After receiving a graduate certificate in baking at the California Culinary Academy, Maura moved back to her hometown and worked for many of Boston’s top chefs including Lydia Shire, Moncef Medeb, Rene Michelena, and Ana Sortun. She opened two bakeries shortly thereafter with High-Rise Bread Company. In 2001, she reunited with Sortun to develop the concept for Oleana. It was at that time that Maura fell in love with the exotic flavors and spices for which she is now known. Through extensive research, experimentation, travel and “homework,” Maura has perfected her award-winning Middle-Eastern pastries; integrating typical ingredients from the Eastern Mediterranean such as orange blossoms, tahini, and rose petals. She creates contemporary versions of traditional desserts from Turkey, Egypt and beyond.
Maura has been recognized with flawless reviews by local press and magazines and has distinguished herself as an Executive Pastry Chef and Bakery Owner. She was voted Boston’s Best Pastry Chef in 2002, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011. Sofra Bakery was also awarded the distinction of Boston’s Best Bakery in 2009 and Boston’s Best Breakfast in 2015, also by Boston Magazine.
Most recently, Maura was a nominee for the 2018 James Beard Award for Outstanding Baker.