Baking Thoughts: Cornucopia of sugar-coated  confections on a platter
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Baking Thoughts: Cornucopia of sugar-coated confections on a platter

October 27, 2019

By Arathi Menon

If pastry-making is an art, Moksha Sharma is an artist. Having worked for YPL Group of Hotels in Malaysia, serving customers of top names like JW Marriott and Ritz Carlton, she’s back home in Mysuru on a break before she flies off to Germany to don the mantle of the Head Chef of the central kitchen at the renowned Black Apron Bakery.

Meanwhile, she has written a cookbook, titled ‘Sugarcoated Season’ that’s making waves in the baking industry. The book has exquisite recipes of pastries with seasonal Indian ingredients. The book was released at a hotel in Mysuru recently. Moksha says, “The USP of the book is that all the recipes are inspired by the seasonal ingredients available in India and are divided based on the seasons.”

For example, the Mixed Fruit Tart is a summer recipe with all the summer fruits going into the tart while Panacotta with Fresh Pomegranate Glaze is a monsoon recipe considering pomegranates are monsoon’s gift in India. “It has always bothered me that despite the fact that a wide variety of ingredients are available in India, we do not make use of them. A pineapple pastry you get here has pineapple preserves from a can when the freshest pineapples are so easily available in this country,” she says.

What really makes her achievements seem incredible is that Moksha has managed these feats at a considerably young age of 24.She says she started chasing her passion at a very early age of 8. By 11, she was taking part in cooking competitions and winning accolades. “From a very young age, I was focused on baking and pastry-making. When I was in school and college, I was that girl who made birthday cakes for friends and teachers,” she says.

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She, however, took a degree in Business Management and went on to work at Jaguar and Land Rover in Bengaluru but kept her passion for pastry- making alive. Then she quit that job out of misery from not being able to pursue her true calling, she says, and did a short course in pastry art from Institute of Baking and Cake Art in Bengaluru. 

Moksha went on to study at Le Cordon Bleu in Malaysia and topped her class in 2016. After she interned at JW Marriott in Kuala Lumpur, she got an opportunity to join them as the Pastry Chef from where she says she picked up the nuances of pastry art.

As for her future plans, she wants to educate people about the industry and encourage others too to come forward to take up pastry art. “We often look up to Chefs in the West. We are capable of being as good as they are,” she says confidently.

She says she believes that “if one skilled person can teach 10 lay people, those 10 people will become skilled,” and that’s the way an industry would grow. While that’s the primary career goal in her life, she also aspires to become India’s Pastry Queen some day.

Moksha Sharma is the daughter of Krishan Kumar Sharma and Leena Sharma, residents of Nazarbad in city.


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