Native to Pakistan, Shazeen Ashraf was born to speech and hearing-impaired parents who devoted their lives to build a perfect life. “I always knew my life was different than others as it wasn’t only my parent’s responsibility to support me, but I had to equally support them every step of the way. Being the only child, I always tried to share their responsibilities to take a load off their shoulders. In a way, I find myself extremely lucky that I was able to build a career from mere passion, and today, I am able to support them in every possible way,” Ashraf says. Her challenges have fueled Ashraf to create her culinary journey that began in 2016. During this year, she opened her kitchen doors to welcome dessert lovers into the realm of exclusive flavors and designs. With Ashraf’s drive, she started Sweets By Shazeen.
Ashraf has always been passionate about innovating and designing though she wasn’t always an ardent baker. From a young age, she was inclined towards art and dreamt of being a fashion designer. However, life had better plans that led to a different form of art through sweets. Her zeal for creativity inspired her to invest in skills and capabilities to create awe-inspiring forms of art. “I never knew that I would illustrate my creativity on the soft and sweet layers of cake and mouth-watering and glamorous dessert tables. Nevertheless, I firmly believed fate had the best stored for me, and this led me to my true calling in life,” Ashraf explains.
It is interesting that Ashraf had never baked in her life until she moved to the United States. When she arrived to her new home, Ashraf took her first step as a baker. Hailing from the family of excellent chefs and confectioners had a big impact on influencing Ashraf to walk this road. She was impressed and fascinated by their art and how her family had put together foods that captivated taste buds. “I was lucky to experience the magical process behind the scenes, and this intrigued me to adopt baking as a hobby. However, it didn’t take long for this hobby to transition into a profession as my recipes become more popular among family and friends. This inspired me to share my passions and recipes with the world to captivate and fascinate as many people as possible,” Ashraf recalls. Today, she creates gorgeous wedding cakes, glamorous dessert tables, and exquisite little treats through her business, Sweets By Shazeen. Some of her specialties include sweet tooth jars consisting of gulab jamun cheesecakes along with vanilla cake soaked in coconut milk.
Baking is not just a profession for Ashraf, it is much more than that. “I believe an empty pan is like a blank canvas where I can illustrate my creativity to create something truly exceptional. It is a form of art, and I have always been inspired by the idea of illustrating my love for creativity,” Ashraf says.
With approximately five years of experience, Ashraf has made over 900 cakes and over 6,500 mini desserts. Ashraf’s confectionary treats have been featured in over 200 dessert tables to date and she aims to add sweetness to many more events in the future.