Once the dazzling capital of ancient Persia, Esfahan is still known for its unmatched beauty, Islamic architecture and picturesque sights. However, on the other side of the world, a young baker supported by the SSI IgniteAbility initiative has elevated the name of his hometown to new horizons, as Esfahan Sweets introduces traditional Persian sweet delights to the streets of Sydney.
Mehradad Mohammodian is the owner of this Marrickville –based bakery and is a connoisseur in Iranian traditional pastries and sweets.
“I’ve been baking Iranian traditional sweets and pastries since I was eight years old, when I started helping my grandfather at his own bakery back in Esfahan,” Mr Mohammodian said.
“When I grew up, I continued to run the family business for 15 years, until I moved here in 2013.”
Mr Mohammodian arrived in to Australia by himself, with no family or friends waiting for him in his new country. To dispel the loneliness, he decided to invest all his time and effort in working hard to start a new business. In 2015, he established Esfahan Sweets.
“Although I started my business two years ago, I’m having trouble finding more customers and opportunities, and this is where the IgniteAbility team are supporting me.”
“I meet once a week with my IgniteAbility facilitator and we assess what we can do to expand my business. Currently, we’re working on new ways of packaging for my sweets and finding more markets to trade at. They’re very good people, I’m super happy.”
Mr Mohammodian says his sweets and pastries are special because none else makes them in Australia and because he has adapted them to the tastebuds of Sydneysiders, making them low sugar, low fat and vegan.
“I gave my pastries to my Australian friends to try but their feedback was that they were too sweet. I realised that not only what people like, but also the ingredients taste different here, so I have adapted my recipes to suit my my new country.”
Mr Mohammodian spent many hours testing new ingredients, quantities, giving them to his local friends to try and repeating the process again until he found the right balance to start selling them to the public.
You can find out more about Esfahan Sweets, check out photos of the pastries and make order on its Facebook page.