Husnaa Kaka moved to the UK from Johannesburg in South Africa around three years ago, relocating to Leicester, her Mum’s home city.
Her family baked a lot at home and every Saturday was a baking day. Like many others, Husnaa got a taste for baking by trying out ideas that were trending on social media during lockdown.
Husnaa chose to refine her bakery skills by taking a course at Leicester College. She’s currently taking a Level 3 Patisserie and Confectionery course, and chose the College as “it’s easily accessible” and “very welcoming”.
This was important to Husnaa as she says that she “was shy before she joined the College” and was concerned how other people might react to her wearing a veil.
Husnaa has “enjoyed all of the course. My teachers believe in me and push me towards doing my best.”
One such example is Husnaa making it through to the final of the 2023 Student Pastry Chef of the Year competition, organised by The Chef’s Forum. She was also in the UK Young Restaurant Team of the Year competition in 2022 and made it through to the semi-finals.
She said: “I’ve learnt many different techniques during the course and that I have a talent for baking.
“I would recommend the College for other people. I’ve felt welcomed, part of everything.
“When I finish my studies, I’ll be looking to progress into a full-time job. I’m currently working at a Turkish café in Leicester making pastries, and plan to travel to Russia in the summer to learn more about pastry making there.
“My dream is to open my own café and bakery. The smell of fresh bread in the morning is just the best thing!”