When you’re in Gurgaon the next time, give a miss to all those malls. Instead, try out what the city now stands for — a gamut of good bakeries and cake shops, apart from a lot else. The city is fast turning into a baker’s haven, with lots of corporates, students and homemakers turning to their passion of baking with a vigour never seen before. Check out some new bakeries.
Lil’ Cake Baker
Sonal Khurana, 24, is a professional entrepreneur running her own bakery for the last 2 years. “It started as a fluke when I baked a chocolate truffle cake for my friend’s birthday in Kamala Nehru College. Everybody liked it so much that soon I was the official baker of the gang,” says Khurana. Her cakes were such a hit, that after college, she thought it made complete business sense to open her own bakery. “My parents were apprehensive about the venture, but are now happy at my success,” says the self-taught baker. “I have learnt most of the baking and fondant decoration techniques on my own,” she adds.
Best sellers: Chocolate truffle cake, chocolate mousse, liquor cakes
Price: Rs. 700 to Rs. 1,000
Order: 24 to 48 hours in advance
Order on: thelilcakebaker.com
Where: DLF Cyber city
Ila- Truffle Tangles
Ila Prakash Singh, a hotel management graduate, was on a sabbatical when she delivered twins and made the most of it by getting back to her passion of cooking and baking five years ago. “It was my dream to open a restaurant one day, and I feel quite close to it now,” she says. Singh began with a 10 page multi-cuisine menu, but slowly shifted her focus to the patisseries. Singh likes to use a lot of natural products like fresh cream, butter cream and natural toppers like gummy bears, cookies and gems for decoration.
Best sellers: Chocolate truffle cake, Fruit Gateaux, carrot cup cake with marmalade
Price: Rs. 800 to Rs. 1,800 per kg
Time before order: 12 to 36 hrs
Order on: www.truffletangles.com
Where: Uniworld Gardens, Sohna Road
Divya Sreeji, 36, has been baking since the age of 12, but it was only recently that this working professional decided to take the baker’s route. “Baking has always been my passion. But I never thought it could be a full-time profession,” she says. Starting from her home, Sreeji has now bought a separate kitchen in Udyog Vihar, and bakes close to 50 cakes every week with three helpers. “My son (11) and daughter (5) are passionate bakers and help me with the measuring, mixing and decorating,” she says.
Best sellers: Belgian Chocolate Panache Cake, peanut butter crunch, watermelon cake
Price: Rs. 800 to Rs. 1,600
Order: 2 days in advance
Order on: www.decakery.com
Where: Udyog Vihar Phase 5, Gurgaon
Bee The Baker
As a head of an event management company in Gurgaon, Bayiravi Mani, 30, had a lot going for her, but she decided to give it all up to follow her passion for baking. “I came across a recipe book at a friend’s place and decided to try a few of them. I had never tried baking before that. My family does not eat eggs, so my knowledge of the baking world was very limited,” she says. Mani invested in a basic 28-litre oven, 2 cake tins and started baking for friends and family. Soon, Bee The Baker was launched in January 2012. Now, she is so popular that if you want a cake for your birthday, you need to book an order at least 10 days in advance. She does it all by herself, apart from some help from her husband.
Best sellers: Chocolate banana cake, filter coffee cake, customised themes
Price: Rs. 700 onwards
Order: 7-10 days in advance
Where: Vatika City, Sohna Road
If you thought that baking was only a woman’s domain, you probably haven’t met Manu Raina and Nishant Rodey, who left their jobs in the BPO sector to start this bakery four years ago. “I loved baking even as a teenager and had interned with a couple of hotels to learn the craft,” says Raina. The two have hired a kitchen in DLF Phase I and specialise in delivering fresh fruit and chocolate cakes at a notice of two hours to corporates and individual cake lovers in the city.
Best Sellers: Fresh fruit, Belgian Chocolate, Rocky Roll Fudge
Price: Rs. 400 to Rs. 900
Order: 2-3 hours in advance
Where: DLF Phase I