- By Akhileshwari Anand Raj
Basabi Sarkar is a homemaker and home baker from Bangalore. She runs her home bakery called Basabi's Kitchen. Basabi is one who has always had the drive to do something for herself - just so that she can showcase her creativity, and in the process, also earn money and stand on her own two feet. Her ventures before her baking journey are aplenty - she sold snacks, hand-painted diyas, and put up Diwali stalls. She even ran a small daycare at home and worked as a home chef on a neighbourhood food delivery app. Her drive for her self- expression translated into many kinds of entrepreneurship. Basabi finally found her passion in baking when she joined the baking classes run by Deepali Sawant. We had the opportunity to interview her for more on her baking journey!
1. Tell us a bit about how your venture started out!
I have always wanted to do something for myself and to create my own identity, and this is why I was keen on starting a career which will be satisfying for me. After working as a home chef on a neighbourhood food delivery app and getting great feedback from my customers, I decided to take the plunge of becoming a baker as this is what inspired me the most. That experience is what got me started in the world of baking.
2. What were the initial difficulties that you faced, and how has it helped you become the baker you are today?
Some of my initial difficulties exist now too - the client’s lack of communication after ordering is an industry-wide problem, and not knowing how and where to start off from. My parents used to bake when I was younger and I loved these home-baked treats, at a time when there were no OTGs, and they used an electric oven. My baking journey started off in my apartment, with a great group of people who inspired me to do this and had given me great feedback. My network of customers is now much wider and people order from all over the city, and it is their feedback that keeps me going.
3. How do you decide to price your cakes and other goodies? Do you have issues like customers comparing your price to stores and asking for lower prices?
I always factor in the following items - the cost of raw material, the packaging, the type of cake. Other important considerations are flavours, customization work, delivery (if the customer does not pick it up themselves) and my time and effort. I have never had issues of customers comparing prices, they have all told me that my cakes are at reasonable prices.
4. What is your signature cake and why do you love baking it?
My signature cake is the Ice Cream Chocolate Cake. It is a lot of fun to make and tastes great too! It is the product of my daughter’s creativity when she asked me to combine both ice cream and cake and make icecream cake. I found it hard to get right initially because ice cream could melt anytime. But once I was able to master it, my daughter loved it and it became really popular in my friend circle and with my clients!
5. Do you face any challenge with delivery? How do you manage your deliveries?
I did face problems with the delivery part as there was nothing reliable initially. I now have my own delivery person, and Dunzo and Uber/ Ola are also really helpful for smaller cakes. I do the deliveries myself when the cakes are large or ornately decorated.
6. What are your top three tips for any aspiring baker?
- Be confident of your skills
- Stay up to date about the latest trends
- Manage your time well and start small
That was Basabi, and this is a truly inspiring story for all you lovely bakers and fans out there.
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