WHEN talking about cyclones it states: “The eye is a region of mostly calm weather at the centre of strong tropical cyclones.”

Combine this with ‘If you can’t stand the heat get out of the kitchen’ then you have the perfect location where Ashiba Sawhney likes to be.

She said: “Baking makes me feel calm and at peace. It is gives me a sense of belonging.

“I am self taught and started at home. I continue to do what I do as this is what I wanted to do.

"In the last three years it has been difficult but I have kept going and things are picking up.

“Facebook has given me a face and being out at the Farmer’s Market means I am providing a niche service making cakes made to order.

“The ones I sell on the market have been made the day before so they are as fresh as possible.”

She has a passion for baking, a passion for producing quality food with premium ingredients to give her customers the tastes they will remember.

Ashiba has been in business for 15 years, 12 in the city of Hyderabad in India and three based in Taunton.

Her path to enlightenment in the world of baking came via of all things accountancy.

When in India she worked for four years as an accountant with Pricewaterhousecoopers and was one of the financial whizz kids.

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She could have stuck with it and enjoyed a lucrative career but decided her true passion was in baking and gave up her job.

Her family thought she was in her own words ‘bonkers’ but Ashiba knew what she wanted to do and stuck to her guns.

She said: “Working for Pricewaterhousecoopers meant I was constantly on the go, it was a 24/7 job,

“But I did not feel I had the balance I needed in my life between family and work.

“Baking was what I wanted to do.

“I do have a love for what I do and when I started my business it was a struggle but slowly I created a reputation and became the fourth best baker in Hyderabad.

“It was a boutique bakery which made food to orders for people.

“It was made as fresh as possible and people had their cakes within 24 hours of them being made.

“I worked at home and created a new menu every week and produced a range and cakes such as chocolate and coffee mousse, Banoffee Pie, Black forest Gateau or Devil’s chocolate and coffee mousse.

Then three years ago, Ashiba moved to Taunton to be with her husband and had to re-launch her business here.

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The change of location has meant a change in the type of cakes and cupcakes which Ashiba now makes.

Her cake list now includes:

- Black Forest Gateau cupcakes.

- Lemon drizzle with elderflower

- Pavlova cupcakes

- Orange and almond

- Banana and sate

- Lemon drizzle with a twist of cherry and almond

- Lemmon drizzle with elderflower icing

- Cupcakes with dark cherries.

- Chocolate Banana cake

- Double chocolate fudge brownies

- Eton Mess The Classic British dessert

- Lemon curd blueberry Pavlova

- Red berry custard Pavlova

- Devils choc caramel drip cake

- Banana cupcake with cream cheese frosting

- Semi Naked Devil’s Chocolate cake layered with garden fresh Strawberries

The change in menu is to suit the palate of people in and around Taunton, but it is at times leaving Ashiba frustrated.

The feeling of frustration is as she knows she can do much, much more and just wants to be able to do this for her customers I have been experimenting with apple and dark cherries as well as doing gluten free which has gone down well.

“I want to try new things and get people to understand different flavours.

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“When I first arrived I could not believe how sweet people want things. In India we like things a lot less sugary so you can taste the flavours.

“Things have been slow and steady and I do feel I could do more and hope I still can. I have made a Baily’s Irish coffee cake with fresh cream and toasted walnuts and also made a Rosewater, pistachio, Black forest Gateau with cherry and almond.

“I am always looking to do something different and always trying to break the rules. What keeps me going is I have a passion for baking and I love it.

“You job should never feel like a job as it should make you content.

“What I feel now is not what I felt when I was working for Pricewaterhousecoopers. I put a lot of love into my baking and food is nostalgia as it gives you memories of time spent with families and loved ones.”

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