Introducing the ITG Featured Gourmetpreneur of the week, Your Batter Half.
Your Batter Half is a dessert brand which specialises in what they refer to as ‘Comfort Desserts’. Yes, you read that right, it is dedicated to creating a wide range of sinfully indulgent gourmet desserts such as Cookies, Brownies, Dessert Bars, Cakes, Nut Butters, Dessert Sauces & Dips, Cupcakes, Muffins, Pies, Tarts, Hot Chocolate Mixes, Dessert Jars and Marshmallows that are sure to comfort your taste buds and make you happy after a long day at work, after a bad break up, or ‘just because’.
Meet Avanika Kiswani, the Founder, C(hief).E(verything).O(fficer). and Gourmetpreneur of Your Batter Half.
Avanika’s food journey is the perfect example of the quote by Kobi Yamada “Sometimes you have to take the leap and build your wings on the way down.” Read on to know more about Avanika’s food journey and how she quit a full time marketing job to give wings to her gourmet dreams of becoming a much loved baker.
Having being born and brought up in Abu Dhabi, U.A.E., Avanika’s interest in baking actually began when her family moved to India. A dessert lover to the core, she was suddenly deeply disappointed by the not so exciting cream laden variety of cakes and desserts that were commercially available in stores in the name of desserts. To satiate the family cravings for gourmet dessert, Avanika’s mother started baking Brownies and Carrot Cakes and Avanika would always be at her side in the kitchen, which gradually made her realise how much she loved baking and all things gourmet. She even expressed her deep rooted love for food by running a successful food blog whilst in college. Ever since then she somehow always knew that she wanted to pursue career in baking.
But don’t we all often think that being passionate about something is one thing but when it comes to building a career it’s perhaps prudent to be more grounded and get ourselves a real world job?
Well, that’s pretty much how Avanika thought when she took up a job in entertainment marketing with a media company: that she would get herself a real world job! Her job was demanding inasmuch that it not only involved long hours but there were times where she would more than often than not work overtime which of course meant stress and no work-life balance.
But when you love something, it always remains close to your heart no matter how far you push it away. The stresses and crazy hours associated with her job made her realise that she still loved baking as much and it was always on top of her mind. That’s when she thought she should give her passion for baking some direction. As a dedication to her love for food and baking, Avanika started Your Batter Half in November 2014 while she was still working.
Over a period of time, Avanika could see Your Batter Half growing in popularity and the response to her products from clients was also overwhelming. As a result, juggling time between an overly demanding job and a passion that needed her attention was becoming difficult. However, giving wings to her gourmet dreams so that Your Batter Half could scale new heights would entail that Avanika devote more time in her gourmet kitchen which could only be possible if she quit her full time marketing job. But again, when you have a job you’re always fearful, you always think twice before taking the plunge into the realm of the unknown.
But as they say, that’s the wonderful thing about taking the plunge, that nothing in the world can prepare you for it, you just know when you have to… and you finally do! That was it, one fine day she finally took the plunge by quitting her job and from then on there’s been no looking back literally!
Ask Avanika about her Dessert Bars and what made her decide to take the plunge and here’s what she had to say “Dessert Bars still need a bit of explanation, the most recurring question being- “Are they Brownies? and I have to explain that Brownies too are a sort of Dessert Bar“. She reminisces of her first independent baking experience in the kitchen turning into a mishap when she decided to make Brownies all by herself without any help from her mother. She proudly thought that she had observed her mother all this while and was now experienced enough to surprise her mother with her independently baked Brownies. Although she made the Brownies batter perfectly, she didn’t know that the microwave had to be set on a different (convection) mode for baking. What resulted was the Brownies batter was burnt so badly that the pan had to be disposed off. Says Avanika, “This is one of the many reasons I believe life is all about ‘taking a chance’. Sure, you’ll make mistakes, you may even enjoy the mistakes, but you’ll never know what’s perfect for you till you try. I loved my job, and when I quit, I didn’t know that YBH would be enough for a full time job (as a workoholic, having no work for days was my biggest fear). I hadn’t even dreamed that things would take off so quickly, so well and that this would become as busy as a full time job so quickly.” From having burnt Brownies so much that the pan had to be thrown away, it’s incredibly motivating and heartwarming to know that she got so good at making Brownies that they are the most loved of her creations. She says, “Our Brownies, our Gooey Chocolate Filled Bars were huge hits at exhibitions, which gave me the courage to move forward.”
For what started with just Cookies and Dessert Bars, Your Batter Half has come a long way to offer a wide range of truly comforting gourmet desserts. A simple glance at its menu is oh-so comforting that all you would want to do is snuggle up on your couch and dig into these gourmet goodies for comfort! The menu boasts of a range of gourmet Cookies, Brownies and Dessert Bars such as Double Chocolate Cookies, Gooey Chocolate Filled Cookie Bars, Nutella Cookie Cups, Cookie Pizzas, Chocolate Topped Brownies to a variety of other gourmet desserts such as Cupcakes, Muffins, Cake Pops, Nut Butters, Jar Desserts, Dessert Dips, Hot Chocolate Mixes, Marshmallows all in options of exotic flavours that you can choose from.
The love and adulation from clients for the range of dessert goodness whipped up by Your Batter Half has been so encouraging that off late Your Batter Half has also introduced cakes, cupcakes and other goodies on its menu which were previously only made by Avanika for personal consumption and for friends and family.
One of the most loved and top selling Dessert bars by Your Batter Half are the ‘Nutella Hazelnut Chocolate Caramel Bars’ or more simply the’Just Like Ferrero Bars’. These are something Avanika created for a custom order of a client who requested for something made with Nutella and Hazelnuts for her husband that would resemble the familiar Ferrero Rocher taste that her husband loved. They are so popular and loved by all that Avanika’s kitchen whips up boxes and boxes of these during festivals and literally never tires of making them.
Another of the most loved creations of Avanika are the Nutella Cookie Cups. Says Avanika “They are so loved that the sounds people make while eating them allow a very non humble boast of them being better than sex. We’ve had times there’s been endless lines of these (and of course the irresistible smell) filling our house waiting to be packed into gift boxes.”
For Your Batter Half, desserts signify only one thing: Happiness. Because aren’t desserts the best way to bring a huge smile on a person’s face and create a lasting memory in their mind? Avanika loves indulgent desserts because she rather enjoy eating one indulgent dessert that is worth it rather than 5 healthy desserts and believes that the myth that desserts are unhealthy isn’t completely true as people often have more sugar in their daily cuppa of tea or coffee than that of what a so called indulgent Cookie or Dessert Bar contains. She also loves creating the ‘just because’ desserts and works extra hard to ensure that the taste of all her ‘just because’ desserts is paramount. Ask Avanika about her approach towards Your Batter Half, and this is what she had to say “Basically our motto is, the thought of any of our goodies in your home should make you want to rush home quicker and bring a big smile to your face so we can move further in our mission of creating more smiles in the city.” Well, isn’t that incredibly endearing? <3 We are so glad that Avanika took the plunge, she not just helped build wings to Your Batter Half to make her gourmet career take off to new heights but also spreads gourmet happiness and smiles galore to everyone around with her Dessert Bars and other gourmet ‘Comfort Desserts’.
Well, looking at and talking about these gourmet ‘Comfort Desserts’ is definitely not at all comforting to our taste buds until we actually lay our hands on them and let our tastebuds bask in the comfort of pure gourmet goodness! <3
We can’t wait to order them and we suggest that even you don’t! Go ahead and indulge, they are sure to bring oodles of smiles and gourmet happiness to you and your loved ones! They even make perfect gourmet gifts and favours for birthdays, baby showers, weddings and special occasions.
Click here to visit Your Batter Half page on ITG.