Would you trust a ten-year-old to satisfy your sweet tooth? You must, because the artist behind your delicacy is going to be none other than the founder and the CBO(Chief Baking Officer) of ‘Four Seasons Pastry’, Vinusha M.K! Vinusha is a chef, a baker and an entrepreneur, who aspires to earn her name in the baking industry. Her precious set of accolades include the Young Baker award presented by Mr Dharmendra Pratap Yadav, IAS, and The Changemaker Award from Radio City 91.1. She also hosts a show on Chutti TV.
It all started when she was just eight years old, when she took a liking to look up things about baking. She constantly asked her mother to prepare a particular pastry and planned with her father what dessert they would make the next day and the day after. When she was just nine, Vinusha and her friend tried to bake a cake for her mother’s birthday. And that became the birth of an idea; an artist. It paved the way for a curious person with a casual hobby to become an embodiment of brilliance and exceptional artistry.
At ten, Vinusha had already started her well-received baking venture, ‘Four Seasons Pastry’. At ten, we were probably thinking about eating a lot of candies and cupcakes, while Vinusha had already set up her own bakery! But she is not just a baker, she also contributes a lot of her bakery’s proceedings to charity. So much maturity at such a little age must be appreciated!
I always go by the mantra “There is no failure, only feedback. Learn from your past, and do it better next time,” and Vinusha is a living example for it. “Macarons are one of the most difficult desserts to make,” she says. Later, she added, “It took me around ten to twenty tries before I could reach perfection.”
So every time the result didn’t reach her expectation, she patted herself on the shoulder, didn’t give up, and wished for better luck next time.
And I couldn’t help but ask her what her first thought would be if she finds out that a dish didn’t turn out flawless. She said that one has to always keep in mind the size of resources used while experimenting or practising a dish.
We don’t see a lot of young bakers around, so I assumed that there had to be an inspiration behind Vinusha’s career. When I brought up the topic of role models, her face brightened up and sparkled with joy and enthusiasm. The CEO of Hot Breads, Mr M. Mahadevan and the Founder and Chairman of CavinKare, Mr CK Ranganathan are her role models, both of whom believe that the sky is the only limit.
Wouldn’t you be surprised if I told you that Vinusha is a first-generation entrepreneur and chef/baker in her family? Her mother successfully runs a pre-school, and her father works in a corporate company. With her parents’ ultimate support, Vinusha has become what she is today. Vinusha adds that her parents make a lot of sacrifices for her and continuously assist and back her up during her presentations and speeches for colleges and other institutions.
Did you know that Vinusha has already had her Television debut? She got the opportunity to share the screen with Chef Damodharan, one of the most celebrated chefs of South India, on one of the shows of Jaya T.V. named ‘Adupankarai-Teen Kitchen’.
She has a long way to go and she already has a few goals in mind.
Firstly, she wants to teach baking to those who cannot afford to go abroad for further studies.
She also wants to expand her merchandise. She calls it her ‘Baking Kit’. “It is designed for kids from the age of seven to fourteen,” she says, adding that the contents include basic ingredients, the method, and information about the STEM(Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) about baking.
She wants to bring in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as provided by the United Nations. She mainly focuses on achieving ‘SDG Two: Zero Hunger’ and ‘SDG Three: Good Health and Well-being’.
Vinusha also claims that she started signing up for competitions and cook-offs when she was only nine years old. She even got to participate in the ‘Cadbury Contest’, which was led by Chef Damodharan.
On a side note, Vinusha’s favourite cook is her mother, who has been teaching her new dishes and methods of cooking since the pandemic commenced. “My favourite food is Paneer Butter Masala”, she said. Quick trivia: the first dish she ever made without anyone’s help was a high-protein salad.
Apart from cooking, she is also a bookworm. She gushes over Sudha Murthy’s writings and has read all of her work. She also sometimes resorts to drawing, but she does nothing better than her top-notch desserts.
She strongly believes that everyone can achieve their goals if they have a true passion for them. She also pressurizes on the fact that age is just a number, and it shouldn’t stop one from doing what makes them happy. And in the wise words of this young prodigy herself, “Follow your passion; Do what you like; Say less, do more!”
Interviewed by: Hasini Lakshminarayan
Written by: Shreya Raghuram
Edited by: Akshath Jaganmohan