A pastry chef supplies bottled desserts to restaurants in the city, from his central kitchen on the outskirts of town
A B Com graduate from Loyola, Shriram Rajendran’s next stop in life was Le Cordon Bleu, London, where he was to learn the culinary arts he always had a fascination for. After learning French cuisine and baking, for nine months each, Rajendran returned to Chennai to become a chef, but ended up taking on the role of pastry chef at The Leela Palace. “Our shortest day would be 14 hours and I eventually started liking what I did,” says Rajendran, who decided to start his own dessert factory, The Table, earlier this year and set up a central kitchen in Maduravoyal. Here, he started with desserts in jars this April, which he sends to restaurants like Double Roti, That Madras Place and Anjappar OMR, where they are retailed. Rajendran is also in talks with chains like Nuts N Spices to retail his jars that are also available for take away and delivery through Kola Pasi.
Using Belgian cocoberry powder, Callebaut chocolate and fruit puree from Switzerland (paired with the best local fruits from Koyambedu), Rajendran makes red velvet jars, carrot cake and cinnamon cream cheese, deconstructed macaroons and other desserts like tiramisu. And at Double Roti, you wil also find ice popsicles in three flavours — Virgin Mojito, Watermelon and Pineapple. “The Watermelon and Pineapple contain no sugar and all my desserts are preservative free,” he says, adding that their shelf life is about 10 days, when refrigerated.
With a team of eight working under him, Rajendran currently makes around 150 jars a day but claims his 2,700 sq ft state-of-the-art kitchen is capable of producing 6,000 a day. Perhaps he will be operating at full capacity when he starts retailing in supermarkets and launches the new alcoholic flavours he is working on. “I’m working on a White Chocolate Vodka and Whiskey Chocolate that will be available at Illusions, The Madras Pub, and hopefully other restaurants with a liquor permit. I am also working on a dessert breakfast called Healthy Start,” says Rajendran, who plans to take his jars to Coimbatore and Bengaluru next, and make ice cream by the end of the year. “I see a future in ice cream. It is machine made, works for our climate and there are very few players in the market,” he concludes.
The jars are priced between Rs 180-Rs 200. Details: 9962671777, thetable.co.in
— Ryan Peppin