Craving healthier delights

Chew (in white) getting help from her husband Jeffery Lee, 35, and their daughters (from right) Edelyn, four, and Elayna, six, to roll the paste filling for the Shanghai mooncakes (inset) at their home in Jalan Gangsa, George Town. — Photos: CHAN BOON KAI/The Star

HOMEMADE goods are becoming increasingly popular amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Demand has increased for innovative homemade mooncakes this upcoming Mid-Autumn Festival.

Housewife Angie Lee, 35, who makes jelly mooncake at home, said the movement control order (MCO) brought in many customers and helped boost her sale of the delicacy.

“People are looking for homemade and healthier alternatives of late, probably due to concerns over their health and well-being.

“Last year, I sold homemade jelly mooncakes too but the orders were not as many as this year.

“The MCO this year really brought in many customers for my mooncakes. So far, I’ve received over 25 orders, ” she said at her home in Tanjung Tokong, Penang, recently.

Lee, who initially started making jelly mooncakes for her own family consumption, said she uses fresh fruits for her mooncake mix and fruit puree to glaze her jelly mooncakes.

“I use agar-agar, pandan leaves, and fresh fruits like strawberries, oranges, dragon fruit and blue-berries to make my jelly mooncakes.

“This is because I personally do not like traditional mooncakes as I find some of the fillings a bit too sweet so I started customising my mooncakes and flavours.

“With traditional mooncakes, I only like the skin but it is hard to find a desirable combination of flavours at shops selling commercial mooncakes.

“Now that I am making them myself, I can customise my flavours and texture, ” she said.

Sales executive Bobo Chew, 34, who makes Shanghai mooncakes, said she started baking at home as she wanted to learn new things.

“I learned how to make dim sum and ginger tea at first, and eventually tried making mooncakes.

“Who knew that they would be a hit among my family and friends? They started placing orders to buy my Shanghai mooncakes, ” she said at her home in Jalan Gangsa, Green Lane.

Chew, who just started learning how to bake, said she was surprised that there was such a demand for home-baked goods.

“I think many are opting for made-to-order goods nowadays.

“This is because we can help them customise the flavours.

“Besides, many homemade delicacies have no preservatives, and so they are a healthier choice, ” she added.

Finance executive Mirage Gan, 27, who ordered 20 boxes of homemade snow skin mooncakes, said she preferred homemade mooncakes as they are less sweet.

“I like that we get to customise our orders, and that the mooncakes are only made after we order.

“Even though the shelf life of the product is shorter, it feels like a healthier option as we can ensure that we buy from home bakers who use premium ingredients, ” she said.

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