Baker Feature: Aisyah from SJ's Yummy Treats
by Jumaiyah Mahathir Apr 14, 2017
Sometimes, you can tell that some bakes are going to be good, just by talking to the bakers themselves. Kak Sya stumbled upon our website and decided to investigate. Upon her emails to us, we decided to meet up to see what she has in store, and how we can assist her. Instead of meeting us outside, she invited us over to her lovely home. Normally, when bakers write in to us, they are pretty cautious - and that is very understandable, I mean, we don't really know each other, right? So it's seldom that people invite us to their homes, without even speaking with us first over the phone.
When we arrived, we felt comfortable almost right away. As usual, we would open our conversations with a short explanation of what we are trying to do with halalfoodhunt.com. After that, comes my favourite part: It's the baker's turn to tell their stories. Sometimes the stories are good, but sometimes the stories will break our hearts. When Kak Sya began her story about her baking journey, I listened quietly, patiently, and very intently. Though this part of her story may not be mine to share, I think it is enough to summarise it this way: The team at halalfoodhunt, we know where we come from, and we recognise that we are nobody, and in her eyes, we could very well be like one of those people that gave her empty promises in the past. So... I really wasn't sure if she would really end up as one of our affiliate bakers.
Ondeh-ondeh Cupcakes by SJ's Yummy Treats - Available for Purchase on www.halalfoodhunt.co[/caption] Despite the heart breaking story she recollected, we also saw something else in this family that we visited. Throughout the whole time we were there, it wasn't just her that we were speaking with. And, it wasn't just her in the house. Her family was around her, and the one especially clarifying all the terms of contract with us, was her husband. They may not have realised it, but we clearly saw it. It was how they looked at each other before they answered our questions. It was how he talked about her and their children. It was the sincerity, and sureness in his eyes, that his wife's bakes were the best in the world. Kak Sya had a husband that adores her, and is protective of her. More importantly, he was ever so supportive of Kak Sya's baking passion and business. And for a fleeting moment, we felt the courage that Kak Sya had in order to move forward despite all obstacles. So we probed more into Kak Sya's choice of deciding to pursue and perfect her skills in the art of baking. At one point in her life, she did have a job like the most of us. She was an admin officer, and after that she changed gears and decided to be an assistant teacher for a short while. While she loved hanging out with the kids at her job, it wasn't long before she noticed that in every single job she was in, there was a routine, and that was the bone she picked with a full time job. In her words, "She couldn't find her groove". I craved for challenges and loved to see happy faces, thats where baking came into the picture.
With Kak Sya, her recipes and skills are passed down, between and among her family of bakers. So, we know that it has been refined quite a bit before it got to how good it is today. Even with a family of bakers, she wanted to pursue this one step further. She went on to learn from among the more famous of the bakers in our community including Chef Siti Mastura for bread and pastries. When naming her teachers, she lovingly includes Mdm Norsini from whom she learnt about cakes and cake decorating skills at Al-Ansar Mosque, and then later continued learning from her at Sugarcraft Academy. She also learnt from Chef Tania and Mdm Tan whom she met at several networking sessions.
The secret ingredient are love and passion, makes the bakes taste oh so... great..! Baking makes me feel me! I love to see my family, friends and those near me feels happy when I bake for them, baking make me express my creativity, makes me feel relaxed and makes me feel satisfaction. After much thought and at the same seek guidance for Allah, 2008 I got serious with baking and start to take orders.
I do really hope that one day, I am able to achieve one step further insyaAllah, I know that success is never easy, but insyaAllah with will and hard work, success will be with me someday. Aamin
- Aisyah, SJ's Yummy Treats
Just like most of our bakers, we are really comfortable with SJ's Yummy Treats as one of the brands we are representing, because we know that with Kak Sya, her baking is through and through an art that she wants to master. This is an affair that is close to her family's heart. And, sometimes, that love spills over to us. We can feel it, and for sure, we can taste it. Indeed, it is heartwarming to see someone like Kak Sya to pursue her passion & what makes her happy. We especially loved how she made her career decisions, while firmly having her family in mind, striking a balance between her responsibilities to her family, and her ambitions in life. Even though I personally have not met her since our first encounter, I remember the image of her etched in my mind - jovial, always smiling, determined and most of all, she seemed contented with her life and her current pursuit. InsyaAllah, one day I may achieve that for myself too.
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