Deepika Padukone, NASA swear by this Bengaluru home-based baker's cookies
She's a cosmetic scientist, but her love didn't lie in studying manufacture of perfumes, makeup and shampoos. After working in NY-based financial firm The Blackstone Group and Coffee Board of India, she realized making cookies was her love. Thus in July 2016, she dropped everything and started baking and selling cookies. You know who's a fan of those? None other than actor Deepika Padukone!
Oxford-based Ben's Cookies set her up with her love
Anutha Shetty, Bengaluru-based baker, is humbled that her cookie brand The Love & Crumble Co is receiving so much adulation. She narrates that her romance with cookies started when she was studying in London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London. It kick-started the day she stumbled upon American style soft-centered cookies baked by Oxford-based Ben's Cookies, for which she didn't mind waiting.
Making an oven her companion, she baked and baked
Once she returned to India in 2010, she wanted to start something like Ben's Cookies, but realized it's tough to bake a soft cookie. But she trudged on. Making an oven her companion, she baked some cookies, which were lapped up by her parents' friends. She soon started getting orders for occasions like baby showers, naming ceremony, birthdays, anniversaries, etc.
Anutha's initial hesitation for bigger orders flew away soon
Word-of-mouth helped her get orders for Diwali and Christmas, which made her hesitant. "What if I messed up?" was her thought. That soon proved wrong, when she mustered up courage and set up her brand. Within two months, Padukone was raving about the cookies on Instagram. She said, "These have got to be the best cookies in the world!I'm so proud of you!"
Deepika's public praise of her cookies was a "happy surprise"
Recalling that, Anutha said it was a "happy surprise" and gave huge mileage to her brand. But she wasn't aware how her cookies reached the actress until she remembered how her friend ordered "an assortment of cookies including dark chocolate chip and Nutella-sea salt for a gift." "For me, it was just another business order," but when Padukone tagged her, she realized the link.
Her second biggest fan: NASA scientists
There's another place her cookies have a proud place: NASA! Anutha's family friend who works in the space research organization had asked her to pack a bunch of cookies for him on his way back to the US. "Little did I know that the cookies were meant for scientists at NASA. It was a hit and now it's routine," she smilingly said.
Currently 13 varieties on offer; soon 'orange, milk chocolate-bacon'
Currently, she bakes 13 varieties like Nutella, peanut-butter and jelly, dark, milk and white chocolate chips, and the popular 'Brookie' (brownie-cookie combination). "I'm thinking of adding orange, and milk chocolate with bacon. I'm working on how to keep the bacon crumbly," she narrates. Her cookies are priced from Rs. 80 to Rs. 1200. For orders, Anutha needs a 12-hour notice and a generous appetite!
She soon plans to open stores in India and abroad
Though she bakes at her Lavelle Road home and sells through premium food delivery app called Entrée for now, she has plans to open stores in major Indian cities, like Bengaluru Mumbai and Delhi. She also has eyes on Paris, London and New York.