As I mentioned once before, the concept of home baking is still relatively new to Korea or at least compared to a lot of western countries. The apartments (at least older ones) certainly were not made to accommodate full-sized ovens and sometimes even fridges or other large appliance, as is the case with mine! I live in Gangnam which is one of (if not the most) expensive area to live in Seoul. Therefore the kitchen I have right now is the smallest I’ve ever had at about 4×5 square feet with about 1×2 feet of counter space. As you can imagine this makes baking a little difficult and I find myself day dreaming of the day I have a full sized kitchen again with a decent amount of counter space and a normal oven to bake comfortably in. I know I’ll have those things one day so for now I just have to remind myself to be appreciative of what I do have!
In Seoul, that means access to baking supplies! My first year living in Korea I lived in Daegu, a smaller city in southeast Korea where it is extremeelllyy hard to find baking supplies. There’s literally only one or two baking stores that I know of there but both were small and although they did have ingredients you couldn’t find elsewhere they were far from where I lived and very expensive. Even the big box department stores have very very little in the way of baking supplies and ingredients and they’re generally quite expensive, poor quality, and very limited. Living in Seoul has been amazing because I have access to so much more! My favourite market here is called Bangsan Market which is part of a larger market in central Seoul (called Dongdaemun.) Bangsan is basically like a wholesale market for baking supplies. It has not only ingredients but supplies and materials for cooking and baking and I’m sure is the place most cafes and restaurants get their inventory. There are multi-level stores that stock just about every size and shape of take out boxes, bags, cake boxes, ribbon, stickers, twist ties, chocolate moulds, cute plastic cutlery, etc. etc. etc.
Today is Children’s Day in Korea and since it’s a National Holiday here and I had the day off, I ventured to Bangsan to stock up on much needed supplies for a market coming up this weekend.
These cupcake boxes are for take aways and can hold 4. There’s 5 boxes in one pack so 20 cupcakes x3 packs = 60 cupcakes. Not too bad for approximately $18.
These are small plastic sealable bags (perfect for a single slice of something) and are pretty cheap at 200 for approximately $2.
My favourite cake boxes! One for approximately $2 but these are worth it as they’re sturdy and can hold a ton of cupcakes.
More cupcake boxes that hold 6 each. Approximately $1.50 each.
And of course some ingredients. These are all expensive but are no matter which way I buy them (online or otherwise.) Altogether these were about $45 so the splurge of my day but %100 necessary. I make my own almond milk and needed unroasted almonds for it; the market is one of the few places I can get nice unroasted almonds. The vanilla and nutmeg I need for obvious reasons and lately I’ve been using pecans as a topping for my pumpkin cupcakes. The vanilla runs approximately $7/59 ml. I think I might be able to get this cheaper online so it’s something I need to look into as I use so much of it. The nutmeg is approximately $7 as well which is probably scary expensive compared to back home but again, I can’t make pumpkin spice cake without it! 😛
And that’s it for my baking market haul. I’m curious, how much do these things cost where you live? Do you have a baking supply market like we do here, and how do the prices compare?