Chef Jason believes a good cake always makes gatherings and parties livelier. So just like Julia Child said, “A party without cake is just a meeting.”
In this blog post, we’ve asked Chef Jason Tan 8 questions so you can get to know him better.
Let us introduce Chef Jason first.
Jason shares his passion, skills and knowledge with all the participants in his Cake Making and Cake decorating class in Singapore at Palate Sensations Cooking School.
Jason Tan grew up in a small town called Tanjung Karang in Kuala Selangor, Malaysia. During his childhood, he was spoilt with the freshest seafood and local produce. In his teens, he moved to New Zealand to study. After graduating with a Diploma in Business, a Maori friend roped him in to start up a café. He started from the bottom; even washing dishes at one point! There, his love and passion for making good food were truly ignited.
Jason returned to Malaysia in 2007 to continue chasing his passion. He spent 3 years at Taylor’s University, graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality & Tourism Management. He then interned at Jones the Grocer Singapore and continued as a bar supervisor. He honed his latte art as a barista.
In 2011, Jason decided to try his hand at pastry despite having no formal pastry training. Jason began his new adventure at Dessert Cup; one of Singapore’s famed customized cake shops. Through his seven years of cake making, he progressed from a commis chef to lead a team of cake decorators. His fondant and buttercream cake decorating skills are almost entirely self-taught.
Jason truly understands the hard work and time needed to master cake decorating; something he still learns every day. He has made a cake for all kinds of celebrations. His beautiful cake creations were often featured in Her World Brides. Jason is also an avid home cook who enjoys cooking and baking for his family and friends.
With his diverse experience in the F&B industry, Jason looks forward to sharing his passion, skills and knowledge with all the participants at Palate Sensations.
What do you love about cooking/baking?
Cooking and baking help to spark joy in life. It’s the process of cooking that is therapeutic and the result brings happiness to the people who enjoy your food and cakes.
What makes you happy?
To be able to create a personalised cake for someone who enjoys the design of the cake as well as its taste.
Who is the person you most admire in the food industry?
Needless to say, it’s got to be my idol Cake Boss, aka Buddy. He is the one true reason I got myself into the pastry industry and inspired me to learn everything from scratch. To use fondant and to understand different types of modern and traditional cakes. Also to create every cake personalised to cater to everyone uniquely.
Person you would most like to cook for?
It’s got to be my family. Although my mom has always been a “clean freak” that she will want me to make sure the kitchen is spotless after cooking. Not a single drop of oil or stain must be seen or felt by her.
How would you describe your food?
For me, food should taste as good as it looks.
What do you eat? What’s your favourite dish? Why?
I love all things seafood like crabs, salmon, prawns, and mantis prawn. Maybe because I was born in a fishing village in Malaysia where we get fresh produce every day.
What was your biggest kitchen disaster?
I still remember when I was a breakfast cook in Tihei Cafe in New Zealand. I was so forgetful that I left the saute pan with oil on the stove for so long that it caught on fire. And when I tried to put the fire out by holding the pan up towards the chimney on top, the burning oil dripped down and burned my fingers. It hurt so bad. It was such a dangerous act that I won’t ever forget in my life.
If you weren’t cooking, what would you do for a living?
Accountant. It was my initial plan for my career but after I graduated in Diploma in Business in New Zealand. My job at a cafe changed my path entirely. That’s where my first interest in F&B sparked.
“Just like Julia Child said “A party without cake is just a meeting.”, good cake always makes gatherings and parties livelier. Sharing food and sweets made with the heart is always the best gift anyone can receive. I enjoy making beautiful and tasty creations from scratch. I would love to share this knowledge with like-minded people of all walks of life.” – Chef Jason Tan