Indulge..... Pamper...... Spoil


With Christmas and New Year around the corner, I was in a mood of baking my favorite Plum Cake. That’s when my taste buds started tickling. It reminded me of the best Blueberry Cheese Cake that I had on my birthday… that was ordered from one the best cake shops in Mumbai…Indulge!!! My craving for indulging into some luscious melt in the mouth pastry, landed me and my friends at the doorsteps of the Indulge Cake Factory. Welcomed by the aroma of freshly baked cakes and the warm smile of the owner and Pastry Chef Fay Almeida, we had entered the heaven!! Grabbing the opportunity, we had a tête-à-tête with Fay , who inspired us to follow our dreams…just as she did!! Had to share the journey of a dynamic woman entrepreneur with you guys!!!

At what age did you start baking and cooking and when did you realize that ‘Oh, I am a good cook!!’
I started cooking after my marriage, at the age of 24. It was only because my husband is a foodie and I love him(almost blushing!!). That’s when I realized that I can cook.

What was the first cake that you baked?
The first cake that I baked was the Choco Coconut Walnut Cake. I made in the oven that was gifted to me by my friend. Post that I was hooked on to the oven. 

Have you taken any formal training in cooking or baking?
The only training that I have taken is for cake decoration. It was a three day training. At the end of the training my teacher told me that I should not continue because she thought that I was very bad at it. That day I decided to never look back.

What does baking/cooking mean to you?
OMG!!! I am obsessed with baking!! It is my life. It is my calling. All the television or reading that I do is only about baking and cooking.

Who is your inspiration?
My family! They have been my supporting pillars, helping me to keep up the rest of my life secure and functioning. My team, who inspires me to do better everyday as they strive for it too.  Indulge is the sum of my family at home, at work and my customers!!

How was “Indulge” your cake shop born?
After my son was 5 years old, I wanted to do something. I always believed in serving people. But was confused with the choices that I had. One day, I decided to put three chits into a bowl with three names written on it. Indulge was born as a “Lucky Draw” from those 3 choices.

What were the challenges that you faced during your start up?
My biggest challenge was that people said, “In Mulund we cant sell cakes”. I used to live in one BHK apartment, hence space was also a challenge. The first six months in Indulge went mainly into research of different types of cakes. I use to bake cakes daily and distribute them to my friends and family.  

How is your typical day at work?
There is nothing typical about my work.We start at 9 am.
I basically have 5 sections; Baking, Icing, Sugar work, Finishing and Account section. The first thing that I do is meet all my employees at each section and talk to them about the day. Scheduling is very important for me. Then, I got into Logistics. Now a days, I am more into Logistics than into baking. And each week we try and innovate new flavours. Like today we tried a Vegan Cake with Almond Butter Frosting.

What is the best compliment you have received for your baking?
There was a sms sent by my  husbands friend. I had sent him my Chocolate Bomb Cake (slurppp!!!). The sms read, “Here is an artist par excellence”.

Was there any occasion where you goofed up on a large order at the last minute? How did you cover it up?
Oh there are many…We are finally humans. Mistakes can happen. Logistical blunders do occur.

If you had to select that one cake….Which would you select as your favorite cake to bake? Why?
I love to bake Pound Cakes. The Vanilla and the Chocolate Pound. I love mixing the batter and checking when the cake is out of the oven. My favourite fragrance in the world!!! It is proven that Bakers are the happiest people on earth. You can take out all your frustration beating the batter. (Grin covered all over her face)

Which is your best selling cake?
The Double Dutch Truffle Cake. So much so, that I wanted to name my shop “The Double Dutch Truffle Place”. 

What are the qualities that are required to become a pastry chef?
Sheer perseverance…because skill can be developed but attitude is what we need to have. Believing that you can do it. Just focus and believe in yourself.

Why are Indians so skeptical about using an oven in their kitchen?
Its mainly electrical device that scares people. But things are changing. 

Your story is very inspiring to all the Indian Women who are so talented and passionate about their dreams but are unable to come out of their shell due to various reasons. What advise would you like to give them?
In my opinion when life hands you an opportunity, you make the most of it. Nobody can tell you this is what you should do. You should feel like doing it. Finally it’s not the money. My Joy is my money and my bread. I am able to touch so many peoples life through my passion ….that is my earning. 

Can you please share your one secret about baking which not many are aware of?
Firstly always use your ingredients at room temperature. Secondly do not over mix the batter of a cake especially after you have added the flour. 

Easy substitute of egg to make a cake for all our vegetarian cake lovers?
Oh there are many …. Condensed milk, curd etc. My favourite is Flax seed . Take one tablespoon of ground flax seed and add 3 tablespoon of water. This will be a substitute for 1 egg. Soak for 15 mins and it is ready to use. It is healthy too.

It was way past closing time… but I would see that nobody was in a hurry to leave the factory(that included us too!!). All her employees seemed to enjoy their work. That’s when I realized, Fay had rubbed of her passion and love for baking onto all of them. Finally I had to ask her that one last question…..

Last question…Please share  any one simple recipe of cake that can be made at home easily just for our Mocktail Mommy viewers?

Chocolate Pudding Cake:
Magically making its own fudge sauce, this cake is a great dessert for last minute guests or for your family. Serve it with ice cream for an extra special treat.

Ingredients:

Mix 1: 
¾ cup caster sugar
1 cup Maida (all purpose flour)
3 tablespoon cocoa powder
2 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup milk
1/3 cup melted butter
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract

Mix 2:
½ cup sugar
½ cup light brown sugar 
4 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 ¼ cups water, boiling hot

Serving suggestion:
Whipped cream topping.

Method:
Heat oven to 180 degree Celsius
In a medium bowl, stir in ¾ cup sugar, flour,3 Tbls cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Blend in milk,butter and vanilla, beat until smooth.
Pour batter into 8 inch square baking pan with 2 inch height.
In a separate bowl, stir together remaining ½ cup granulated sugar and brown sugar and remaining 4 Tbsp cocoa; sprinkle mixture evenly over the cake batter.
Pour hot water over the top; Do not stir.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until center is almost set. A tester should come out clean but should have some crumbs sticking to it.
Let it stand for 15 mins
Spoon into dessert dishes, spooning from bottom of the pan to the top.
Garnish with whipped topping.


Indulge Team:
www.indulgebakes.com
www.facebook.com/IndulgeCustomCakes
Contact: 8422993535/ 8422997474
Address: Shop Number 7,
               Munish Apartments,
               LBS Marg, OPP. J&J Gardens,
               Next to Canara Bank,
               Mulund West,
               Mumbai – 400 080



Comments

  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Hariharan!She is truly inspiring.

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  2. Amazing journey... and the recipe written over here is too tempting!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Samruddhi...do try the recipe...it's yummy!

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  3. Thank you for the feature... Mocktailmommies...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mocktailmommies would like to thank the entire team of Indulge for inspiring us!!

      Delete
  4. Thank you for the feature... Mocktailmommies...

    ReplyDelete
  5. Really a story which indulged me well written
    Fay you are such an inspiration to a all chef's

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Shreyas!Yes she is indeed very inspiring!

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  6. An inspiring woman

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  7. Follow ur heart...a living example! So very proud of Ms Fay...

    ReplyDelete

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