Friday, 25 January 2013

Meet the Bakers - Divya Ninan-Eapen

Tonight's episode features another favorite baker of mine - the pretty-eyed ever-smiling Divya Ninan-Eapen of Tangerine's Kitchen

In conversation with Divya

DI: Tangerine - a name that I really love! Why did you pick out this name?
DN: I have had a food blog since 2007 that goes by the name Tangerine's Kitchen. That was my space where I had all the freedom to express my views regarding recipes handed to me, recipes from books and the web that have been tried and tested in my kitchen. I have also done book reviews which publishers have sent me. Along came baking on a commercial scale and I stuck on with the name. Tangerine because I love the colour.

DI: Your daughter also helps you in the kitchen?
DN: Yes, she is my little helper when I bake. She helps me with lining my cupcake trays when I get these bulk orders,counting the numbers and the little jobs that come with baking commercially.

DI: I've seen some of the sarees you've painted. Is that a hobby?
DN: Oh no! That's full time. I have a studio called "Rachel", based at my home. We design Indian textiles. Handpainting on sarees and dupattas is just one of the many work that we do on textiles. Ever since I got done with my Masters in Fine Arts, I have been a Textile Designer freelancing for handloom companies.

DI: Wow! So when does baking happen?
DN:  I find time for baking amidst my work. Baking keeps my work stress at bay. I knead bread to vent out all the frustrations that come with work.

DI: I met you first at the "Bake for Sandys" event. You stole our hearts & palates. :)
DN: Ah yes! It was an event that I read on the guild. It was a should I or shouldn't I thing considering the number of talented home bakers we have in Chennai. A dear person in my life told me, opportunity seldom knocks twice! But even when I reached Sandys the cakes that the other bakers had brought - all frosted and dressed well gave me the assurance I had no hope. But I won. Two of my bakes, Lemon blueberry yoghurt cake and the Lamingtons of the three I took were chosen and the rest is history.

DI: How has HBG inspired you in creating new recipes?
DN: A lot. Rather than recipes, I would say a source of inspiration for ideas and help. I always twist a recipe to suit my palate. Because I know that recipes you find in books and on the web always have that secret ingredient that is not revealed.

DI: What do you specialize in?
DN:  Homemade bread, quiches, pies, cookies and cakes or to sum it up, simple homely comfort food! Dips, sauces and preserves too.




Divya  wants to someday have a store that resmebles the British cottages something like those at her hometown - Nilgiris. A store for her textiles with a dainty little cafe for her homebaked goodness.

Psst: she still gets calls asking if this is Tangerine restaurant! Wonder how she handles them with all the patience in the world! :)



























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