I've been wheat free almost a year now and I've never felt better or lighter. The cravings for spongy bread, muffins and cookies are long gone, but it's definitely been difficult to find a substitute when the sweet pangs strike.
Well, last Friday I'm afraid I was introduced to what could inevitably become my weakness - Tori's Bakeshop - a bakery dedicated to the dairy free, gluten free, wheat free and refined sugar free. The catch is, you would never know.
Over the most delicious gluten free, vegan chocolate chip cookie ever and an Americano, Miss Tori and I sat and chatted about owning a business and her tricks to delicious gluten free grub.
When Tori started eating a vegan diet eight years ago, all she wanted to do was recreate her favourites. With very little training as a baker, she experimented a lot and enrolled in a basic baking course, with the goal of one day opening her own bakeshop. Tired of irregular contract work in theatre production, she just went for it and opened up shop in March of this year.
An entrepreneur at heart, I love hearing fearless stories like this. I asked if she had any tips for people considering starting their own businesses and she said a) if you can, find a partner and b) work in the industry first. Working in a bakery gave her the foresight in terms of how much to bake and at what intervals and while she enjoys being solo, it is a lot of work doing the baking (starting at 4:00 am!) as well as running the business side of things.
So, of course I asked what her secrets are to yummy gluten free baking and while she wouldn't share her secret recipes she reminded me that gluten free batter is always wetter than regular batter, "don't let the thick yogurt-like consistency scare you," she said. Also play around with alternative flour blends! She always has a stash of sorghum flour, brown rice flour, millet flour, arrowroot starch, and white rice flour on hand.
Next time you're in the Queen East area and have a hankering for a wheat free cinnamon bun or a blueberry lemon scone check out this awesome find. Tori also offers custom order cakes - perfect for those first birthday parties - as well as a selection of Tealish teas and espresso-based drinks. Over the next few weeks she'll be offering gluten free sandwiches and gluten free loaves of bread. Yum!
Best of luck to Tori and thanks for the treats!