People always tell me they admire my entrepreneurship and ambition as an online store owner, but really, I know that I am nothing compared to the sheer brilliance and talent of so many passionate ones around me, those who are truly chasing after their dreams and pursuing what they love.
In our tiny and immensely competitive society that’s so tightly governed by propriety, so driven by elite education, paper certificates and high salaries as a measure of success, breaking out of the mould is almost unthinkable.
I feel rather sad about this.. Because I’ve never been one to follow the conventional route: I love Music, I love Art. (Guess what I found out via this website: The Great Singapore Rat Race? Apparently, art and music earns you the lowest salaries across the board, and with the lowest employment rate. 🙁 How lamentable..)
I detest Mathematics and Science, pursuing a diploma in Design despite an O Level results with five distinctions and a L1R5 of 10 points. I am one of few amongst my peers without a university degree and proper day job, but I know that I’ve never been happier, doing what I love, and being surrounded by like-minded people. There has never been any regret on my part, dropping out of the “rat race”, unfettered by the so-called society norms.
That is why I was uttered delighted to know that a friend of mine, Sarah, has finally (and very recently) set up her very own bakery: Maple & Market! Sarah is an absolutely talented young lady, with a huge passion for baking, teaching and all things beautiful! She has been baking and conducting lessons from home previously, as well as selling her bakes at pop-up stores and providing beautiful dessert/sweets table set-ups for her friends and acquaintances.
Maple & Market just opened its doors two weeks ago, and what’s more, it’s just a short drive away from my office, teehee. I foresee that I’ll be dropping in for yummy bakes and cakes on a regular basis! 😀
Maple & Market is located under a HDB block, but don’t let that faze you.. It must be one of the prettiest bakeries I’ve seen on our little island! 🙂 And parking wasn’t an issue with the open space HDB car park lots just behind the block.
I know how much of a perfectionist Sarah is, so I wasn’t surprised to see how every tiny little nook and cranny had been designed with so much love, down to the minute details like the letter box, and a hand-made “Opening Hours” signage board.
The bakery is pretty tiny, so I wouldn’t suggest coming down in a huge group of more than 4, you might have difficulty locating seats! There are only two sitting spots, and both sit maybe 4-6 people, maximum.
Despite it being a weekday afternoon, Maple & Market was bustling with customers, with the deliciously inviting aroma of baking wafting out from the open concept kitchen! Very friendly and personable staff who attended to us with smiles on their faces! 😀 I always love places with great service. Makes me feel happier immediately!
Cake display! Every single cake looked so gorgeous and delicious, I had trouble deciding which to shortlist.. 🙁 By the way, Sarah actually spent months in Japan, attending Japanese baking classes, and I think the influence shows up in her bakes. They are very rustic and simply put together, yet absolutely beautiful.
The above are just a few of the available bakes, there was a modest but well-varied selection which had us spoilt for choice.
We got ourselves seated next to the window, and the food on our table drew the stares of many curious passer-bys. (So maybe opt for a seat at the other table, if you prefer to eat in peace without people staring at you just a few inches away. Ahaha) Anyone looking into this bakery would be tempted to step in!
Here’s Min’s hot mocha. No amazing latte art on this one, but it tasted great, apparently!
As I’ve mentioned, I am a tea drinker, and also I forgot to try the mocha for myself (oops) so I can’t give you the verdict on this. Sarah is quite the avid coffee drinker, and I do know that the coffee beans are from Nylon Coffee!
Recently tried Tiong Bahru Bakery’s croissant and have been overwhelmed with croissant cravings. Had to order this one and I thought it was really delicious too! It’s not as flaky or as crisp as TB’s version, but is softer and more doughy on the inside, which I like as well 😀 And that yummy buttery taste.. Was so good on its own without any additional jam/butter on it!
This cake looked so pretty, we ordered it straight away! And I really really liked it, the sponge cake was dense but light at the same time (how is that possible??) and slightly crumbly, with fresh fruit fillings, that complemented the cake so well! You know those fruit cakes from the neighborhood bakery you used to get for your birthday as a kid? This kind of brings back memories of that well-loved fruit cake, except that it tastes better! 😀
I got this tea on recommendation by the staff. Don’t like my teas too floral nor fruity, so this Earl Grey with just a hint of lavender went great with the sweet food that we ordered! Sipping hot tea is the life.. 😀 (YZ would say I am becoming a Tai-Tai but I beg to disagree)
Don’t you just adore the presentation of this simple slice of banana walnut loaf, on a paper dollie and old-fashioned metal plate? This was actually one of the items we left untouched because we ordered tooooo much, but I brought it home, warmed it up a little in my toaster, and had it for breakfast the following day! Not too sweet, with huge chunks of walnuts and the bread was coarse and flavorful.
I actually forgot to take an individual shot of the Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake ($6) because we were so eager to tuck into the food, I completely missed it out! That rarely happens, so you can tell how damn excited I was. HAHAHA.
The Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake was incredibly tall, with dense chocolate layers sandwiched by a rich and smooth peanut butter ganache! I think I might like the Red Velvet better (I will definitely order that on my next visit) because this one was richness overload, what with the chocolate sponge cake and peanut butter cream. Delicious in small amounts, though!
This open space is also where Sarah conducts baking classes (on the weekends!) and which I have been dying to attend, but haven’t yet found a chance ;(
Congratulations again, my dear! 😀 And thank you for having us! ❤
I love this paragraph from Sarah’s blog:
For everyone who is pursuing their dream… believe in yourself, work hard and somehow, the universe will aid you in fulfilling your dream. Do not lose faith nor doubt your convictions, be the best that you can be, but at the same time, don’t forget to reflect, learn from mistakes and be a better person.
– Sarah’s Loft
Maple & Market is a wonderful testimony that dreams do come true, as well as a reminder and encouragement to each and every one of us that passion, love and creativity are still very much alive 🙂
Just one last thing: You really need to try this Bacon Maple Cupcake ($3.50)! Bought this to bring back home and it was so yummy! The caramelized bacon tasted like bak kwa, and was a surprisingly good combination with the sweet cupcake base which had a light cinnamon taste to it. YZ loved it 🙂
Effort is when you hand stamp your logo on the paper bags used. Yes?
Please do pay Maple & Market a visit, especially if you’re an Eastie: there’s no excuse! (PS. It’s located super near the famous Old Airport Road Hawker Centre!) Affordable prices, so much love put into the beautiful presentation and delicious bakes. I know I’d definitely be back.
Maple & Market Bakery
34 Cassia Crescent, #01-82
Singapore, Singapore 390034
Tues – Fri: 12:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Sat – Sun: 10:00 am – 10:00 pm
On a separate note, I hope the long weekend has been treating everyone well! Can’t believe it is Sunday already, that was too quick for me 🙁 I had a great week at work and also spending lots of time with my loved ones, my family, boyfriend, and friends! Life is good like this 🙂
My hardworking minions spent the entire week organizing and packing our stocks for the Kissjane Sale (that happened today) and also in preparing for the new dot com website.. It is coming along really soon and I couldn’t be more excited about it! Ahhhhhhh. Also confirmed lots of new manufactured designs that are just so pretty I can’t wait for them to arrive! ❤
Enjoy the last week of May, everyone! 🙂