Mom Next Door: Roshi Muns / Society Bakery Owner and Mom to Henry
Society Bakery founder Roshi Muns, 40, knows her way around an oven. Even before putting up her first bakery along Greenville Avenue in 2003, her homemade chocolate chip cookies were the perennial favorite amongst friends and family. After various stints in different fields of work, the Dallas resident and Texas Tech alum finally took the plunge and turned her hobby into a real business after lots of encouragement from a former boss.
One shop turned into two when she opened a second location in Medical City, and Roshi will open her third venue at Preston Royal Village shopping center later this spring, giving loyal patrons not one, but three opportunities to follow her motto: “Be good to your sweet tooth; be good to society.” Aside from bakery duties, the single mom enjoys every moment she has with her 8 1/2-year-old son, Henry.
Which came first: baking or wanting to do something philanthropic, or both?
Baking came first. [But] from the beginning, we donated 10 percent of sales to charity. Now it’s actually more than 10 percent of profits because I wound up saying “yes” to everybody!
Can you imagine living anywhere else outside of Big D?
I really love Dallas. The city has changed tremendously since 2001 and I love all of the changes. I came from Austin, and I missed Austin in the beginning — part of me still misses Austin and would love to one day bounce back and forth between Austin and Dallas — but I’m happy here.
What was the last thing you did before I called you?
I was hanging lights on the patio.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
What time do you wake up?
6am. Sometimes I hit the snooze button until 6:30, but if I really want my son to get to school on time, it’s 6.
Last thing you do before you go to bed
Say my prayers
If your life were a song, what would it be called?
On a scale of 1-10, how excited are you right now about your life?
Ten because even 13 years later, and with my son who’s 8 1/2 years old, I feel like life is just beginning. There’s always so much around the corner that’s positive; there’s a lot to look forward to.
Three things in your purse besides your cell phone and wallet
A lot of paper, a pen, Bare Minerals’ Pop of Passion Lip-Oil Balm — so if I want to look somewhat presentable, I’ll put this on right before I go in somewhere.
What do you guys do on the weekends?
We play Minecraft and videogames and build Legos. He loves NorthPark Center, of course, because of the Lego store. But every weekend is different.
Flashback to 2003 when you first opened Society Bakery, what was running through your mind?
I was really excited about the future and growing the business. I built it with no-turning-back success in mind.
What made you decide on your third location?
I’ve wanted it to be on that corner for at least 10 years. The opportunity just came along, and we grabbed it. A lot of our customers are already in that neighborhood.
If you could have another Society Bakery anywhere else in the world, where would it be?
I would love to have a bakery in Austin and then New York and Los Angeles.
Three words to describe yourself
Smart. Creative. Kind.
Favorite chefs ever
Julia Child and Thomas Keller
Favorite part of the house
My living room and kitchen are kind of connected, so I love that area because if you’re cooking or baking, you can talk to the person in the living room.
Name one thing a kitchen should never be without
Sweet or savory
Favorite thing on your menu
That changes from week to week. Right now, it’s our M&M cookies.
What’s your favorite thing on your menu, ever?
I always have a special spot in my heart for the chocolate chip cookies because that was the first product I ever sold. That’s what I used to take to parties and what I would make for friends. That was my hobby. I would bake chocolate chip cookies no matter what mood I was in. I almost named the bakery Society Cookies, but then I thought “maybe we should think bigger than this.”
Proudest mom moment, as of late
My son is an amazing speller. He takes a spelling test every Friday, and he makes 100 percent of the words. I’m proud of what a well-rounded, smart, young man he’s turning into.
When was the last time you lost your temper?
Sometime last week. It’s usually while I’m driving.
How often do you cook dinner at home?
Four to five days a week. OK so I say I cook but sometimes it [means] popping in Applegate Naturals chicken nuggets. I should rephrase that. We eat at home four to five days a week.
What are your son’s favorite foods cooked by you?
He likes chicken and rice and turkey kabobs.
Is he your guinea pig?
For sure, and he has strong opinions.
What’s one rule Henry ignores?
Bedtime. It should be 9pm but he’s always trying to negotiate.
What’s the one rule he’s never allowed to break?
Not being kind to others. I want him to respect his teachers and respect his friends.
One of the coolest things about being a mom
Thinking beyond yourself
If you could invite anyone over for dinner, who would it be?
Danny Meyer, [the New York restaurateur who founded the internationally renowned Shake Shack.]
If you could go over to someone’s house for dinner, who would it be?
I would love to meet Meryl Streep.
Favorite places to go around town:
I love Rise n°1 Salon De Souffle [the restaurant].
Three things moms should not feel guilty about
-I don’t think moms should feel guilty about how they look. I don't think you should stress about what you’re wearing.
-Going to bat for their child because you are their No. 1 advocate
-Wanting more for their child, always wanting the best for them or just making sure they are in a good environment
Question you are asked the most:
What our No. 1 product is
So what is your no. 1 product?
Vanilla Salted Caramel cupcake
What do you wish you had more time for?
My personal life. I take my son to school, and I pick him up every day, and I try to be present. The rest of the time is the bakery. I am missing a little bit of balance, but I’m doing what I have to do right now.
What have you learned from your son?
I’ve learned how to slow down.
Chefs competing on TV: Good idea or run its course?
Run its course. I’m really not drawn to the competitive baking shows or challenges. The ones I love are really the reruns. I like watching Barefoot Contessa, Giada at Home — the ones that are soothing.
One good habit you’d like to pass on to your child
I follow this saying: “Do what you have to do first, then do what you want to do.” I hope that he can learn that from me — that you really need to make good decisions and prioritize your day.
Your bad habit you hope he won’t pick up
Being too critical
One superpower you wish you had:
The ability to make everyone happy at that moment
Last country you visited:
Finland in my 20s. I’m dying to go overseas again. I’d love to go back to France.
If you had 24 hours all to yourself, what would you do?
I want to wake up with no alarm, have a leisurely cup of coffee at home, be in my sweats and see where the day takes me with no commitments. I just want to chill out with a true day off.