The world of home-baked goods on Instagram is truly inspiring. Browsing the various accounts and feeds provides a cheerful and colourful visual experience that showcases just how skilled and creative Malaysians are.
Even more impressive are those who have started their own small businesses, combining culinary expertise with entrepreneurial spirit.
Here is a small selection of home bakers in the Klang Valley whose creations will leave you with “heart-eyes” and, should you order, will satisfy your cravings!
1. Sweet Hato
Sweet Hato was founded by Denise Teh, a lawyer who graduated in 2020 but found herself unemployed and “restless” when the movement control order was implemented.
Teh specialises in meringue, which is vanilla-flavoured and comes in various designs including a “character of the week”. Her bestsellers last year were the Disney princesses, Dumbo, and BT21 – the animated characters created by South Korean sensation BTS.
Customers can even order customised meringues, “whether it is your beloved pet or your favourite plush toy”.
As for how to best enjoy these treats, Teh recommends letting them float on their favourite beverage. “My favourite is to pair meringues with coffee, which will provide the perfect taste balance: sweet and bitter!”
2. Kek Ni
Kek Ni is run by Nini, a solo baker “with an affinity for party hats” who has always dreamt of owning a bakery.
“Since I was still looking for a job in my field, it felt like the perfect time to try,” she says of starting her home business.
Her specialties include cheesecakes, pies and macarons, the latter of which are “a fun cookie to play with, visually and tastewise”.
“Custom macarons are a fun way to celebrate with the people you love, party hats and all,” she adds.
The macaron flavours change every month, so Nini recommends ordering the Picnic Box for a taste of everything. And to match, get the Limau Pie, which is “refreshingly tart, similar to Solero lime ice cream!”
3. Donut Plan
Donut Plan‘s founders wanted to live a life that revolved around food instead of being deskbound. They first started with a micro bakery but, sadly, that didn’t pan out.
Then they found themselves being led down the donut hole.
“We thought despite the abundance of cafes in Kuala Lumpur, no one was really offering speciality donuts, unlike in the United States, Australia and elsewhere. We felt there was great potential in donuts.”
Many fry days later, Donut Plan was born; and, after a year and a half operating from home, the business has moved into a kitchen proper in Section 14, Petaling Jaya.
So what are their must-trys? For the adventurous, the Brown Butter Marmite. For classic flavours, the Vanilla Glaze. And for something zesty: the Yuzu Blueberry.
“But we always say, go with your gut! We have an extensive list of flavours rotated every week, so there’s something for everyone.”
4. Moment Wonders
Moment Wonders, founded by a retired accountant, is a home bakery that specialises in eclairs and puffs inspired by the creations of renowned chef Christophe Adam.
Only premium-quality ingredients are used, such as Niko Neko for its matcha and houjicha collections, and Callebaut for its chocolate collection.
“Our eclairs have zero preservatives, artificial flavours or colouring, while our lemon orange collection uses real orange and lemon juice.
“Everything is made from scratch, from the pastry cream to even growing our own mint leaves to decorate our minty zest eclairs.”
Perfect and lovely for any special occasion, Moment Wonders makes your precious moments even more wondrous!
5. Sugar Mummy
Sugar Mummy is a small business based in KL offering custom-made cakes, tarts, pound cakes, cupcakes and more.
Its birthday cake selections are visually stunning, with delectable flavours that will blow you away such as strawberry fresh cream, chocolate Oreo, and chocolate fresh cream.
Its bestselling pastries include macarons, raspberry cheese tarts, and lemon pound cake.
6. Bearly Cakes
Bearly Cakes is a student-run business founded in December 2020 by a high-school senior who found themselves stressed out during the pandemic.
“I turned to baking as a fun and productive way to cope. It was only natural this little hobby of mine would get amplified into a small business.”
It was also thought to be a way to gain valuable work experience, as well as raise funds for charity.
“During Ramadan last year, I started selling cookies to raise money for The Lost Food Project. I hope to be able to organise more fundraisers in this way.”
First-timers should try the apple crumble or lemon poppy-seed mini loaves, which are bestsellers and perfect for a picnic.
Other recommendations include the pineapple upside-down cake and walnut chess tarts, which are lovely for any occasion; while the chocolate fudgy crinkle cookies will surely satisfy every chocoholic.
This article was written by Tasneem Khalil for butterkicap.com.
Butterkicap is a food and culture platform and community that enables anyone to experience Malaysia through stories of its people, food and places.