It may just seem like a cake at first glance, but the cake that the BaKaurs made for Disney's Magic Bake-Off has a full story behind it. This cake means so much more than just two girls baking a cake for teen baking competition. Our cake told a story that we both feel attached to. Similarly to the other contestants on our episode, we created our very own princess - however, ours was named Seva Kaur, who Sidak, my teammate, and I both connect to. I am so thankful to Disney and Tastemade for allowing us the opportunity share Seva Kaur's story and allow her to be a role model to all of the other beautiful and powerful Kaurs all over the world who watched the episode.
The guidelines which the producers had given to us were pretty strict. We needed to make a 3 tiered cake that represents our idea of a modern-day princess and the impact she would have on the world. On the bottom tier, we had to create what her "kingdom" would look like. In addition, we had to include some sort of 3D element on the cake.The top two tiers would be separated by a glass globe in which you must include something to symbolize the princess. Of course, our cakes and frosting needed to be made from scratch and each team of 2 had 4 hours to complete this cake.
Seva Kaur is a healthcare hero (represented by the scrubs on the second tier) who puts her life on the line to help others. The meaning of seva in Punjabi is selfless service, or giving back without expecting anything in return, which is a code that Seva Kaur lives by in her day to day life. Although she is a doctor, she also enjoys dressing up (represented by the drape coming across the cake, our 3D element) and going to Indian parties to do Bhangra, a cultural Punjabi dance, and spreading the high energy (represented by the colorful building) dance style within the hospital which she works at. Seva Kaur has a special place in her heart for cancer patients, which is why we decided to make a heart shaped mold inside of our glass globe with a cancer ribbon.
Our team name, The BaKaurs represents Seva Kaur's final trait, her love for baking. Being a doctor is what she loves to do, but working long hours for countless days can be tiring at times and Seva Kaur likes to clear her mind after a long week by baking and being able to share her baked goods with family members, neighbors, and loved ones.
We named our princess Seva Kaur. Seva means helping others without expecting anything in return and Kaur means princess (super fitting for our episode!) So literally, Seva Kaur means "the princess who helps others without expecting anything in return". The concept of Seva is a very big part of our upbringing and one of the core beliefs of our religion Sikhism.
I had chosen my long-time friend Sidak Kaur to be my partner. We had been a part of many activities in the past including Sunday school since we were five, Bhangra (Punjabi dance) since we were 7, and even participated in the Girls on the Run 5K together. The story of Seva Kaur really hit close to home as both of us make it a goal to always help and give back to the community, both local and cultural, just like Seva Kaur. We really wanted the story to inspire young girls from all over the world and show them that being a princess is not only about dressing up and looking pretty but about making sure that everyone in your "kingdom" has been helped. Although this is true, we used elements such as the indian drape to represent that princesses can do it all - dress up, dance, spend time with the community, give back, be a doctor or lawyer or scientist, and do something they enjoy, like baking.
With the pandemic making such an impact in our lives, we decided to make our Princess, Seva Kaur, a health care worker since we cannot imagine a bigger modern-day hero than the health care workers who have been taking care of the world.
More specifically, Sidak and I have one more health issue that is very dear to us and that is cancer in women. We decided that our princess's "superpower" was going to be to cure cancer one patient at a time. Sidak's mom passed away from cancer many years ago but fought the battle very bravely. My grandmother is a breast cancer survivor and I know how horrifying this disease can be so we created a Princess who will make the lives of people like Sidak's mother and my grandmother better.
Being able to participate in a challenge like this will be one of the most incredible experiences of my life. I learned so much from the other participants not only from our episode but also from the episodes before and after the Princess episode.
I hope to see Seva Kaur become a true-to-life Princess. In the meantime, I am continuing to do seva and give back to the community that has supported me and allowed me to be able to donate my proceeds from Baked By Nivaaz to charity.
I used inspiration from our cake for the Princess Episode Launch party we hosted on August 27th, 2021. In the glass globe, I included a matcha cupcake with honey lavender buttercream with the pin we won during the Flower Challenge.