Deepika Kodikara (Home Baker).

Colombo’s got a lot of great home bakers. From the canonical Sita and Monique to the newer – but by no means lesser – players like Munchkin and Decadence, there’s an abundance of delicious options available to you come birthday, party or sweet tooth time.

But while bakers like Sita and Munchkin have a strong online presence, there are still several sugary gems that remain on the down low, who exist – without Facebook page or website – within an aunty network of gossip and phone calls. These are the bakers you discover at a family party, when your teeth sink into a slice of chocolatey heaven and the first words you utter are ‘who made this?’.

We recently discovered the wonders of Deepika Kodikara in similar salivating fashion. While at a party, I was drawn to a large chocolatey rectangle, intricately dusted with filigreed patterns of icing sugar. It was a thick, deep slab of brownie – golden in the centre and crumbling at the edges with cracks that deepened into a chocolatey abyss. ‘This is one of the best brownies, ever’ said a voice behind me; it was certainly one of the most beautiful brownies ever. Brownies, while delicious, rarely look elegant, simply presented as a clumsy hunks of fudgey goodness. The tray before, us, however, looked different – more delicate, refined and, well, more fashionable.

And it really did turn out to be the best brownie ever. Soft and chewy, with just the right amount of nuts, those chicly crusted slabs delivered a deep hit of sugary bliss. We can’t say more, except try one. They’re especially good heated ever so slightly and served with a large dollop of vanilla ice cream. It’s the kind of dessert you’d be proud to serve at a fancy event with fancy guests – a dessert that both looks and tastes wonderful.

But brownies aren’t all that Deepika bakes – and there’s a whole host of yummy treats waiting at the other end of a phone call – cupcakes, cheesecake, meringue and so on. A rather special dessert is her cupcake bouquet, where cupcakes are assembled, according to colour, amidst a bouquet of flowers. The price depends on the size and nature of the bouquet – you can also buy your own and she’ll put the cupcakes in it for you. Not a bad gift to whip out on Valentines Day. Call her for more details

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