Without a doubt, one of the worst-hit industries during the pandemic is the airline industry. With air travel brought to a screeching halt and with no clear indication where it is headed, most of their employees are literally left grounded.

Idle and anxious, Anj Gadin and husband Niven are suddenly left with a lot of time on their hands. “Almost all flights were cancelled due to different travel restrictions,” she says. Anj is a flight attendant of Philippine Airlines, while Niven is a pilot. Both have been in the industry for 13 years. While they still get to work from time to time, most days they are just at home.

Like many who have been stuck indoors, the Gadins found solace in baking. “One day we were craving for cinnamon rolls, but since everything was closed we decided to bake our own,” Anj narrates. “After a few days, our craving got us to baking cheese rolls and Japanese cheese cake. We were just proud of what we were able to make so I posted it. One of our aunts saw the post and asked if she could order. I guess this was the trigger point of the Flying Apron.”

The Flying Apron is their home-based business that offers, apart from their cheese rolls, cinnamon rolls, strawberry and cream cheese puffs, ube pandesal, and Spanish rolls. They have even expanded their menu to offer pasta dishes such as truffle cream and baked macaroni.


One day we were craving for cinnamon rolls, but since everything was closed we decided to bake our own…

They did not come into this business completely blind. “I am a graduate of culinary arts,” Anj explains, “and I am really into cooking. My husband has been inclined to baking since he was a kid.” It also helped that their careers allowed them to experience different flavors during their expeditions abroad. “We made our travels to different countries our inspiration to make the pastries that we love to eat. We try to imitate the pastries and cakes that we tried in other countries,” Anj says. So far, they seem to be on point, as feedback has been mostly positive. “We are also happy that the customers love our products and that boosts our confidence more.”

As for many home-based businesses born during the pandemic, theirs was also a lucrative beginning. “When the pandemic started, we got a lot of orders everyday. We would start baking early in the morning and have it delivered after lunch since we bake it fresh. We would do that practically everyday.” But, as lockdown restrictions started to relax and more of the mainstream food businesses re-opened, their captured market also suddenly had more options. “We would get orders from time to time from our old customers but not as much as before,” says Anj. “But we are still happy that people who tried our products still order from us.”

The Flying Apron is doing well enough for the couple to even consider expanding. However, with the current situation, recruitment has become more complicated. “As much as we also want to expand our business by hiring people to make our products,” Anj points out, “we choose not to because of the current situation.”

Despite their love for their new business, the Gadins are eager to get more air time in the foreseeable future. “Yes, we really miss flying,” Anj confesses. “So whenever we get the chance to fly, we still do. We really enjoy traveling, experiencing different cultures, and interacting with different people.”

While we wait for the skies to open up, the Gadins have The Flying Apron to keep their hands and minds busy.