WHEN Gina Maya Iyer and Priyanka Arora Nayak met over lunch early last year to discuss a baking convention, little did they know that it would snowball into an event eagerly awaited by the homebakers community across the country. With two other like-minded baking enthusiasts, Mitali Lalwani and Vishaka Rautela, along with MakeMyTrip travel expert Liz Pius getting onboard, the small vacation plan grew into the 120-participant strong BaCon 2016, held against the backdrop of the serene Goan seaside. “The homebaking community needs to stand by each other, as a strong social group rather than a cut-throat competitive market. The main idea is to facilitate networking,” says Mumbai-based Nayak.
The two and a half day convention has participants between 16 and 70 years of age, plus activities like live demos, interactive sessions and personalised masterclasses covering the basics of baking, from preparation to branding and marketing. “We let participants choose the experts they want to interact with through a poll,” says Rautela, who is also a home cook.
BaCon 2016 will see more than twice the number of expert bakers conducting sessions as compared to last year’s seven. Expect names like Joonie Tan from Lavonne Academy of Baking Science and Pastry Arts, Bengaluru, with her airbrushing lessons, organiser Lalwani and her session on sugar-free baking, and Vinita Lobo, an authorised Wilton method instructor, with her icing workshop. “The resources available here make it a perfect activity for amateurs to hone their craft and fine-tune their products,” adds Nayak.
From the city, we have the Chennai Home Bakers Group headed to the convention, comprising five popular home chefs—Sundari Sarita Subramaniam from The Baker’s Nook, Tasneem Ayub from Ammee’s Kitchen, Cindana Manickavel from Sugar Monkeys, Kamali Das from Edible Sins and Maaria Kulsum Tanveer from Cafe Adoniya. “This is my second time here and I am excited to pick up new techniques and recipes. It’s such a huge learning opportunity even for established businesswomen like us,” says Subramaniam. Tanveer is one of the experts in the panel this year, and will be holding a masterclass on rice crispy modelling with wafer accents.
Registrations closed. From September 22-25 at The Zuri White Sand Resort and Casino, Goa. Details: 9987065672
Participants can contribute to the crowdsourced goodie bag (a giveaway with items ranging from tools to edibles). Themed baking contests, a talent show and a farewell dinner have also been organised.