Twinkies, the treacly junk food you loved as a child (mostly because your mom refused to let you eat them), have been riddled with drama in recent years, from the perilous bankruptcy of their parent company, Hostess, in 2012, to their triumphant return to the market when the brand was acquired a year later. But it’s fair to say they're officially making a comeback now, as evidenced by their newly extended shelf life of 26 days, the most recent deep-fried reincarnation, and these “cakies”: homemade artisanal Twinkies from the kitchen of Jae NYC Eats, which you can get conveniently delivered to your apartment.
Unlike the original Twinkies, cakies are made fresh by Janice de Castro, a marketing and communications director-turned-trendsetting pastry chef based in Queens. What started out as a joke -- her daughter gave her a Twinkies baking mold after Hostess declared bankruptcy, as a consolation prize for the loss of the classic childhood snack -- quickly gained traction. “Eventually we tried it out one day,” de Castro recalls. “Our first flavor was chocolate matcha. My daughter brought them to school with her, and everyone loved it.”
Jae NYC Eats offers a variety of dressed-up flavors: maple bacon rum, jackfruit with Fruity Pebbles, bananas Foster with salted caramel rum (de Castro’s personal favorite), rose lemon with macadamia nuts, ube, pandan with coconut, and more. “All of our flavors are a culmination of our experiences and what we see in the world,” she says. “We’re of Filipino origin, so some of these ingredients are used in Filipino desserts; while others like the rose lemon with macadamia remind us of old Entenmann's pastries.”
Right now, storefront-less Jae NYC Eats is delivery-only, servicing the five boroughs, selling wholesale to restaurants, catering private events, and doing food market pop-ups. You can track it down via its website to find upcoming pop-ups and events.