Top Stories

Fast, queue, feast

LONG WAIT: Queues are seen at several Muslim food outlets during Ramadan. At Fluff Bakery, a line forms every day at least two hours before it opens.


    Jul 25, 2014

    Fast, queue, feast

    THIS month has been a feasting month as much as a fasting one.

    And this can be seen in the long queues at several Muslim food outlets.

    At Fluff Bakery in Bugis, for instance, a queue forms every day at least two hours before the cupcake shop opens at 5pm.

    Many of these customers are Muslims who have to abstain from food and water from sunrise to sunset during Ramadan.

    When My Paper visited the store on Tuesday, at about 5pm, there were about 60 people in line - and that is considered a slow day, by the shop's standards.

    Shaiha Shahri was third-time lucky, ending up first in line at 3.30pm. She had tried twice before, with no luck.

    Even though she was on the way at about the same time the first time, an Instagram update announced that the cupcakes were sold out. The second time, the queue was so long that she decided not to wait.

    The pharmacist, who is on leave for Hari Raya Puasa, which falls on Monday, had travelled from Yishun to the shop in Jalan Pisang.

    "It'll be my first time having it. I want to know why people are raving about it," she said.

    Another customer waiting in line with three of her friends was Nurul As'syiqin Mohd Tulos, 21. They came prepared - with umbrellas and sunglasses.

    The students had rushed over after lessons ended.

    While queues at the shop have been common since it opened in November, owner Syazanna Syaira Md Suhimi, was surprised by the demand. There have been about 200 people in queue during Ramadan, up from the usual 120.

    "I think it is because cupcakes are easy to carry around and share when people are going to break fast in a group," the 27-year-old said.

    She had to hire three additional bakers to the original four to deal with the increase in demand.

    Another sweet treat that has attracted a line even in the humid environment is the Chubby Churros stall at the Geylang Serai Hari Raya bazaar.

    A queue at the stall is a daily affair. Sofhian Jaafar, who runs the stall with his friends, said that he had to buy an additional fryer to reduce the usual 30-minute waiting time.

    Savoury treats have been equally popular, with long queues at Aspirasi chicken rice stall at Seah Im food centre at Harbourfront.

    Owner Zainudin Sajat said that queues are seen only during the fasting month. Interestingly, he says not all of them know why they are queueing.

    He said with a laugh: "The Chinese also see the queue and join in!"