Want to get your hands on some ‘Sinsational’ sweets this Christmas? The cake Ponnu, Zaiba of Zaiba’s Sinsation is set to make this Christmas healthy and sweet with plum cakes, cookies, donuts, Christmas hampers and jars. How did she become a professional baker?
Zaiba says it all began when she attended a cookery class during a vacation. “I’m not into mainstream cooking and I love baking. I started by baking cakes for family occasions and used to get paid for them as a token of appreciation; and here I am!” she says. “Baking is fun and not as hard as it looks.”
Zaiba took her first order when she was in high school, and her business gathered momentum after she joined college. “It was all through word-of-mouth and reviews on Facebook. My friends and family recommended me to people they knew. People kept coming back because of the quality and taste,” she recollects.
What’s special about her Christmas delicacies? “I use fruit juice instead of alcohol in plum cakes,” Zaiba says. Plum cakes, jam cookies, ginger bread cookies, gift boxes, and jars and Christmas-themed cupcakes are some of the products that she offers. Gift boxes are also available and they cost between `450 and `750. “For kids, we sell separate boxes,” she adds.
Zaiba, a final year student of food science and technology, says that she focusses on quality and is conscious of taste and health. “I learn about nutritional labels and pay attention to the products I use,” she shares.
With many bakeries using cheap colours to enhance the looks of cakes, Zaiba says that she makes her own colour at home. “I prepare my own colour, which is 100% natural. If I am not able to make it due to lack of time, I use imported colour — which I procure from the US,” she shares.
She receives more than seven orders every day and has received 700 orders over the past year. “My mother is a huge source of support and she helps me with my work. With college and business, it is hectic. But, the love for baking, her support and, also the response I get from clients keep me going,” she smiles.
Zaiba doesn’t like using reference pictures. “I prefer customers giving me a description of what they want and I let my creativity do the rest. Being a huge fan of Dhanush, I have sketched his face on cupcakes,” she says. Zaiba likes experimenting and even infuses fruits with chocolate.
Does she have any baking tips to share? “When you bake a cake, there is a dome that puffs up on top which is cut and wasted while making a pastry. This can be avoided by tying a wet towel around it before popping it into the oven. I hate wasting cake, so I do this every time I bake,” she says.
Her cupcakes and brownies cost `350, and the price of her cakes start from `500. She plans to start her own YouTube channel to teach baking. Visit her Facebook page, Zaiba’s Sinsation. For details, call 9840672282