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My Journey As a Homebaker

I was sorting out some of my cake photos, revamping the layout of the "website" and also reviewing my current cake menu. Which reminded me of the days when I just started baking out of home! :)

I started to develop strong liking for baking, understanding recipes and looking at cake designs, after making a cake for my daughter's first birthday celebration. To me, it's just a simple mummy's dream to bake a cake + some cupcakes for my daughter's birthday - that simple.

 At that time, we were still waiting for our house to be ready, and renting a flat outside. Our landlord doesn't have any oven, but he does have an oven toaster, and so did we.

So the cake and cupcakes for my daughter's first birthday were baked using 2 oven toasters lol.

My husband then commented that if I could bake a frosted cake using oven toaster, I could do better using a real oven! And that sparked my interest in baking (like, wow, I can?! Really?!).

This was the cake we had for the celebration with close friends.
6" rosette cake with lychee rose cake underneath. Not too bad right? Lol...
This was the 2nd frosted cake I've made - ever.

Chocolate mousse cake for separate celebration at my in-laws' place.
I think I overwhipped the cream and I had a hard time smoothing it over the cake layers lol.
It's really quite ugly hahaha!

The Start

So, I sort of started my home baking "business" after my daughter's first birthday, and that was around the start of 2015.

I didn't really know what direction I should take, just that I knew I wanted to start selling cakes and pastries. Sometimes we also get comments from friends who said that this is "illegal", which was also what I thought, until I googled for the HDB home based small business scheme. This scheme allows us to bake on small scale from home, for sale to friends and relatives. Never been so thankful for schemes set up by the government :p

Initially, I just wanted to sell daily bakes to busy mummies for their families. Like you know, cookies, muffins, cupcakes etc. This idea stemmed from the fact that I find commercial bakeries bakes quite "commercialised" with many artificial additives.

However this idea did not really work out lol. I guess it's because most of these daily muffins or cookies would probably be a last minute purchase, and it would be more convenient to purchase from stores that offer these readily.

Then, came 2 friends who asked me to bake a cake and muffins for their celebration - they offer to buy from me! I was (am, still!) so thankful to them for having the confidence in me, despite no portfolio to show then!

And who would know that my daughter's cake was only the 2nd/3rd frosted cake I have ever made in my life then! Lol.. I didn't know where did I get the courage from, but I accepted the orders.

This was the strawberry shortcake! Love the Korean strawberries hehe.

And since I was really afraid that the cake wouldn't turn out well, I decided to do some trials before the actual date. I think I did 2 trials, and then did the actual one with trembling hands and a prayerful heart lol.

Thank God for answered prayers! I knew I couldn't do the above cake, with soft whipped cream, really! So when my friend returned with good review for the cake, I was really overjoyed.

And the first few muffins I have done for sale:

Customised Cakes

And then in between while I did some cupcakes and CNY cookies, 1 of my church friends approached me to do a cake for her son's first birthday - a fondant cake!

While I had covered a dummy cake with fondant before, I was not sure if I could do it on a real cake. I tried to reject the order, however my friend's husband just asked me to try it out. Honestly, I don't know how they have the confidence in me lol...

It took me a lot of stress to complete the order, and I was glad they were happy with it! Their guests also came to me with compliments at the party - to which I am so thankful to God for the opportunity!

It was also my very first cake with 2D fondant toppers :)

Meri-Meri Dino cake - Vanilla butter cake + lemon curd + SMBC

I still cringe at the elephant skin now hehe..

From there, I got a request for a 2-tier fondant cake! Again, I didn't know where I've gotten the courage from - I accepted the order lol!

I was so happy with the sharp edges, and was so glad it turned out well! The brand of the fondant indeed does make a difference :)

And of course, before this, I had several times of trials and failures.

I started to also research on cake flavours, and made samples of what cakes I would like (hahaha!).

So from here, things progressed, and I have gotten more requests from friends.

 My first rainbow cake + 3D fondant topper!

Birthday cake + cupcakes for Cherry's little one.

Rainbow cookies for Vinvola

Lego Man cake for Hello Lobang


Now, when I tell people that I consider myself as a novice in baking, and that I only started making frosted and fondant cakes in 2015, most of them didn't believe me! I take that as a compliment for the bakes I have done :)

I am also most happy with the sharp and neat edges of my cakes. But of course, there were times when I lost my standard, especially when I was tired or pregnant. I usually would offer something else to make up for that, because I know that birthday celebrations are really important!

I am also happy that I have tried doing this homebaking stint because I love making children happy when they love the cakes, cupcakes or cookies! It feels really good especially when friends came back telling me that they enjoyed the bakes, and returned with more orders.

(What could I have done to deserve this?! I thank God for that! :))

And now while I am waiting for the arrival of my 2nd daughter, I am taking a break.

In between, I actually felt quite burnt out, and was considering to just stop baking entirely. Though I felt quite wasted to give up this "skill", I think the husband was quite happy to know of this consideration :(

However, following my last order a couple of weeks ago, my neighbour gave me such a good review that I am considering to continue to bake after my delivery in Sept.

Which is why I am brainstorming on expanding the menu for party packs and petite sized items. I might also be adding party printables on my Etsy store as well.

Well.... There are really some things in life we have a calling for, right?! :)

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