We introduce you to the amazing Chef Haseeb who works as a Cake Decorator in the famous Magnolia Bakery, New York City. It is well known for its American desserts and he is the only Pakistani worldwide to reach this level in the Magnolia hierarchy. We had an up close and personal interview with Haseeb recently. He was kind enough to make red velvet cupcakes for us and people, this guy is the REAL DEAL!!
Give us a little background on your educational and professional career, Chef.
“When we take about education, you can go for a certificate or a diploma which is usually less than a year. This gives you the skills and knowledge for an entry level position. But if you want more you can go for the advance degree for management and executive chef’s level. The college that I chose was COTHM “College of Tourism and Hotel Management” Lahore. They offer great programs that are short term and long term. My program was a Graduate Diploma in Culinary Arts which is a 2 years course. A hand on experience working and learning with great chefs. The program includes Hot kitchen, Cold kitchen, Carving, Pastry department, Food styling, Menu creating and Table setup. You actually get to work and learn the true professional way. Furthermore, whatever level you choose it is important to choose the right program. The faculty, accreditation and facilities.”
Pastry chefs have it tough don’t they? With so many measurements one must have to be a perfectionist. What is the toughest and best thing about being a pastry chef in your opinion?
“Yes, a pastry chef is an important component of any professional kitchen. He is responsible for baking and decorating desserts. It is about giving great attention to detailed work with precision and careful measurements. I think baking and pastry design is both art and science. Apart from creative aspects of the job it is critical that baking professionals have a solid understanding of the science behind their craft. The great thing about being a pastry chef is that once you have obtained the necessary skills and educational degrees to get a job in the field, you can take your talents pretty much anywhere like restaurants, bakeries or even your own private business and are always in demand.
There are specializations like cake decorator, which I chose, because I am passionate about it. There is bread baking a complete study of bread from scratch and Patisserie courses. It’s an exciting, full of challenges and rewarding career option for those who have a passion for creating great desserts.”
Let’s talk about your interests and passions, Haseeb. What or who has been your motivation?
“My inspiration was my Mom, as I would always saw her making lovely food, standing for long hours. I always wondered what she was doing. Getting curious I actually started to help her started from chopping, slicing getting the prep work done. It didn’t end there and my childhood craze of cakes didn’t let me sit silently. Where ever I would see a slice of cake I could actually not resist having it. So I started from home. I baked and decorated my first cake which everyone loved. That day was enough motivation for me to take this up as a career.”
Haseeb just has one thing to say to everyone “If I Can, So Can You.”
We were awestruck and astounded by Haseeb and his beautiful cakes. He has the most refreshing personality and the cakes speak for themselves. It was great to know that people from Pakistan are spreading their wings to all fields and Haseeb stands tall as an example for everyone who wishes to follow their dreams.