Happy JA Day

Happy JA Day.

A new term minted by Jeanius. I kind of like how it sounds. It’s less focused on the birthday bit of things and a little more on us just sharing this day together, and most importantly, sharing the love with others.

charity bake (2)charity bake (1)charity bake (3)I do love the whole idea of a charity bake. In fact, I’ve always enjoyed those sessions we had when charity was involved. Don’t get me wrong, I have lots of fun during our usual gatherings with games and all. But when we get involved in activities like baking, spending time and playing with children, it engages everyone on the same level and I think that’s great!

I know it wasn’t easy planning for this session, there were many last minute changes and coordinating this whole gathering was pretty challenging. I’m so extremely appreciative that this actually happened eventually.

charity bake (5)charity bake (6)charity bake (4)Firstly, I have never done a baking demo in front of anyone before so I’d forget I had to “teach” the process. I was basically just putting the ingredients together and my fans would be asking what is that? How much to add? How do you mix? How long? And I’d go, oh I just go by feel. Verdict: My feel was wrong, I added too much milk into the first batch. Blame it on first-time-teacher-nerves!?

Secondly, I’m not a big fan of foreign ovens. I actually took this recipe and baked it, and each time I tweaked the ingredients until I was pleased with it. When I was happy with the final recipe, I baked it another few more times over different batches to make sure it would always be consistent. Going into a new kitchen with new ovens, I had to test it out again. I definitely didn’t have the luxury of time to bake 10 batches before we went ahead with baking proper. So yes, I’m always squatting in front of the ovens to just watch the muffins, especially when the first tray came out wrong.

charity bake (8)charity bake (7)Baking by feel obviously differed for every individual. So we decided the best option would be that I portion out everything for everyone. When everything got worked out, production went really fast. We just baked till all the ingredients ran out. So over 5 hours, using 6 ovens, we made 400 muffins.

charity bake (9)charity bake (10)Muffins were then individually gift wrapped and tagged. All this love (muffins and a copy of my book “Sol’s World: Somebody to Love”) was then delivered to Gracehaven, The Haven and Willing Hearts.

The thing about baking (for me), is that it is pretty much “Mood Dependent”. My baked goods always do turn out fantastic when I’m in a good mood and even good recipes can turn into disasters when it’s a bad day. I guess when I say I go by feel, it really comes down to that. So I believe, that as we had fun baking, we also had it in our hearts to want to share this love with others, this love will make your muffins wonderful.

Special thanks to The Eureka Cooking Lab for letting us use the space, showing us so much patience and love. Thank you for everything!

charity bake (12)charity bake (11)The most beautiful cake to date. A 3D globe cake with me on top of the world. And a special photo book with compilations of well wishes from fans around the world. I read every single word in there, thank you all so much!

Thank you for spending this day with me. Thank you for all the love! I hope this day brings you joy as well. Happy JA Day to all of us.