The ‘Podi’ Brownie Business

Saturday, 3 August 2013 00:05 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By Cheranka Mendis Thush’s podi brownie business promises not only heavenly homemade brownies, but it also promises to   ‘save the day, one brownie at a time’. I think this is probably one of the best ways to save any day: a plate of melt-in-your-mouth brownies with a perfect sugar high to help one get through the constantly pilling stack of work, or to help one relax, to surprise and make merry, brownies seems to be the next best option after cupcakes. While cupcakes reach out to an extensively wide group of people with the target group being from three to 80, brownies have managed to reserve a special place and have their own circle of fans. And while cupcakes can be baked by almost everyone, to perfect the ‘perfect brownie,’ one needs a special touch and practice to get the outer layer just crunchy enough and the inside soft and delicious. At Thush’s Podi Brownie Business, this is what you get – and more. As the name suggests it is a ‘podi’ business, but her brownies are by no means ‘podi’ (this is true not just in size but in quality as well). Having been working in the corporate sector for over eight years, Thushanthi has always wanted to do her own thing, even though this podi brownie business was nowhere close to what she had in mind. Her plan was to work for 10 years and find her own footing, but as luck would have it, she managed to back away earlier than expected and is taking up freelance work, in particular freelance writing from home. Her goal is to set up an operation that helps people in the near future. Be that as it may, her podi brownie story started as something to keep her occupied between work. “Believe it or not I can make brownies in my sleep now,” Thushanthi quipped, “this is something I’m really good at whipping up. Other than that I am by no means a domestic goddess.” Having found a recipe online, she has been baking brownies since her school days. The recipe has changed over the years, and enhanced with little additions she felt necessary to make her brownies the best in town. “I only started this four weeks ago,” she said, “and it’s been great so far.” Another Facebook project, Thushanthi explained that the name of her page and business which is an attraction in itself came up when she was explaining her venture to a friend over the phone. “I was telling my friend how it is a podi business and joking around when it hit me that this was probably a good idea for a name. And it worked. People are curious to know more when they hear of Thush’s Podi Brownie Business.” Another pull is how she keeps things simple – from the Facebook page which is very open, to the packaging, which is straightforward and, in its own way, unique. “I want to keep things as down to earth as possible,” she remarked. “My Facebook page is almost like a diary. The journey is fun and sharing it with others makes it all the more exciting. This way I keep things interactive and people are always welcome to make suggestions and come up with what they think should be good ingredients for new brownies.” Commenting on her packaging which resembles a typical good old package held together with twine (and a handwritten note from Thush) she added that since she started with what she had at home, this seemed to be the best idea. “It’s catching on now and the simple way I present it has been acknowledged by many.” So what does she have on offer? There is the Original Podi Brownie, Nutty Brownie, Blondie aka Sudu Brownies, Red Velvet Brownie, Cookie Brownies and Podi Kick Brownies on menu. The Nutty Brownie consists of the original plus a generous coating of nuts for extra crunch while the Blondies is an interesting mix as it has no chocolate but is instead packed with chocolate chips and vanilla. The Cookie Brownie is a heady layer of chewy chocolate chip cookie dough coated with chocolate brownies, and these as she puts it down on her menu are “exactly what you need when you can’t find someone non-smelly to hug you at the end of a long day. Your stomach and your heart will thank you for it.” The Podi Kick Brownies is another speciality which is dosed with a generous portion of Baileys Ice Cream and a hint of dark chocolate, a “must have when entertaining friends of indulging in all by yourself watching Bridget Jones on a Friday night in”. She also has something even better on her menu – Brownie Cakes. Customised according to her customer’s wants and budget, this is one cake anyone will be thrilled to have by his or her side during a celebration. The idea of a brownie cake came up when she was busy getting ready for her first-ever brownie photo shoot.  “A friend of mine agreed to take photos and it was his birthday. So I cut out brownies and layered them with all the yummy ingredients that happen to lie around in the kitchen. It turned out to be a triple brownie layer with cream cheese frosting, strawberries, raspberries and a smattering of blueberries,” Thushanthi said. So what next, we ask, will she be getting in to the whole gamut of bakery offerings? Her answer was a firm no. “This is my go-to thing. I like baking and I am good at this. Right now I don’t think I want to take up more than I can offer.” Noting that corporate orders are also undertaken, along with the standard dozen per batch, Thushanthi only asks customers to inform her a day or two in advance, especially if they are large orders. “However, if I am baking that day, I will bake a batch for you if you let me know in the morning.” How will you know when she is baking? Find her on Facebook and like her page; she is sure to update her status on a bake day.