"Great are they who see that spiritual is stronger than any material force, that thoughts rule the world. "
- Ralph Emerson
“Before stepping into the arena of cake decorating one must realize what good baking is, how crucial ingredients are, and how good your cakes taste if it’s not good on the taste buds, you’re not getting clients back” – Poonam Maria Prem
Passion is the genesis of genius, without passion there is no productivity. With that being said, we finally had a conversation with a passionate cake artist and baker Poonam Maria Prem is our latest edition in the baking elite category.
Before we begin with the interview we must take a moment and have a glimpse of Poonam’s vast Skillset – Poonam is a biotechnologist, a VFX designer and, now, Poonam is a celebrity cake artist and her cakes are visually mesmerizing, and she is very particular about the good taste of her cakes. Let’s begin this interview and explore the mindset and journey of a celebrity cake artist.
Q. How did you first get started with baking/cake decorating?
I was working as a visual effects artist at resonant news studio which worked for production houses like Warner Bros, I used to bake for my friends and colleagues and eventually in 2013 I left my VFX job. It was still a part-time hobby for me but eventually, over the years it turned into a full-fledged bakery outlet business.
Q. What are some things you do differently now than when you first started baking/cake decorating?
For the first time, it was more of a hobby on a small scale. The work that we do now is very similar to the work we do now, although, back then we didn’t have a team I was on my own.
Now it’s a big production space and we have masses of clients now. It started as a hobby and now it’s one the leading cake studios in the city.
Q. What has been your greatest challenge?
To keep up with the client requirements, irrespective of the climatic conditions we encounter, the city which I am from features high temperatures for most of the year.
Not so much now but, let’s say 2 years from now getting some exquisite ingredients as most companies were not importing in India, now it has been changed.
Getting everything of top-quality into the production was a major setback, since then a lot of companies have stepped in India and that helps me out a major way. Maintaining quality staff is very difficult, training them is another challenge.
Q. What is the most rewarding part of baking/cake decorating?
There are several aspects in this, A lot of clients of mine come from different cities and they travel 400-500 kilometers to pick up a cake from Zoey (her bakery’s name) that itself is very humbling, not rewarding but humbling. I’m associated with a lot of people now and we are now able to work on specialty cakes for the minority section of our society, such as people with lactose intolerance or gluten intolerant, that is rewarding to fulfill the requirements of such people in the society as well. A lot of people when they meet me they say that we started because we saw your journey, and that’s what I see as the most rewarding part about baking. It’s a tremendous feeling when you give wings to someone’s thought process unknowingly.
Q. What is your favorite baking/cake decorating tools?
My favorite tool in baking is my oven obviously *giggles* we can’t work without it, I love doing artworks with the airbrush, I absolutely adore working with an airbrush.
Read :- 8 Easy Cake Decorating Ideas
Q. Which one of your cakes is your favorite?
I made this planet cake which was a gravity-defying cake for one of my esteemed clients, gravity-defying cakes are my favorite. Not too many clients are interested in gravity-defying cakes because they are very pocket heavy, once in a while, we do some gravity-defying cakes and challenge arises when they travel for Indian roads.
Every year I make such cakes for my daughter with all the creativity I can put into, like a harry potter riding a magical broom cake or a dragon flying in the sky.
Q. Could you give some tips to people who have just started decorating cakes or would love to start?
Not a lot of people believe in improvising because in the end no matter how appealing it looks, it should have a good taste. Cake decorating comes secondary, an essential fundamental part is baking, the ones who want to start need to have dedication towards their work, what is happening today is everyone who owns an oven looks up to start a baking business without performing any prior study, this is not a thing for them. Everything needs to be planned, planning is very important, the workplace environment is important, hygiene is super important. Everyone should find their forte in baking because when you try to do everything it doesn’t work out. It’s not for the weak-hearted.
Q. What does the Bakers collective mean to you?
It will get a lot of like-minded people together and help everyone with learning something new from the artists they look up to. In baker’s collective fun with learning will take place and it sounds like a perfect environment.
This was the end of my questions and it was a very straightforward and to the point answering by our talented cake artist Poonam Maria Prem, from biotechnology to VFX and now in baking, this was her journey, she is an example of what sheer talent looks like. One crucial thing to get out of this is the way she is soo passionate about perfection, and when that happens nothing can hold a hurdle.