Macarons are mysterious things. Available in all colours of the rainbow – and in enough varieties to rival the great Willy Wonka’s marvelous factory – we couldn’t help being drawn to Shiberty Bakes and their pretty display of macarons for tomorrow’s BoConcept Marketplace. Come sit with us as we sneak in a few questions (and even hustled an offer for Nookmag readers!) with Shiberty Bake’s own Jessica Loh.
While busy preparing for tomorrow’s event, we are grateful Jessica has time to spare to answer a few questions about her passion for baking. First off, of course, is the traditional question of how everything began. Although there was no sob story about a young girl who dropped her beloved pastry on the floor and then decided to make her own pastry, Jessica’s story was intriguing all the same as she told us about how it all started out as a casual hobby with boxed cake mixes more than 5 years ago.
“I found the activity challenging and rather therapeutic, and nothing smells quite as heavenly as warm, fresh bakes out of the oven! I couldn’t even cook instant noodles for myself back then, so I went on a mission to prove to my family & partner that I could be domesticated.. and now, I guess I am!”
Despite being such a success in the kitchen though, Jessica revealed that even she used to burn and under-bake cakes all the time, wasting a lot of time and resources in the process, due to her lack of experience. “It would be extremely frustrating, but as time went by, it became easier to judge when a cake is properly baked!”, she informed us.
Interested in these so-called cakes she used to burn, we asked what her favourite thing to bake was, as surely, every baker would have a favourite to fall back on when inspiration runs out.
“Interesting question.” she muses, telling us that she has never asked herself that. “I guess I love baking cakes for my loved ones’ special occasions the most, because it always comes from the heart.”
As we nod our approval, we asked Jessica what was the biggest life lesson she took away from the kitchen. Her response? “You don’t always have to follow the rules to succeed.”
Telling us that she always treats recipes as a basic guideline, Jessica emphasised that it was more important to improvise according to the baker’s intuition and preferences, which usually leads her to end up with a better product, more suited to her taste buds then if she were to follow the basic recipe and instructions 100%.
She also added that the same thing applies to life: “You have to trust yourself. You know what works for you the best. Take other people’s advice into consideration, but follow your own heart. Don’t be afraid to break or bend the rules a little.” She ends by telling us that she would rather give it her all than spend the next X amount of years wondering “What If?“.
Thus, we decided to take a chance and ask “What if you were to offer Nookmag readers a perk during this market?”
That’s when, we are pleased to say, Jessica replied, “Just for Nookmag readers, enjoy a macaron (any flavor available that day) on the house when you purchase any item on the menu.”
Thanks, Jessica! We really couldn’t ask for more.
To meet Jessica herself, head on down to the BoConcept marketplace tomorrow at Paragon from 11am to 7pm, and grab yourself a macaron!