When planning our Super Bowl party this Sunday, hot Buffalo wings may be a staple on the menu, but for some Potomac residents, the wings will come in the form of Buffalo-spiced cupcakes topped with blue cheese.
Nina Deva — the 24-year-old owner of Brownie Bakes, a local online shop featuring sweet and savory cupcakes, blondies and brownies — has a passion for baking and cupcakes and is featuring a special menu this Sunday.
Her most popular cupcakes are Red Velvet, but she changes the look for special events and holidays. This Sunday, her traditional Red Velvet cupcakes will please Packers fans: They will be green, and the cream cheese frosting will be topped with yellow sprinkles.
Don’t worry Steelers fans. Deva is preparing a black and white cupcake — a chocolate and vanilla swirled cake topped with vanilla buttercream frosting and Steelers sprinkles.
Other unique flavors for a game day party include the tequila lime cupcake, beer and chocolate cupcake, buffalo blue cupcake, jalapeño popper cupcake and fiesta corn cupcake — all specials for Super Bowl Sunday.
Deva said other flavors popular with customers are the S'mores cupcakes (cinnamon graham cake with marshmallow cream filling and a milk chocolate butter cream frosting), Peanut Butter and Jelly cupcakes (vanilla cake, jelly filling and a peanut butter frosting) and a Pumpkin Spice cupcake.
Although it might appear that Deva is a little young to be successfully selling such sophisticated treats, don't let her age fool you. She has already been baking for 12 years.
She admits her early kitchen experiments didn't add up to much — just bowls of flour with some chocolate thrown in.
“I always felt the kitchen was a place to experiment and get creative,” Deva said.
By the time Deva was 16, she was making fudge, shaped cakes and cookies and watching the Food Network with an intensity not usually found in a girl her age.
Deva contemplated going to law school after graduating from New York University in 2008, said her mother, Rama Deva; however, Deva said during this period in her life she was more interested in frequent trips to Whole Foods for supplies and ingredients.
After graduation, Deva moved back to her home in Potomac and began to develop the line of sweet and savory cupcakes that would soon be the basis for Brownie Bakes.
“At first, my husband and I were very disappointed that Nina had postponed her plans of going to law school. But, with her creativity and passion, she has shown us that she has created a successful product. We are proud of her,” Rama said.
Deva's friends are not at all surprised that she turned her passion into a business.
“Nina has always had such a good time in the kitchen, it only made sense for her to turn it into a career,” said Josh Cohen, one of Deva’s friends.
“She was already showcasing brilliant baked items to her friends for any occasion she could think of.”
With Valentine's Day around the corner, she is gearing up for this sweet holiday with new flavors such as a Strawberry Champagne, Chocolate Red Wine, Red Velvet Cinnamon, Raspberry Almond and Chocolate Hazelnut.
Of course, she still will offer the traditional flavors, Vanilla, Chocolate, Carrot Cake, Key Lime. All cupcakes, except those with fillings, come in two sizes, traditional and mini.
Minimum orders are a dozen and she will deliver for a $5 charge within the Washington, D.C., metro-area. She takes custom orders and is currently taking orders for Valentine's Day. For more information e-mail her at email@example.com or call at 301-717-2660.