Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Home bakers turned entrepreneurs!

Hello everybody!

Once again, it's Wine and Dine Wednesday and that means, we're going to be talking about food. I am beyond ecstatic to feature some of the home bakers I have personally known whose talents, creativity and tongues, I must say, are extraordinarily gifted. They have the sweet tooth which in turn, had led them to becoming entrepreneurs in their own right!
"TIME just stops when I bake." - Malyn
Let me start off with a good friend of mine, Mrs. Malyn Santos. She is known for her genuine compassion for her friends, her beauty inside and out and her sweetness towards everybody.

One of the things she could never live without would be chocolates. And that being said, she possesses a strong tactile sense that will surely give a "pang" when it comes to baking her own adorable cakes.

Every time, our circle of friends would gather up, we go giddy-yap when we are warned to make room for Malyn's dessert. We all look forward to it.

Personally, I find Malyn, fun to hang out with, sincere as a friend and has that classic sense of style. She is an epitome of "your girl"! and this reflects in the cakes that she bakes. Once you get a taste of it, there she leaves a mark that will surely make you day dreaming a week later to experience it all over again. I still remember when she made me a Banana Cream Cheese Pie with Cinnamon for my birthday two years ago, it was just a delight! The picture above was for her boyfriend (then, now husband...), Giles, since he loves Angry Birds and the one below was for his birthday, a Red Velvet Cake. I loved that too!
Malyn's Pumpkin roll - one of her bests and firsts.
 At first, she wasn't comfortable baking cakes for money since baking is her own therapy. She never wanted it to be a sort of business but every now and then, if close friends need it, like I did one time, she considers so. I know baking takes a lot of time so with much respect, I purchased one from her. Plus, her husband has a catering service, MTSC (, so sometimes, she gets in charge with the dessert. Check out the link above for bookings and orders.

Next off is Gisele Guarin who had never failed in surprising her clients with her creative taste. It seems like whatever you request from her, she can actually do it! She is very much known for how she stylizes her fondant cakes. Of course, the initial design would come from the requests of those who order from her. But how, it turns out, is something that she calls her own little "secret".

Just a little bit of understanding when making fondant cakes... uhm! It takes a lot of work! FONDANT, according to Wikipedia, is one of the several kinds of icing-like substances used to decorate or sculpt pastries. It is popularly used to decorate wedding cakes but it depends on the baker's familiarity to it. It can empower a baker to be more than productive when sealing a cake's presentation with fondant.

So, how do I know Mrs. Abejero?

One thing that binds us? We were part of the Salinggawi Dance Troupe way back in college in the Philippines and I still remember being her 2nd base in training for a pyramid one Summer back in those cheerleading days. To make the story short, I transferred schools to finish as a nurse and she fulfilled commercial dancing with Powerdance.

TIGERS - mascot for our our uni, UST
I didn't hear from her for a long time but this small world worked it out for the two of us to work in Disney together, (not to mention that I have worked with her mom too in Far Eastern University). We held a reunion amongst Salinggawi dancers and it was the pot-luck type. She brought this beautifully designed cake with a glittery fondant that amazed everybody. It tasted so good too and from then on, people had known her for her hands' greatness with fondants. Here are some of her works.

Ela's beautifully designed birthday cake with Chocolate filling.
Cathy's baby shower as she expects Enik - with chocolate filling too.
the most recent one that she baked for Silver's 2nd Birthday - Madhatter's Tea Par-tea
I ordered Chocolate cake with Hogan's tattoo for its design for his bday last '11.
Honestly, I don't know how she juggles everything. She is a dance captain, a principal dancer, a mother of two, a very supportive wife, part of the 7-time Champion in Rowing this year, Team Mushu, a party planner, on-the-spot confidante and an entrepreneur (baking business). Whew! I'm pretty sure, there are still a lot of things on the side such as doing dance competitions, bringing her daughter to a dance class, making sure that everything runs smoothly, at home, at work and a lot more. But yet again, G never fails except when her oven gives up. Ha! That cannot even keep up with this superwoman. Don't hesitate to place your orders though. Feel free to place your comments below if you are interested to order from her.

Jarvey Castillo, now part of the Festival of the Lion King Team, also hacks up customers thru his everyday supply of Red Velvet, Oreo Cheesecake and Carrot cupcakes. I, for one, had been munching on them while I was there in the theatre break room to do light duty. I first had a taste of the Carrot Cake he baked when he was still part of the parade team. It felt sinful indulging on that Cream Cheese for a cupcake topper but what the heck! I'm no chocolate lover! Surely I can give that to myself every once in a while, or every chance that I get (which was every afternoon). WIKIPEDIA defined a Cupcake as a small cake designed to serve one person, which may be baked in a small thin paper or aluminum cup. As with larger cakes, icing and other cake decorations, such as sprinkles, may be applied. A cupcake may not hurt at all but I am guilty in eating more than one. 
Just like me, I know how people loved Jarvey's Carrot Cake so we actually had put his business up officially during our Holiday Celebration within the Parade Team. Actually, it wasn't just about his cupcakes but the food that he prepares is just but amazing. He pours a lot of effort when having cook outs. He loves purchasing cooking materials. He just finds it enjoyable and satisfying when he sees his loved ones are fed well. He loves being productive and actually getting paid with what he enjoys doing... and doing best.
This is just how he presents what he cooked.
Let me feature this particular cake that he did last April. I love how he bathes his moist spongy loaves with that zesty icing. This deserves to be posted up in the newest food craze called Food Porn. Just look at that luscious pool of chocolate icing just for Ela. As per presentation, it was alluring and hard to ignore. I do white chocolates so I got saved from sinning. Hahaha! But according to the people who were drooling just before having a bite, it was mindblowing. 
For orders of Jarvey's cakes, you can contact Lhelai Centeno, his personal assistant thru Facebook. With regard to personal information, I would like to encourage you to message him personally or yet again, leave a comment with your email or contact details after reading this post further.

Themed dessert tables are now a hit most especially when Net's Kitchen had done a very good job at it. Noelle, famously known as Net had started this because of her passion for cooking. She had a culinary course taken here in Hong Kong and it had been awhile that I got abreast with how she's doing. The last thing I know was she was offered a scholarship abroad to learn more about cooking. Outstanding products have continuously amazed customers and clients from different parts of the world. Most recent achievement was getting invited to be in Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre last August 2013. Here are just but a few of my favorites. 

This one I recently attended, was for Malyn's bridal shower.

Despicable Me Cake
Superman Themed Dessert Table for Uno Zoleta
Circus Birthday Theme: Kaelee's turns 1
Rapunzel Theme
1st Birthday of Maiko, her daughter

Renee's 1st Birthday
I love the personalized cupcakes.
capturing Buddha munching on Net's Kitchen cupcake for Moerice's birthday party
Isaac's 1st Birthday Party, Theme: LUAU
Ms. Bongiwe's sassy cake
Tiamson - Vega Wedding Cake

Nate-Nate's Birthday Party, Theme: Disney's CARS
These wonderfully themed cakes speak for themselves. I need not elaborate but then there's still something to share that I'm truly excited about. For now, you can like their facebook page and you can place your orders there too. Here's the link,, but soon, their website will be established and it would be easier for all of you to place your orders online. Pre-designing your own cake before actually making an order is the best part. I can't wait!

Lastly, let me introduce to you the sister of my good friend Cathy, who had been given the chance to travel a lot to experience authentic, varied and wide array of goodies, treats and desserts. Andre Cheung, a budding home baker who had made it to my wedding loots found her inspiration from her sister whom she trusts the most, Cathy.

Andre Cheung
Coconut Macaroons
This smart gal who paved her way to Hong Kong University developed her passion for baking when she had the chance to live with her twin cousins. Every chance they get, they bond over this hobby until such time that it inspired her to take up Business Administration aiming to put up her own bake shop someday.

 As she looses track of time in baking, she finds herself being a perfectionist aiming for customer satisfaction when she complies to their orders. I felt instantly in love with her coconut macaroons because she gives justice to the word "home-made" as she sprinkles her own magic to the products she makes. All of her specialties are featured in her own blog: Follow her thru this link, pinterest and facebook and there she feels free sharing the recipe that she follows. All of these treats that I've posted, I've tried personally. Yet again, I was just able to try the white chocolate covered lollipops.

Party Cake Pops
Cupcakes by: Andre
Horlicks Serradura (aka Macau Sawdust Pudding)
As I interviewed her online, one question popped to mind: 

Kyte: Some of your posts on your blog are your firsts. Did you ever find it difficult to do it on your own? Did it always come out perfectly the first time time you did it? 

Andre: I bake what I wanted to make/love to eat. I will usually keep a to-bake-list in my iPhone notes/mac book. Save recipes to favourites or Pin to pinterest. So mostly the desserts in my blog are my firsts. I seldom find it difficult because I enjoy being alone in the kitchen, working with my cake/cookie batter without any distractions or comments. (I don’t like to be disturbed). But for some occasions when I needed to bake a large batch of cakes or what, I will ask my sister for help (who I trust the most). For some basic recipes like cookies/brownies/muffins/cupcakes will usually come out perfectly. However, I remembered the first time I attempted at French macaroons, it went hollowed for the first batch.

There you go folks, these people are outstanding but they have their share of failures too. Never stop pushing yourself to the limit. You may never know up what you can do until you try.

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