Icing on the cake
Creating a Merlion cake for SG50 is something special to cake Boss star Buddy Valastro
He is famous for his cakes.
So when Italian-American celebrity baker Buddy Valastro was asked to make a special SG50 cake for New York University's Singapore Student Association's Singapore Night in April, the 38-year-old presented a unique Merlion cake.
Its creation is documented in the seventh season premiere of reality TV food series Cake Boss, which airs tonight at 9pm on TLC (StarHub Ch 427 or Singtel TV Ch 254).
The show chronicles Valastro's desire to achieve his late father's dream of making Carlo's Bake Shop a household name and features his team, which includes his mother, sisters, cousins and brothers-in-law.
"I love Singapore."
It's really exciting to be able to present this special cake and be part of Singapore's celebrations," Valastro told M over the phone from New Jersey.
"I had the chance to visit Singapore last year for work and I was very inspired by the food and culture, so it was very fun to make the cake."
The opportunity to make an SG50 cake was very special to Valastro, who said the cake is his token of gratitude to "all the people who were very kind to me when I was in your beautiful city".
He used flavours such as pineapple and coconut for his own spin on Singapore flavours.
"This is probably one of the best cakes we did all season. Just a visual of it is amazing!" he said.
Valastro, who lives by the rule of 60 per cent taste and 40 per cent decoration, was glad his Merlion cake impressed.
"I like it when people see my cakes and say they're beautiful, and the reaction on their faces after tasting the cakes... that's the best," he said.
"But it's got to taste good first before you can do more from the thematic standpoint.
"Then you need to have the 'wow' factor in how the cake looks.
"Lastly, you need to construct it well because you can make a great cake and everything else, but if it falls down when you try to move it, then you'll have to start over."
Valastro is thinking of setting up shop here in the near future.
"We're potentially going to be putting a bakery in Singapore, so we're excited about that," he said.
When that happens, Singapore will be the first country outside of the US to have a Carlo's Bake Shop, which has 11 outlets in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Nevada.