Baking the very best


Can you describe this name ‘16 SWEET SIN ROAD’ for us?

Rimli Biswas:- You can leave it to my husband to come up with something cryptic! He came up with the name and states two connotations to it – 1) as you would have guessed, the name is a play on the phrases ‘Sweet 16’, something that evokes the promise and liveliness of youth and ‘Sweet Sin’ something that connotates something rewarding, desirable 2) the word road here indicates that the venture is a journey. So when you combine the two meanings, you get a journey of discovering joy, hope and rewards 

What is the most rewarding part of being a Cake Designer? 

Rimli Biswas:- Being able to impact thousands of individuals in their very special moments: be it a birthday or an engagement or any other life event. That fact that I get a chance to create memories and experiences is perhaps the biggest reward of this work 

Which is your favourite equipment while you are baking or decorating the cake? 

Rimli Biswas:- Process efficiency is critical for a baker especially on days of super heavy workloads. My trusted KitchenAid is a blessing in this regard. It does all the heavy lifting of kneading and whipping and allows me to focus on designing 

How do you make your fondant tasty? 

Rimli Biswas:- I make my own marshmallow that goes into the fondant along with some natural oils 

Please tell us, how has baking has helped you in your personal life as well? 

Rimli Biswas:- Patience! Baking is and test of patience and perseverance. I have learnt to take things gradually and not rush. I have realized that arriving at the destination is more important than beating someone else to it. 

What are your baking plans for the future? What would you like to change in the baking world or you find the industry perfect? 

Rimli Biswas:- The only thing perfect is the reality of evolution! No single industry is perfect. There are major headwinds in the global economy right now, consumer spending is shrinking and irrespective of the scale of the industry, you need to be able to adapt to the change. So from a macro standpoint, I foresee a wave of consolidation in the baking industry. There are far too many players both in the organized and the unorganized sector. While yes, there is still enough for everyone to go around, scales need to be built and that will come either through some entities closing shop or through consolidation. Additionally, I foresee major process and raw materials innovation.

And this again on two fronts:

1) As customer demands get more complex, the support system around them also needs to evolve.

2) As an industry we need to take actionable steps on reducing our carbon footprint. Case in point – read a report that a pastry chef in Germany provides clients with edible receipts. These are steps of immediate importance for us both as individual bakers and as an industry 

What is your take on Indian mithai fusion cake and which more Indian mithai flavoured cake do see coming next?

Rimli Biswas:- Being a Bong, I would love to see some Bengali influence shaping up. Gur or jaggery is a huge business in Bengal and it is a preferred sweetener in many homes. Specifically, date palm jaggery or Nolen Gur. This form of jaggery has an amazing flavour of molasses and chocolate with beautiful end notes of coffee and a hint of nuts. Being such a rich aroma, it would pair beautifully with something delicate and velvety. 

Please tell us the best technique that usually bakers miss while preparing the rice paste flowers? 

Rimli Biswas:- Wouldn’t really call it a miss but something that requires involved prep – cooking the paste till the right consistency. Too hard and it is difficult to form and too soft and it is useless. I have seen many bakers complaining that even when using the same recipe, they have achieved different results on different days. And this is where the catch is – rice paste preparation is very involved and depends not just on your ingredients and proportions but also what the temperature is that day and how humid it is. The weather is a major variable and that needs to be accounted for. 

Which is the most important ingredient required to prepare the rice paste flower and which is your favourite brands from which you prefer to buy the respective ingredient? 

Rimli Biswas:- As mentioned before, the prep is very involved and every single ingredient plays a critical part. However, one major differentiator can be non-glutenous rice flour. I would not prescribe a specific brand but would urge bakers to experiment and see what works best in their specific condition.