Confectioners and bakeries are somethings special in Bangalore. Once the haunt of Iyengar bakeries that continue to dot many localities and maintain fans with their oven-fresh home-style goodies, the recent few years have made way for the more poised and posh patisseries. Tea time nibbles are not just slices of a simple vanilla cake but more elaborate indulgences with cupcakes, macarons and petit fours. With Bangalore’s taste for flavours growing wider thanks to newer cultures assimilating here and with Bangaloreans themselves travelling around the world only to bring back a yearning for delicacies foreign, the city now boasts a sizeable number of bakeries run by home bakers or even professional chefs, all of whom have adopted new-age tastes and even philosophies into their products.
Moong dal and more
Intent on including healthy food practices into her love for baking, Chaitali Raizada created her own kind of cakes and cupcakes. The kind that uses only multi-grain flour (sprouted wheat, wheat, ragi and jowar and bajra), no maida, uses jaggery to sweeten, no sugar and wheatgrass. Through her home-baking unit Taantraa in Indiranagar she’s been selling confectionery that will please vegan and gluten-free diets alike. Don’t expect the flourishes of food colouring or cream whipped into tempting icing, these extras don’t fit in with Chaitali’s beliefs of organic handbaking.
Fastest selling: Chaitali started with five flavours of cakes and soon developed fourteen, of which the Moong Dal Cake (seen here as cupcakes) is her signature item.
Fun and trendy
After living in the States for eight years, Divya Ramasami and her husband came back to Bangalore and opened Bite Me in Indiranagar. No novice, Divya has been dealing with flour, baking powder and icing for the past 12 years. And with the cupcake shop, she took her passion a step forward. The cupcakes start at `40.
"We had a long list of things we wanted to do after coming back to India from San Francisco. In the States, I was working in the business side of fashion, and cupcakes were the one thing I understood properly. They are fun and trendy," she says.
As an after thought, she adds, "Actually, I fell in love with cupcakes one Christmas when we got this box of delicious cupcakes in the States."
Fastest selling: Wasabi Almond, red velvet and Gooey chocolate.
Taste of the world
With the suspense of a cake baking in an oven and the magic of ingredients coming together, baking proved to be such a passion for Sangeeta Damani that she apprenticed with a patisserie in London. It was that experience she brought to the table when she started her home unit in Bangalore. But orders for her desserts, going from New York cheesecakes to French eclairs, came in so fast and so many that by 2008 Spoonful of Sugar opened a take away counter in Indiranagar. Prices go from Rs 50 and up. If quality and consistency proved to be Spoonful’s selling point since, Sangeeta’s Le Cordon Bleu qualified daughter Yuvna has brought in innovation to the shop's products since joining it last year. Fans need to look out for Spoonful of Sugar Petit coming up soon.
Fastest selling: Yuvna’s flourless chocolate cake are competition for the pies that the store is popular for. “Banoffee pies, mud pies blueberry pies, those are certainly among the favourites,” says Sangeeta.
This exotic cupcake outlet on Lavelle Road is your one-stop shop if you want a fancy cake for your kid’s birthday, your anniversary or a bachelorette. With decorations and frills, Cup a Cake turns cupcakes into delightful cakes. The cakes are beautifully iced and have edible motifs.
You can indulge in Exotic vanilla - light textured cupcake topped with Italian vanilla butter cream, Dark chocolate desire - dark chocolate chip infused cupcake with dark chocolate creamy ganache, Passionate marble - vanilla and chocolate infused cupcake topped with light French cream.
Fastest selling: Velvet blueberry - exotic blueberry cupcake with berry frosting, Banana and oat meal cupcake - banana chunks and oatmeal cupcake topped with light cream.
Let’s do French
Husband and wife duo of Gouri and Tanmoy Savardekar started The Winking Macaron (TWM) in Frazer Town in March this year. Tanmoy’s experiences in some of the best professional kitchens now pours itself into the delicate touch it takes to make the very French and colourful macaron, a food trend that’s been raging for a while now. TWM mostly customises its products as orders are the mainstay of its business, but the cafe lets you peck on the menu that ranges savouries and breads - soon there’ll be more - and an assortment of desserts, all from `40 to 150.
Fastest selling: While macarons - different from macaroons - are TWM’s fastest selling item, the cheesecake, quiche and breads and the in-house muesli are quite popular too. Soon, macarons in desi flavours will be on the shelves for Diwali.
What started as a small-time hobby for John’s mother-in-law Leela Thomas, has now grown into three full-fledged stores in Bangalore. M G Road's Cupcake Noggins was started with the idea of sourcing all ingredients locally. “We wanted to come out with a store that sells affordable cupcakes,” says John. They come at ` 55 each. After working in a telephone company for 15 years, John started the outlet with his mother-in-law and wife two years back. Currently they have 45 flavours on their menu. You can indulge in the Hummingbird - a moist cake, topped with a cream cheese frosting, Vanilla Whammy - a vanilla cupcake with coloured vanilla buttercream and True Blue - chocolate cupcake with sky blue buttercream frosting topped with fondant pretties.
Fastest selling: The Red velvet and Chocolate Decadence .
Not just a Cuppa
Started two years back by Smita Ajila Prabhu, The Cup Cake in Jeevan Bheema Nagar is your destination for both ready-to-eat and custom-made creamy delights.
It all started when her sisters, based in New York, told her about the cupcake craze in the States. “I had a family friend, who was a chef. He offered to help. That is how I opened my bakery. Later I took a baking course myself and now I make all the cupcakes myself,” says Smita who makes birthday cakes made up of only cupcakes. Each cupcake has a letter on it and then these are put together to make it look like a whole cake. Delights at The Cup Cake are priced ` 50 onwards.
Fastest selling: Chocolate Ganache and the Red Velvet.
Oh so luxe
Karishma Chandani was inspired to bake after watching her mother do so. As the fascination grew through the years, Karishma started with baking for friends and family who urged that her bakes were worth placing orders for. It marked the birth of Cookies on Sankey Road Cross 12 years ago. “My pet name is Cookie that’s how I settled on the name for my venture,” says Karishma who runs her unit from home, with a workshop in the basement.
Cookies' handmade desserts, cakes and luxury Belgian chocolates range between ` 1,200 to 2,000.
“I don’t cut back on the quality of my ingredients. I use French butter, I source American cheese, I get the Belgian chocolate especially supplied for me, even the decorations I use are brought from Singapore,” says Karishma who's hoping she will pass her love of baking to her 13-year-old daughter.
Fastest Selling: Orders at Cookies roll off for Karishma’s Fruit Gateaux, Belgian chocolates and cheesecake.