"Do not be embarrassed by your mistakes. Nothing can teach us better than our understanding of them. This is one of the best ways of self-education."
- Thomas Carlyle
“In the baking business, there are certain things that are commercially viable and others that are done just for decoration. Learn to differentiate between the two.” – Namrataa Mahalley
Practice is the hardest part of learning, and training is the essence of transformation. This thought truly resonates with baker Namrataa Mahalley, who runs the famed couture cake studio Namrataa’s Bakehouse. This super talented baker started baking for fun as a child, watching and learning from her mother. Later, to upgrade her inherited baking skills, she took some short courses and workshops from a few artists in the industry.
With an MBA in Finance, Namrataa has previously worked in three banks during a span of seven years. She then left her banking job to take over her family baking business and now runs two studios – one is a bakery and the other studio is where baking classes are held.
As we all have heard, the firsts are always special, and Namrataa remembers her first cake that she baked was the basic Vanilla Cake made way back in 1996. She loves baking cakes that have any kind of nut flavours because of its slightly challenging process. The Russian Honey Cake is another one that she would like to try out.
All things said, baking is fun, no doubt. And it has always been so for Namrataa, who says “If you love doing something, then I don’t think you will find any kind of challenges. I have loved baking since my childhood and I never saw cakes as a challenge. It was always fun for me.”
Talking about her experience working with Bulb and Key, she says, “I was a part of Bulb and Key’s inaugural function and at that time I never thought that I would be a part of their team as well. With the kind of new things they are coming up with, I am sure they are going to go a long way and be a class apart.” People now recognize her not just as a baker but also as a guest blogger for Bulb and Key, which is a great addition to her resume, she says.
This superbly talented baker and cake artist aims to expand her business every year, to keep up with the changing trends in baking and to open three more centres in the next five years. She advises aspiring bakers to practice until they get their basics right. If they do so, nothing can ever go wrong. Investing in bigger baking courses should be done later, she feels. We agree. There is no point in taking courses if we don’t practice what we’ve learnt.
“It’s not that easy to start a baking business. There is a lot of planning and forecasting that goes into it” says Namrataa.
A goal without a plan is just a wish. All we need is the plan, the road map, and the courage to press on to our destination. – Namrataa Mahalley