If you open the Instagram account of any foodie, you will definitely find channels posting delicious pictures of meals as you scroll down their feed.
To be honest almost all of us enjoy watching meals being prepared or those 10 second clips of that perfect slice of cake being cut. But does anyone know what happens behind the scenes?
In Hungry Talk, we do something simple – Talk to some genuine foodies.
To begin the series, we start with a writer turned home-baker, Mayuri J Ravi – A young mother who balances raising a one year old kid, managing her home and running her new home bakery.
Why a home bakery?
First of all, I never thought I would even start a bakery. I always wanted to open a restaurant some day. Still want to. But a home bakery, this early, was never in the plans. There are many reasons to why a home bakery.
I have a one-year-old baby, and I can’t, or rather I don’t want to go for a job. My husband and I don’t want to leave him at a day care or hire a nanny. At least not yet. I was feeling frustrated and bored staying at home, and only looking after my baby. It became monotonous. So I started baking to keep myself busy and make my time at home more enjoyable.
The only way I could do that was by starting something of my own at home. That’s how I decided to start a home bakery.
Honestly, it’s not my effort alone. My husband has been extremely supportive about this. Without him and my parents, it would have been much more difficult to do this at this stage.
But the most important reason is that I want all my desserts to have that homemade touch. As a Home-baker, I cater to customers individually. Each ingredient that is added in my desserts is carefully selected by me. I bake for my customers, the way I would bake for my family, not compromising in any area.
Moreover, every order is freshly made for each customer. So you won’t have to worry about the quality of my products. Like our tagline goes, ‘All our desserts are freshly made at home with oodles of love’.
Most people don’t know that baking is not like cooking. It requires precision, timing and you cannot always do without different ingredients. So, before you work on an order, what kind of prep work do you usually do?
Yes, and that is why we request our customers to place an order at least 2 days in advance. As soon as an order is confirmed, I check if I have all the ingredients I need.
I usually have most of them stocked. But I still have to check that.
Next, if all my cake pans and other equipment are in good condition. Then the design has to be planned, if the client hasn’t provided any. I always make a mini trial cake to check the quality and the flavour. After all this, I start working on my order.
Since this is still in the early stages, and you have to manage multiple things apart from your home bakery, are you working with recipes you are comfortable with? Or have you tried experimenting with different ideas?
I try to experiment with different ideas as and when I can. Sometimes, the clients themselves challenge your creativity by giving new flavour combinations or designs to work on.
Apart from that, once or twice a month, I experiment with flavour combinations I haven’t tried before. I do like a trial and sampling of my desserts.
Is there a fixed menu? Or do your clients have some freedom to ask for different kinds of cakes. What’s the most interesting request you got?
We do have a menu, so people have an idea about what we do. But it’s not a fixed menu. We are open to customization. It’s only been two months since we started. We have not really got any interesting requests yet.
But we have something called a hot chocolate cake on our menu, basically inspired by the hot chocolate drink. I love hot chocolate and decided to make that into a cake.
Okay, you don’t have to disclose the recipe, but how did you combine hot chocolate and cake?
We actually make and pour hot chocolate drink (our own recipe) in the batter.
Also, we make a well in the center of the cake and pour heaps of chocolate ganache. So when you cut the cake, the ganache pours out
If things work out, do you plan to expand this into something bigger or are you planning on going back to a full-time job? When you your child starts school and is big enough…
I am a writer so initially my plan was to join work after my child turns one. But now, it doesn’t seem like that will work. So, yes, now that I am into baking and I am passionate about it, I do plan to expand it in future. I have learnt that making long-term plans doesn’t work for me. So let’s see how the business does in the next 6 months.
Apart from cakes, do you plan on baking anything else in the future?
Even now, I don’t just bake cakes. I make cupcakes, cookies, biscuits, brownies, and blondies. Planning to add more variety to our menu. So we’re testing and trying out recipes for cheesecakes and tartlets. And I don’t want to stick to just desserts. I would like to have some savoury items as well. We’ll soon be launching our savoury menu.
That was our short conversation with Mayuri. If you want to know more about her bakery, click here.
Credit for all the pictures goes to PraMay Photography.
*Do you wish to be a part of our foodie series? Contact us and share your story with us.