Tabitha Menezes is a person who always wanted to become a self-dependent woman. She studied commerce, worked at Apple Inc. and now is a successful professional baker. Presently, she is the founder of Mumbai-based home bakery Tabitha’s Cakes and Bakes. Many of you might have been wondering as to why and how the transition from Apple to a cake artist took place for her. Well, that happened mainly because of 2 reasons! And, to know the reasons you need to know the story of this talented home baker from Mumbai.
Today, Tabitha Menezes, the chief architect of Tabitha’s Cakes and Bakes joins us in this interview session from Mumbai to share her inspiring story!
Hi Tabitha, welcome to this interview session of conflatingVisions. To begin with, please introduce yourself to our readers.
Thank you so much conflatingVisions for this interview. I am a Commerce graduate. Worked as a manager for Apple. I had to quit my career after my son was born. I love to read. Currently, I am the owner of Tabitha’s Cakes and Bakes. While at home, I wanted to invest my time into something, hence, decided why not take up my passion to a higher level.
How did you learn baking? Did you go to any baking school?
My aunt loves to bake tea cakes. She is the one who introduced me to baking. So basically, I have never attended baking classes. I have some of her basic cake recipes, which I would play around with, for different flavours.
As I said, I love to read books and I spend a lot of money buying books from Amazon. Some of them would be related to baking. My greatest baking teacher has been my books, Google and YouTube.
How was your first baking experience? Did everything went right?
As a child, I really don’t remember my first experience. But yes, during the time I took up baking seriously it was my first ever cake order on my friend’s daughter’s birthday. At that time, I never knew what doweling/cake support is. By the time, it reached her place the top tier had slipped. Luckily, she was not too far from where I stay. I ran to her home got all my tools and icing and redid the cake.
Tell us about your baking venture Tabitha’s Cakes and Bakes. What motivated you to become an entrepreneur?
After my delivery, I was a stay at home mother. Initially, it was ok as I would remain busy with the baby. Once he turned 3 years old and started going to school, I would feel lonely and bored. I started baking for friends and family just to keep myself busy. That’s when I got my first order. My parents and husband were very supportive and asked me to take my passion ahead. My brother helped me make the logo for Tabitha’s Cakes and Bakes. Eventually, my Facebook page followed.
Creativity and commerce are integral parts of any business. How do you strike a productive balance between the two?
Definitely striking a balance between creativity and commerce is not an easy task. I make sure to use good quality ingredients. There is a lot of effort behind what you eat and it comes with a price. Cake decoration is an art.
What are some of the signature items of Tabitha’s Cakes and Bakes?
Tabitha’s Cakes and Bakes’ cupcakes and brownies are a must try. Our fruitcake is something you should pre-book before Christmas. We customize cakes as per your flavour and taste. We also personalize cakes depending on different themes.
Tabitha, what is your favourite cake recipe?
I am sure the simple chocolate cake from joy of baking is a must have recipe in every baker’s diary.
How has the decision to take up baking as a profession influenced your life?
Apart from being a stay at home mother, I wanted to prioritize my career at the same time. It makes me happy and independent. Today my son is proud of me. He gets his full attention and at the same time, I can do what I love to without feeling the guilt of the Mothers who have to leave their child with some day care.
How challenging is baking as a profession for you?
Different cake decorating techniques are challenging, as I am a self-trained baker. But I am very optimistic about myself.
Every day is a learning process and I am giving my best.
What are your future plans for growth?
Being a self-trained baker, I want to excel in this field and give my best. I am taking one step at a time. In the future, I would love to teach and start my own baking classes.
If you want someone to bake something special for you, who would it be and what would be the product?
I have grown up on simple teatime cake I would love to see my son bake it for me. He is already showing interest in baking!
Some baking lessons that you would like to share with us…
- Read, read and read.
- Keep trying new recipes and techniques.
- Never give up.
And, one final question of this session, if you have had one wish…
I would love to travel around the world and learn more about baking and cake decorating from different artists!
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