Home Sweet Home is a column dedicated to the talented people baking up a storm at home.
As a pastry chef, Melissa Ong has quite the colourful resume. She has clocked stints in top eateries in Singapore and around the world – for some three years, Melissa trained in the kitchens of the now-closed Restaurant André, Whitegrass, and even one-Michelin-starred Ralae in Copenhagen. While equally adept at using both the stove and the oven, Melissa quickly found out that her passion lies with creating sweet treats and bakes. “I personally feel that pastry-making is more intricate, and requires a higher level of precision,” she shares. “While physically tiring, I feel truly happy when baking.”
Unfortunately, with the ongoing global pandemic, Melissa’s full-time job was affected. But a desire to continue doing what she loved fuelled the resilient baker to kickstart her own home-based business. Without the commitments of being tied down to a job, Melissa knew that she wanted to use this opportunity to translate her experiences and memories into her own bakes. So in July 2020, Melissa started No Name Bake Store.
It’s a name that holds special meaning for the baker. “We called ourselves No Name bake Store as I did not wish to set a boundary,” says Melissa. “I want to be free to utilise all the knowledge and experiences that I have gained and stretch my creativity.”
“I want to offer bakes without any limitations,” she adds.
On the bake store’s debut menu is the Pastry Box V.1 ($30) – a selection of four distinctly different pastries that Melissa has created. Inside, there’s a fluffy kaya butter Japanese cake roll, blueberry and lemon curd tart, creamy cheesecake that comes topped with brownie cubes, and dark chocolate cake crowned with crunchy hazelnut praline. “It was created to showcase different tastes and textures,” she explains. “I drew inspiration from the places I’ve worked at, the experiences again, and my travels.”
Also on the menu, and a personal favourite of Melissa’s, is the selection of roll cakes. Japanese-inspired sponge cake ($24) comes rolled with fresh fruits and flavours, including mango, Nama chocolate, coconut caramel, and maple cream cheese. “It might be made up of just a basic sponge and cream, but sometimes, the simplest things can be the most difficult to bake,” she shares.
Almost everything at No Name Bake Store is made from scratch; Kaya, Speculoos cookie spread, praline, Nama chocolates, and more are prepped fresh and without the use of preservatives. It’s a labour of love, one that Melissa insists on doing to ensure maximum quality.
She adds: “I count myself fortunate that I can love what I do, and do what I love.”
HOW TO ORDER Drop Melissa a message over at @nonamebakestore, or fill up the Google Form here. Self-collection is available at Kovan, and island-delivery rates range from $5 to $12.