Thursday, June 23, 2011

entering my third year.....three wonderful years.....

Three years ago, June 23rd or was it 22nd? in 2008, I delivered my first oreo chocolate cheesecake, then after, hubby dearest saw me baking cupcakes, he asked me to bake 100 cupcakes for him. I had only just baked ( or tried to bake ) 12 cupcakes, even so, I had never, ever, made buttercream icing before, so how on earth was I going to bake him the 100 cupcakes and with some deco?
That was me , three years ago with zero knowledge on cake decorating, never before held a piping bag with nozzle and with buttercream icing in it, let alone colurful icing, and now three years later, I heard my daughter said this to me the other night:

" I want to be like you, mama, a cake decorator"
( this, in her own words and sentence and language) yes, we do speak English at home , not because we do not speak Malay or Kelantanese or Kedah dialect, but, because that is one of the ways for me to train her to be fluent in that particular language .( and I do need to practise myself, takut berkarat nanti )

Don't you want to be an architect like Abah?

abah buat apa?

Abah designs buildings, houses, etc

No, I want to be a cake decorator :-)

Three years ago I would not have dreamt of hearing this conversation with my seven year old daughter. Cake decorating was never, had never, been in my career list. But I guess, it is in me all these time, my passion for drawing, my passion for baking , compiling and copying recipes from TV programmes, from magazines, even from inflight magazine during a flight, and my passion for writing, combine all three and that's how Zue's oven aka cekmekzue came to life. From late june 2008, to 2009, 2010 and now 2011. Before I know it, I had been baking and decorating countless number of cakes and cupcakes and brownies, not just using the buttercream icing, but royal icing, fondant, gumpaste,, making figurines, novelty cakes and hantaran set too! not forgetting hampers and fruit baskets too!

Ever heard of the phrase, "Time flies when you are having fun",? Three fun years had gone by and this month, marks the third year , me, spending most of my time , having fun, in my little kitchen, mixing butter and sugar,sifting flour with baking powder, beating the eggs, kneading and rolling fondant, making figurines and flowers, mixing colours in the buttercream icing and decorating cakes and cupcakes , brownies and all those scrumptious, delectable,goodies .

It seems like yesterday that I made this "Powerpuff Girl" cake for my daughter's 5th birthday in 2009 . My first ever free hand drawing cartoon character direct on the cake, not using the tracing method, nor the edible image , just drew ( redah je, as I would say ) on the cake at 5.30 am!

and also these colourful piping jellies deco on these cupcakes. At this time, I did not know that there were classes organised out there for beginners and amateurs like me. I only discovered about them nine months after I started Zue's Oven , nine months aiy, kalau orang pregnant, dah bersalin dah.....hehe......

After a while, I had baked chocolate cakes, cheesecakes, oreo chocolate cheesecake and the plain bake, cupcakes ( vanila.chocolate, just to name a few flavours ) , biskut batik, etc, i then discovered about this marble cheese brownies. The reason why it is called 'marble' cheese brownies is perhaps because of the 'marbly' design on top but, no, not me, I tried something different. After baking a few MCBs, I suddenly came across this pattern, and thought hmmm, why didn't I just draw this on the cheese brownies instead of the normal 'marble' effect and hence, my MCB never look the same again, I have lost count of the number of designs i had created on the MCBs and this particular one was the 'first'.of my non-marble design.

from orders for birthdays, or hari raya hamper, came the order for 'hantaran' and I think this was my first cupcake 'hantaran' set, my earlier buttercream roses, a hantaran engagement set

then came another, and another, and another, and until today i am still making them, hantaran cakes, hantaran cupcakes, for weddings, engagements, etc.....

sometimes I do receive special request from my customers, wishing for something special and different for their loved ones, where their message would be translated via cakes and cupcakes. This very tiny black and white heart box for a cupcake (2009) was made especially for a lady in Penang, for her hubby in alor Star, for his birthday. I didn't know how and where I got this idea from but I thought it would be sweet to send her heart to him, via this fondant heart in a small fondant box.

I attended several classes in these three years, from professional and non professional teachers but equally talented , these classes that I went to, are money worth spent. Idid learn a few things via the youtube before I discovered these classes but I believe in getting a proper technique or training from 'sifu's out there, once you have the basic, , you just explore, and improvised, sometimes these knowledge are not obtainable via youtube or the cake decorating books alone,
These figurines were my first bride and groom figurines made ( my first figurine was the Snow white cake ) fo a lady in Putrajaya, as a gift for someone in alor star..

After these figurines, came the pink couple, the purple couple, another white couple, Tinkerlina, Rossetta, just to name a few.

my cupcake deco has also evolved from just using the buttercream, to using fondant. They are simply stunning and elegant as hantaran or door gifts

When i first started,three years ago, cupcakes were a craze, everywhere you turn, you see cupcakes, cupcakes for birthdays, cupcakes for weddings, for anniversaries, for everything and anything, the 'in' thing at that time, just like the 'in' thing now is the iphone, ipad, ipod, or whatever 'i' there is..................................

Me, dunno about the craze, but I got smitten with cupcakes, beautifully, colourfully decorated cupcakes when I stumbled upon a blog by a lady in Australia. Her creations are just beautiful and mesmerising that I fell in love with it instantly!

from full fondant deco purple and white set and pink and white set, ( 2010)

to teddies bride and groom (2011)

to cookies 'hantaran' set(2011)

and wedding cakes( 2010), my brother's weding cake

and dinosaur birthday cupcakes(2010) , the love of a wife to her husnamd

to red velvet with cream cheese frosting cupcakes( June 2011)

or red velvet 'camera lens' cake (2010)

to 'bowling' chocolate cake ( 2011)

or f"Liverpool ' half ball vanilla cake (2011) from a lady in chennai

and Detective Conan drawing on fondant.(2011)

It seems like yesterday, june 23rd 2008, that I first delivered my oreo chocolate cheesecake to my first customer!

Three wonderful years! In these three years, I met many people from all walks of life, online and offline, make new friends, met other bakers and cake decorators, other bloggers, all because of the love for sweet, delicious, scrumptious, and delectable cakes and cookies. I appreciate their allowing me to enter their lives through my cakes, for their birthdays, their children's birthdays, their parents, inlaws, brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces, friends, bosses, colleagues,and many more, not just o celebrate or remembering their birthdays, but other occasions too, anniversaries, weddings, engagement, some to say 'thank you', some to say 'sorry' and some just simply to indulge...............

For these opportunities, i thank you all , from the bottom of my heart for your continuous and endless support, without which I might not be entering my third year and I hope that I will encounter many more joyous and wonderful years ahead, making you smile, shriek, happy, satisfied with my cakes and cookies.

Zue's Oven will not be standing here today if not for the 110 or maybe 200% support from my family, my other better half and my three beautiful kids ( they can be quite a handful at times but they are still beautiful )
and for that I heart you.........

happy 3rd Anniversary Zue's Oven!


  1. Hi Zue, all I can say is you are an original, an outstanding lady in every which way.
    Ha ha, speak England at home....for me I have forgotten my Malay, but now reading my visitors Malay in my blog, I am picking up again.
    Only trouble is the present bahasa today so different to what I learned in the '50s.

    Now semua pakai shortcut bahasa, buat saya lintang pukang, ha ha.
    You got a great daughter there, zue.
    Have fun, and keep on decorating.

  2. COngratulations Zue dearest!

    You have come a long way in a short span of time. I think you did a lot in three years.

    This is perhaps my 6th year in this biz. The first 4 years I was unguided, meddling with sugar and flour on my own. Two years ago baru I managed to catapult myself to US for my formal cert. The PME was my first exposure to decorating world and you know what? I think I learnt more on my own. The PME just concludes my knowledge. But I was blessed to be given the opportunity and I am thankful for the people involved for the trust.

    Congratulations again and wishing you many more anniversaries to come.


  3. Hello Lee!
    Thank you for the beautiful words. I still think that I am still a long way to go to being outstanding, still much to learn and am still learning as I go along.will continue doing with what I am passionate about, with the continuous support from my family, friends and relatives, customers ,everyone and anyone, near and far,
    great daughters and son I have and a wonderful and supportive husband to top it all, plus great friends , cyber or non cyber who continue giving me words of encouragement , who make my world beautiful and colourful, wouldn't have wanted it any other way!

    thank you Lee for your constant visit and always cheer me up with your broken malay and will always keep a song in my heart!

    take care and have a beautiful day Lee!

  4. Salam Wiz,
    always a joy to have you around and thank you for the wish.three years wiz, time flies when you were having fun and fun it was indeed, fun in discovering new things, new method, fun in making mistakes, fun in one of those bad 'cake ' day moments, fun in making figurines, fun in visiting other cake decorators' blogs and see their wonderful creations and one of them is you.
    Yes it had been fun and I hope more fun years in store for me ahead. You are fortunate enough to be able to catspult yourself to the States for your formal cert, and you know what I'd like Wiz? to catapult myself to Paris! but for the time being, I am happy and blessed to surround myself with sugar, flour and everything nice everyday!
    thank you for the beautiful wish Wiz, you take care and wishing you more beautiful years ahead of you too!

  5. Happy 3rd Anniversary to Zue's Oven!
    I'm happy to be part of it. Thanks for baking my BDay cake for two consecutive years.
    All the best!

  6. Oh... here's the latest addition :-)

  7. Dear Wicked Warhol,
    thank you and like wise, I am also glad and privileged to be part of your special day, not just yours but your children too......but I have yet to mkae one for Mrs Wicked Warhol, wink wink......hint hint......:-). She always come up with new ideas and challenges for me, such a creative lady, and I'd like to thank her too for being supportive over these years.
    Thanx again! Have a beautiful day!

  8. and yes, I ahve seen them, a good photographer always know which angle is the best to shoot a picture.
    and just to let you know that I did drop by a couple of times in your 'Whackiness' blog and those mushrooms look simply beautiful captured by your camera lenses!
    to quote your wife, " Have a Wickedly Wicked Warholly Day"!

  9. Hi Zue, hey, you missing in action. How you? Everything okay....
    By the way, I love that TD pic. Who is that in the pic with the TD, the tall girl and small girl?
    Love that pic, well taken.

  10. Hello Lee! A visit from you givs a warm start for a cold rainy thursday morning here in Alor Star. As usual, morning routine, sent kids to school and now back at my workstation to finish off th bride and groom figurine for a wedding hantaran cake and also the deco for carrot walnut cupcakes, also for hantaran.
    Not missing, just not in the right switch for loading pictures and writing, a lot on my mind lately and yesterday my father undergone an operation and my sister told me that he's doing fine.
    I am fine, thanx Lee for asking, I do miss writing and visitng you, will do that soon once everything is in order,
    BTW, that TD pic, the 'tall' girl, not so tall lah Lee, barely five foot tall:-) yours truly....and the small girl, the future 'cake decorator'. Pic taken by hubby , well, he managed to make me look 'tall', hehe...
    nice of you to drop by Lee, better get back to my cakes, once i start writing, difficult to stop, am having carrot walnut cupcake with cream cheese frosting for breakfast!
    Ciao Lee and have a beautiful night, it's 8 pm, you are probably having your dinner, bon appetit!
    take care!

  11. Zue yg cemerlang...congratulations!

  12. thank you tearose for the 'cemerlang ' wish and hope to be more cemerlang in the future.