Claudia Chindea remembers the first time she tasted real chocolate for the first time.
She was 10 years old when the communist government fell in Romania in 1989.- We lived near a furniture factory and when the trucks started rolling into the village after the revolution, the drivers brought chocolate.
It tasted so good! What I had eaten before was not real chocolate, I realized then, says Claudia Chindea.
Claudia has a creative background and tells us that she used to do ceramics and jewelry.
But in Sweden it was chocolate and pastries that caught her attention.
- I saw a picture of a cake with handmade flowers on top, which reminded me of how to make jewelry.
And I thought: 'I could do this'.
When I started studying to become a pastry chef, I had no prior knowledge, but I have had teachers who have really encouraged me.
I am so grateful for that.
Chocolate shop at Hisingen
Four years ago, Claudia got access to a small kitchen in an office building in Hisingen.
Since then, it has become the base for her great hobby – praline and ice cream making.
- Now I work nights in production at the bakery Cederleüfs & Svenheimers in Sävedalen, go home to walk our dog and then I drive here to work for a few hours.
It may sound like a lot of work, but being here is pure relaxation for me.
I don't need to go to any spa.
Last year, Claudia got a new spark with her hobby and business. Previously, she had sold her chocolates to shops and pastry shops, but found it difficult to make a profit.
Just when she was close to giving up and shutting down her business, a friend told her about REKO rings where smaller producers can sell their goods.
- I am so happy for that opportunity. The best thing is to get direct contact with your customers and thus get feedback. It makes me develop in a completely different way.
'So creative'Before the holidays, Claudia likes to take the turns a little extra.
For Halloween, for eamples, her customers have been able to buy pralines filled with raspberry truffles in the shape of severed fingers and skulls.- If you come from Transylvania in Romania like I do, it's clear that you have to create Halloween chocolates! Chocolate is so creative and I have many ideas about what shapes I would like to make, but sometimes I also have to limit myself, says Claudia Chindea with a smile.