These bakers and cooks do the business at home
Out of their home kitchens, these bakers and cooks serve up udang serai and sweet treats like Basque burnt cheesecake
While 2020 has been a difficult year, it has also been transformative for so many.
It forced many to think of creative ways to earn extra income or indulge in their passion.
It produced a group of home-based bakers and cooks, often with Instagram as their store front - just place your order there.
As a tribute to Singapore's 55th birthday, here are five (and a half) to check out if you are feeling patriotic.
Garlic dip ($10)
I am obsessed with Arve Deli's signature vegan and keto-friendly garlic sauce and use it on everything - on bread, with plain rice, even to marinate chicken.
Ari Roy, who moved from Melbourne to Singapore to be with his wife, tested the market last Christmas and has not looked back since. Five months and 2,000 orders later, they have added two more sauces to the menu (the roasted beetroot hummus is a killer), along with herb pitas and a roasted capsicum antipasto.
Udang serai ($12, serves two)
Adel Chong Wittchen's great-grandmother passed down a family recipe for udang serai (or prawn lemongrass sambal rice), and now she has convinced her mother Janice Yeo to cook and sell it.
Open up the box and the aromas hit you - fresh, bright and comforting. I love that the flavours are delicate and homely.
E-mail email@example.com to place your orders.
Bika Ambon ($35)
Bika ambon is a dessert that takes tremendous effort to get that spongy but springy texture.
But when Yew baked this and started to get rave reviews from friends, she and her boyfriend started TheHoneyCombCake in April. To date, they have sold more than 250 cakes.
Their version comes in two flavours - original and orange. Original is mainly coconut and pandan, while orange zest is added to the latter.
Basque burnt cheesecake ($19)
The Basque burnt cheesecake was one of the big food trends, and here is one from an actual Spaniard.
Biten Garcia came up with a version that is small (meant for two), with less sugar but still creamy.
Get the tasting gift box with three flavours (traditional, mascarpone and smoked sea salt, speculoos crumble) to try them all, but if you must pick just one, go for the mascarpone and smoked sea salt.
The OG ($10.50 for box of three)
In these tumultuous times, one of the things I found comfort in was a chocolate cookie. And one of the most comforting was The OG from SCXM Bakes by Sherilyn Chia.
I love the gooey-ness of the soft cookie, and how that dollop of chocolate just seems to spread inside the mouth. Eat it sparingly and with strong black and bitter coffee because life is about balance anyway.
The "half" part
I'm giving this a special mention because pastry chef Maira Yeo (@maira.yeo) has temporarily stopped her Covid Bakes Lah side hustle because she is back in the kitchen at Cloudstreet.
Her cookies - especially the CCB and the oatmeal - were so good.
And bless her heart, she started this bake sale as a donation drive, and raised $6,300 for HealthServe and the Umbrella Initiatives Foundation.