A Lunar New 12 months pop-up launched this Kansas City baker’s organization. Now, she has a complete agenda | KCUR 89.3

When Yuei Costello baked her 1st cake, it was out of necessity. It was 2020 and she was living in Chanthaburi, Thailand. Her cousin was finding married and for the reason that of the pandemic, there were being no businesses out there to make her wedding day cake. With only a 7 days of exercise, she produced a tiered cake for a lot more than 150 people. She says baking turned a interest following that.

“I assisted my aunt with management for a vacation resort and at that time, during the pandemic, there was almost nothing to do,” Costello suggests. “So, I just discovered some thing to do and it was fun… but I didn’t assume it was likely to be a company at all.”

In August of 2021, Costello moved to Kansas Metropolis from her indigenous Thailand. She married her partner, Patrick, whom she met 14 yrs earlier though doing the job as an au pair in the U.S., that October. Costello baked the products for their wedding, also.

But Costello’s hobby commenced to transform into a residing when Cafe Cà Phê hosted its Lunar New Calendar year celebration in 2022. That is where the pair released Mooyuei Baker, her new Thai bakery. Mooyuei is a blend of the Thai phrase for pig and her name — she displays a pig on her pop-up tables future to her indication.

“That was the initially kick-off for me mainly because I didn’t know what I was heading to do,” Costello, who returned to Cafe Cà Phê for this year’s celebration, states. “I made Thai-fashion cakes: orange cake, chocolate cake and Thai tea cake. After that I check out to merge (flavors) much more. We have another one we simply call foi thong, like a pandan cake with sweet egg floss. I try out to make a thing far more Thai to let folks see how it is.”

Individual-sized containers of purple ube and orange cakes line a table next to whoopie pies. On a shelf above them is a layered dessert.

Savannah Hawley-Bates


KCUR 89.3

Costello loves to experiment with new flavors. Apart from Ube and Thai Orange cakes, which are her staples, Costello stocked her table with ube whoopie pies, Biscoff cheesecake, banoffee layered dessert, black sesame cookies and sugar cookies.

Mixing Thai and American flavors

Costello says she enjoys combining Thai flavors and techniques with common American baked products. Several of her desserts use chiffon cake as the foundation to preserve them gentle and ethereal. She would make them all by hand in her residence kitchen area devoid of machines. Costello, who utilised to desire about creating exhibit cakes, stated she works to make just about every dessert an specific art piece.

Her products are “soft, not as well sweet, not way too mad for sugar” — contrary to numerous American pastries — due to the fact Costello claims she would like men and women to consume the full issue in a person sitting.

Costello’s staples are her orange and ube cakes that she delivers to the numerous pop-ups she participates in. But Patrick has a specialty far too — black sesame cookies.

“From the commencing, she would always remain up much, a great deal later on than I did,” Patrick suggests. “And ever given that she started off performing this, I’ve also stayed up a great deal later on and just assisted place factors in bags and print out signs and sort of the coming up with things. But I make the black sesame cookies — that’s my contribution.”

Costello is frequently thinking of new flavors and desserts to add to her rotation. She’s not too long ago additional a banoffee Oreo dessert (bananas, chocolate, caramel, Oreo and whipped cream layered in a particular dish), biscoff cheesecake and ube whoopie pies.

The self-taught baker has also been working on mastering sugar cookies.

“I normally say, like, ‘I hate it, but I make it,’” Costello states. “I just like to attract (types) and it is pleasurable. But they get time, a lot, for the reason that if you do all the things by hand, you have to wait to draw an additional layer on the best.”

Costello designed rabbit and paper lover decorated sugar cookies for this year’s Lunar New Calendar year gatherings. The baker is collaborating in two pop-ups this weekend and created hundreds of desserts for every single. At the Saturday occasion, her sugar cookies bought-out in a lot less than two hours.

Costello’s return to Cafe Cà Phê’s function this year was more than a celebration of Lunar New Year — she also marked one particular yr in company.

To celebrate, she handed out hóngbāo — red envelopes ordinarily loaded with funds and specified on Lunar New Yr — with low cost playing cards inside of.

Costello’s Instagram next, exactly where she conducts most of her business enterprise, has exponentially developed in the yr given that her 1st pop-up. She hopes to finally open up her have storefront.

For now, while, she’s happy to keep active with a entire pop-up timetable, providing at cafes like Cafe Cà Phê and Gocha and satisfying tailor made orders.

“I never ever say no to pop-ups,” she explained. “I feel like it is really exciting to obstacle myself to consider to get quite a few menus at the exact time and like to see people today and say hello. Since I feel people here are constantly great.”

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