MARY SWEETS | FILLING THE CRAVE
I remember coming to Asia the first time and being culture food shocked with all the new flavors. I love trying new foods but one thing that hit me hard was the lack of sweetness in desserts. The first place I lived in Asia was Japan. While there, I remember eating my first piece of cake and wondering what happened to the sweetness. Later on, when I returned back to the states, I realized that my sugar range was totally destroyed. Items that I could eat easily, I could no longer handle. This was an issue in America but I quickly gained it back (thanks to Krispy Kream’s help as well as others).
I would later go back to Asia to work on a few projects here in Shenzhen quickly realizing the sugar tolerance here was also very low. Every now and then I could find an actual sweet dessert at Artisans or a spot doing a special. Still, I always craved a good brownie, cookie or cake that was local and not requiring a trip to Hong Kong.
MARY SWEETS | WESTERN DESSERTS DONE RIGHT
That said, I was really excited when I started seeing advertising for Mary Sweets. It seemed out of nowhere these guys were posting enticing shots of desserts on our Wechat food groups. Still, I was hesitant as not all desserts that look sweet are actually sweet in China. Later on, I began hearing from other SZR writers how much they either loved the desserts or couldn’t handle the sweetness. Both are a plus for people like me, so the reviewer in me decided to give it a try.
Along with my friend and Chinese writer Paiyu, we tried quite a bit so let’s jump in:
FAST SHIPPING ALL OVER CHINA | CAKE INTACT
One thing that I was really surprised about was the fact that the cakes came to me very fast and intact. Usually, when you’re ordering a dessert, you expect it to be in pieces or at least have a few breaks or tears just due to woes of transportation. On top of it all – Shenzhen is a super hot and humid area and my cakes were left outside in a mailbox area. Still, they came cold and intact so my hats off to Mary Sweets for fast delivery. Mary Sweets is located in Huizhou city and shipped my cake around 8 pm the day before. I got it really fast and boxed. Opening the box, I found the cakes in insulation bags surrounded by ice packs. Inside of the insulation bag, they were packaged in a hard plastic case and wrapped with plastic wrap.
Although they are in Huizhou, they ship all over China via 24 hour shipping
COOKIES LIKE GRANDMOTHER USED TO MAKE
If you are a cookie lover, I would definitely recommend trying the cookies here. These are not like your English “biscuits” but are very soft and chewy. On top of that, they were sweet and really hit the spot. I tried the chocolate chip (gotta go traditional) and the Oreo cookie. The unique thing about the Oreo cookie was that it was a classic cookie with real Oreos crumbled in. That said, you’re technically eating two cookies at once which is a cool idea. The chocolate chip cookies were amazing in my opinion. They will definitely send you looking for milk or tea but the soft texture and the level of sweetness was perfect for me. I feel like if you’re local, you may be a tad overwhelmed by it but to my shock Paiyu also loved it.
KILLER BROWNIES DONE RIGHT
There is an assortment of brownies that are supplied by Mary Sweets but my personal favorite was the Oreo brownie as well as the red velvet. These are two of my favorite dessert flavors all around, to be honest. Cookies and brownies both are made from the same ingredients. The main difference is the ratio of flour and liquid/fat ratio. If a brownie is not extremely chewy and soft, I consider it more of a cookie. Cookies have a higher amount of flour and are made from a dough whereas brownies are made from a batter and contain higher liquid/fat. That said, usually, when I have a “brownie” in Shenzhen, it falls into my cookie category because it’s tough and tends to crumble when bit. The brownies here were definitely done right, even being shipped from another city. They arrived soft, very chewy and balanced perfectly (texture, sweetness wise). Altogether, there were 6 flavors in the variety pack.
TRADITIONAL CAKES DONE WESTERN STYLE
When you’ve really had cakes done western style, there is always a degree of disappointment when trying it at other bakeries. I don’t know how many bakeries told me about how great their “New York” cheesecake is only to try it and totally be underwhelmed by the flavor (or lack of cheese altogether). You can rest assured that a cake from Mary Sweets will live up to its name.
The first cake that I tried (my personal favorite) was the Red Velvet Cake.
I want to give an understanding of velvet cakes. The whole reason that they are called “velvet” cakes is that in the early 1920s-1940s, cocoa was used to soften the flour of cakes making them have more of a smooth texture (kinda a middle ground between cheesecake and regular cake). Because of this texture, they became known as “velvet” cakes. Today we have red velvet cupcakes, pancakes, etc but if ranking a red velvet cake, make sure you pay attention to the texture. Today many people will use beet juice or dyes to give it a strong red color but totally miss the texture part.
Saying all of that, the red velvet had a creamy and smooth texture so it won me over. The cream cheese icing was very good as well and was topped with nuts and what type of red sugar (im still unsure of exactly what it was).
The carrot cake also had a similar icing. I honestly liked this cake the most out of all three cakes that I tried. This is mainly because it was not too overwhelmingly sweet and I loved the mixture of textures with the added nuts and carrots. I remember bringing a carrot cake out for my local friends to try on my birthday. They were very uneasy about a “vegetable” cake which was pretty funny. This did not have the taste of a veggie cake but tend to have a good balance of sweetness and spices. I would say that this type of carrot cake is softer of a texture then the chunky carrot cake I’m used to.
DEATH BY CHOCOLATE | CHOCOLATE CAKE BY MARY SWEETS
The strongest case that I’ve tried from Mary Sweets was definitely the chocolate cake. I mean “strongest” in terms of sweetness. This cake was definitely a chocolate death two times over. It was a rich chocolate cake covered in an even more rich chocolate frosting. I was definitely going for a drink with this one but was definitely living the moment eating this cake. I was actually shocked to see many locals who were around during our video shoot love this as well.
Needed at More Restaurants
If you are a restaurant and want to offer Western-style desserts, they offer wholesale pricing. I am plugging this in only because I really want to see more western style desserts at the more expat driven restaurants in the Shenzhen area. Some local people will complain about the sweetness, but in our tasting with locals, all of them seemed to really enjoy the flavors so it’s a win-win.
If you wish to order from Mary Sweets, you need to click the QR code below for their menu all deliveries are done nationwide through SF delivery.
Shuikou Huicheng District, Huizhou City, Guangdong Province