How do you make the combination of assorted chocolates? Also, tell us about the pricing that you set for the assorted chocolates and how important is to do the costing of the chocolate.
Kajal Koutikwar:-For compound based assorted chocolate it’s range starts from Rs 7 per pcs to Rs 15 per pcs, depends on its flavour and fillings inside.Assorted chocolates like Bourbon Rocher 5g price is around Rs 30-40 and 10g price is around Rs 60-80.
What are the essential skills that one need to have as a baker? Apart from culinary skills, how important is customer handling?
Kajal Koutikwar:- Bakers are rarely paid well, it requires long hours of work and dedication. I will say Love for food , Patience and Interest apart from good sense of blending and mixing essential raw ingredients are indispensable skills required to be a baker. Customer handling plays a vital role in any business. I treat customers with utmost respect and priority, I hear them, understands what they are looking for, provides as much support and notes I can and try to resolve there complains or problems effectively. I genuinely desire to help them, learn and grow, which also gives me a feeling of tremendous satisfaction and achievement.
Apart from the bakery, you are also specialized in making Ice Cream. What all have you innovated till now in this Genre and where did you get the idea of teaching how to make ice-cream along with bakery items.
Kajal Koutikwar:- Ice Cream is one such dessert which has no age/country/region/religion limitations. Every person in the world loves it, which excited me to think, innovate and explore in this category along with bakery items. My innovations are bit weird, Pani Puri flavoured Ice Cream, Masala Chai, Puran Poli, Shrikandh, Aamrakhand, Chocolate, Pan Kulfis are few of them.
You provide classes for both brownies and Blondies. How is brownie is different from Blondie in terms of taste and element?
Kajal Koutikwar:- Technically, blondies and brownies are both classified as ‘cookie bars’. They are softer than cookies but tougher than a cake. Both of these delicious confections are prepared in almost the same way, and baked, cut and presented in the same manner. But you’ll know the difference just by looking at the results – blondies are paler in colour while brownies have that familiar sumptuous brown colour that comes from its magic ingredient – chocolate!
What are the different varieties of Bread that you make and teach at your workshop? Which category of Bread is most liked by customers? How different are these breads from the ones available in the market?
Kajal Koutikwar:- Palak Bread with Semolina, Beet Root Bread, Ladi Pav, Burger Buns, WWF Bread, sandwich bread, French baguette, Pizza, Garlic Bread, Pita, Jewish Challah and others. Sandwich, Pizza, Ladi pav, Burger Buns and stuff buns are liked by most of my students. Bread available in markets is mostly made up of improvers and chemicals, whereas my breads are purely made up of yeast, water, oil, flour with no chemical or unsaturated fats and very healthy and easy to digest.
Which tool do you use to carve a design on the chocolates? How different it is from painting the cake on whipped cream? How important are chocolate mould and from where do you purchase the perfect chocolate mould?
Kajal Koutikwar:- I use polycarbonate moulds for different designs on chocolates. It is very difficult to paint on the whipped cream cake as it is very soft and we have to paint it carefully like a feather touch. Chocolate moulds play a very important role to give different shapes to the chocolate, especially polycarbonate moulds are perfect for couverture. I purchase the chocolate moulds from our nearby local shops.
What lead you towards the start of “THE BAKING ROOM”? Which has been your favourite theme cake from the list?
Kajal Koutikwar:- I always love cooking, but was never fond of Baking as it was not my forte. I learned Baking for my kid and eventually, I realized this suits my personality. As baking gives you a lot of opportunities to experiment, teaches you a lot of worthwhile lessons about life and at the end of it, you’re always rewarded with something delicious. What I love about baking is that anybody can do it, regardless of experience level and that’s where I thought of starting ”THE BAKING ROOM” and sharing my baking experiences, recipes with others. “ 50KG Mannequin GIANT LEHENGA CAKE” will always be near to my heart.
Apart from all the desserts and bakery, you are also having specialization in different types of gravy. How do you balance your love for sugar and spices?
Kajal Koutikwar:- At home, my mom always used to prepare nice spicy gravies and my dad was very particular about the taste and colour. Grown-up eating her homemade food and looking at her cooking skills, I learned more about the use of spices and the significance of fragrance and taste they add which always lead me to experiment with spicy foods. Love for Sugar is always there from childhood, but yes it’s difficult to maintain a balance between both.
How much time did it take for you to prepare that “ GIANT LEHENGA CAKE” which one cannot even think of? How was the feeling of getting your cake featured in Femina?
Kajal Koutikwar:-I took many days to decide what to bake, which will be eye-catching at the event. Someone who glances at it, for a moment, should get a thought if it’s a cake, and that’s how I thought for preparing a beautiful mannequin “GIANT LEHENGA CAKE” on which I put my blood, sweat and tears for almost 6 Days to make it impressive which includes 35KGS of Cake,20 KGS of Chocolate,10 kgs of Fondant and finally it paid out by getting featured in Femina Magazine.
The Feeling was unexplainable, it was a kind of euphoric feeling of butterflies in my stomach, a sense of success, recognition and a feeling of bit Famous.
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