, including the icing.

“We’ve been using the ship’s actual fire plans to make this cake.  First I had to get Connect to reduce the size by 5% on their huge A0 scanner, and get them reprinted.

“Basically we used the plans to get the layout and shape of the actual RMS ship.  We used them to cut the cakes for the decks, the lower deck and the sun lounge and we used the plans to make the crane, masts, funnel, radar and life boats.  It’s not to scale but it’s in proportion.

“The cake is a vanilla sponge and is just over a metre long.  We’re going to place the ship on top of the slab and put a wavy icing sea around it.  I can’t play around with it too much, time is limited, we’ll see how it goes but I’d like to make it as special as possible.”

Baking and icing the RMS St Helena cake for the ship’s farewell celebrations.
Time-lapse: The St Helena Baker, Steve Yon

Adding the intricate detail to the RMS St Helena cake.
Time-lapse: The St Helena Baker, Steve Yon

“I’m painting the windows with an edible black paint.  I plotted the window placement using the plans, each set of four dots represents one porthole.  This is the A-deck, I know because it has square portholes.  B and C decks have round portholes.

“Once it’s all assembled we’re going to put on fairy lights and fountain candles.

“And then, to finish the whole thing off we have this flag bunting that Alberto made.  It’s going to look awesome once it’s done, especially with the lights on.

“We should be able to get loads of portions from this cake, enough to go around.  The whole thing is made of cake, the ship and the slab, actually I think we’ll have too much cake!  It’s supposed to be a toast cake so it’ll be cut into small pieces.”

RMS St Helena Baker

“I feel sad about the RMS leaving.  Every time I listen to the radio and hear a request for the RMS I get goose bumps just thinking that the RMS is literally going.  Terrible.

“But I mean it’s a new thing for us, we need to move along swiftly in life on the island and to build the island up in general.  For us here, the more business other businesses get, the more business we’ll get.  Everybody wins.  And we need that, we definitely need that.”

Steve is qualified in culinary art, he studied at Northlink College in Panorama, Cape Town, South Africa.  He worked as a baker on board the RMS St Helena for seven years. 


The completed RMS St Helena cake being delivered at the ship’s farewell celebrations at the wharf, Jamestown.
Time-lapse: The St Helena Baker, Steve Yon



By |2018-02-14T06:31:16+00:00February 14th, 2018|Amazing People, Food and Drink, St Helena|12 Comments


  1. Brian Isaac March 9, 2018 at 10:39 am - Reply

    Amazing, as always a pleasure to read, the RMS model takes the Cake!!!

    • WTSDN March 11, 2018 at 1:41 am - Reply

      Thanks Brian – and that’s a lotta cake to take! 🙂

  2. Steve yon February 15, 2018 at 11:05 pm - Reply

    thanks to Sharon and Darrin for the fantastic blog on the making of the RMS cake, well done.
    thanks to all for the great comments.
    The cake was a great success and we (here at the bakery) are all proud of the outcome.

    • WTSDN February 19, 2018 at 5:24 pm - Reply

      It was a pleasure Steve, thanks letting us share your story. 🙂

  3. Marilyn essex February 14, 2018 at 11:59 pm - Reply

    Great job STeve, but where did all those eggs come from? I didnt think you could get eggs on island!
    Sharon & Darrin always great reading you stuffx

    • WTSDN February 15, 2018 at 9:59 am - Reply

      Hee hee! Steve has a secret supplier who manages to fulfil all his bakery needs. 🙂

  4. Lawsonhenry February 14, 2018 at 8:20 am - Reply

    Thanks for sharing and showing the skills of a local man what talent great job steve all best for the future on st helena.

    • WTSDN February 15, 2018 at 9:58 am - Reply

      Thanks Lawson. We’re totally impressed with Steve’s skills and dedication. 🙂

  5. Billy February 14, 2018 at 8:03 am - Reply

    Another great write up and pics of a very special contribution to the farewell to the RMS. Thanks sharon and great wOrk steve and team.

    • WTSDN February 15, 2018 at 9:57 am - Reply

      Thanks Billy – there’s a lotta love for the RMS. 🙂

  6. nigel e henry February 14, 2018 at 7:21 am - Reply

    What a positive article to begin my wednesday morning. Actually, of all the photos i saw on social media, the cake being carried into place was one of those which made me go wow ! who made that ? Now I know, thank you… and top marks to mr yon for accepting the challenge and doing a grand job of it. visually impressive, how it tasted perhaps you could tell us, sharon… 🙂

    • WTSDN February 14, 2018 at 8:13 am - Reply

      Thanks Nigel! Steve did an amazing job on the cake, and gave it so much detail. Oh and the cake didn’t just look good, it tasted goooood, deliciously soft and moist. 🙂

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