I just couldn’t help taking pictures of these traditional loaves of bread which were the bread we used to have before the advent of “Gardenia” bread. I still remember standing at the Kek Huay Tiam (Grocery Shop) while the lady sliced the load of bread for me. These were the days when grocery shops still grated coconuts on the spot and the money was kept in a plastic bucket that was hung off the ceiling.
The way I see it, there are two things that we use these loaves for which cannot be replaced by the square loaves. The first is to make Kaya Toast and the second is for wrapping ice cream. Somehow using “Gardenia” just doesn’t seem right for these two things.
But the fact is that Gardenia was so nice that it (and other brands of square loaves) soon took over the staple bread scene in Singapore. I even remember their ad campaign that Gardenia was “so good, you could even eat it on its own”. When I had my first bite of a slice of Gardenia, that was exactly what we thought. “Wow, it is really so good that I can eat it on its own!” Soon, the good old sliced bread started dissappearing from the local grocery stall, together with freshly grated coconut.
Practically, the modern square loaves tastes better and keeps longer but these loaves provide a slice of childhood memories that is hard to replace.
Jie Bakery & Confectionery