Off the Eatin’ Path: Kim’s Confections are retro-Inspired treats for the Modern Age

supple and sweet with a nod to the past

Pastel aprons that match the shoes. Bright orange blenders, lime green refrigerators. Calf-length pleated skirts as you vacuum this contemporary home. Wearing a suit just to go to the store. White picket fences. Throwing shrimp and bananas in a Jello mold. Post-war, pre-Beatles America invokes images of life with pure possibilities. Mostly accomplished in sweeping Technicolor through bulky televisions on stilts equipped with a stereo, full bar, and ashtrays.

There is nothing wrong with that. In fact, these days, we seem to yearn for that blissful time when we thought the Moon was host to atomic astro beasts and doctors endorsed cigarettes.

While at the same time that era of crew cut ideas prompted the “hippie” movement, which eventually evolved into punk and now you can enjoy Black Sabbath as you shop at Walmart.

The best part is, each era, each movement has its own merit. So, what if I were to say that the criterions implemented by Good Housekeeping mixed with that of Maximum Rock & Roll magazine fluxed into a sweet baked treat that’s readily available here in Tucson?

Because it totally is.

Kim's Confections

Vanilla Bean and Vanilla Rose Marshmallows (Photo by Mark Whittaker)

gettin’ her hands in the dough early on

Kim’s Confections is the sugar-dusted yum child of Kim Fimbers, a Tucson-based baker that moved here from Vallejo, California when she was five. Her father is a native Tucsonan and just wanted to be back with his Sonoran-raised and rooted family and knew that his family would want to as well.

“My mother is half Irish, half Japanese and my dad is Mexican, so there were a lot of influences as far as my upbringing and cooking was concerned,” said Fimbers.

Her mother, in fact, was the one that initially lit the baking fire for Kim. She had her little hands in every holiday dessert but around her teen years, she said she just “kind of fell out of it” and moved on to whatever teens do. It was an aunt that reignited that baking fire, this time with a gift.

Kim's Confections

Kim Fimbers of Kim’s Confections (Photo by Mark Whittaker)

“She got me my first stand mixer,” said Fimbers. “It was bright yellow and super vintagey looking. I kind of took that as a sign and just started to bake all the time.”

In fact, Kim graduated from the Pima culinary program and immediately started working in busy restaurants such as Vero Amore, Augustin Kitchen, and Hacienda del Sol Guest Ranch Resort as a baker and pastry chef. One such gig came and went too quickly, a Louisiana-themed concept in St. Phillips Plaza, that did not last long at all. But that was totally fine with Kim.

“I worked overnight baking beignets, po’ boy sandwich bread, all of that in like the smallest kitchen ever. It was so hot and sweaty and I had no life at that point. So, I was pretty relieved when they told me they had to close for good.”

Even though she took a job afterward, working side by side with a close friend at Miraval, it was at this point that she knew she wanted to branch out into her own baking territory.

In February of 2020, Kim started the process of getting her business license and everything else she needed to create her handcrafted, pop-up baking bailiwick a viable operation. Then, well, March hit and we all know what happened after that.

Kim's Confections

Photo courtesy of Kim’s Confections

But Kim persisted. She knew that her tasty cookies, brittles, bread, and cakes would take off once the good folk of Tucson had their chance to eat them. She used that extra time to focus on her recipes, to finalize the permits process, and in 2021 she launched her website. From there, local markets took note and began carrying her goodies alongside her setting up at farmer’s markets when the opportunity arose. Things really started to ramp up for Kim when she began doing pop-up bazaars at local beer halls and tap rooms such as Caps &Corks and the Tucson Hop Shop. Because if you are drinking wheat and yeast you may as well be eating it as well.

A menu so sweet it’ll have you coming back for more

Kim’s Confections are marvelously delicate and so adorable to look at. The influence from that retro stand mixer comes fluidly forward with her presentation and execution of her treats. Honoring her mother’s Asian heritage sparkles in items such as her Brown Butter Chai Tea Cookies ($6.00), Tahini Almond Cookies ($7.50), and Matcha Coconut Macaroons ($7.00). Her father’s side is deliciously reflected in her Mexican Chocolate Brownies ($6.00), Spiced Pepita Brittle ($6.00), and Toasted Pepita Pumpkin Cookies ($6.00).

Kim's Confections

Kim’s Confections (Photo by Mark Whittaker)

Kim also creates marshmallows with flavors ranging from vanilla to rose to whatever she feels like infusing those billowy puffs of s’more and cocoa essentials. Now that summer has hit, she is making and offering homemade ice cream. This might be a bit of a how-dare-I-say-this moment but it is some of the best ice cream available in Tucson right now. Light, lush, with just the right whisper of berry, vanilla, or citrus flavor.

If you’re going gluten-free, look to her Burnt Honey Protein Bites ($6.00), Sweet and Spicy Mixed Nuts ($5.00), or the insanely yummy Fleur de Sel Caramels ($7.00). You won’t even notice you’re eating something sort of “good for you” because every bite that Kim concocts is supple and sweet with a nod to the past, while at the same time moving forward with her baked creations.

Kim's Confections

Photo courtesy of Kim’s Confections

As she likes to describe her confections: They have a vintage feel with a definite modern take.

You’ll agree once you bite into one. Having a taste of the past but a vision of the future is pretty rare in a cookie or ice cream these days.

For more information and to make an order, visit kimsconfections-tucson.com. Also, if you’d like to keep up with Kim where to find her treats, follow Kim’s Confections on Instagram.

It was a Sonoran hot dog that made Mark switch from music journalism to food writing when he moved to Tucson from San Francisco in 2006. He hasn’t been the same since.

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