Back in November I was having a little grumble about Terry’s Chocolate Orange, and it’s lack of suitability for coeliacs. I received a comment on the blog post from Lisa Hackett of Let Them Eat Cake suggesting that she could offer me a chocolate orange fix in the form of her Jaffa Slice. In December I popped down to the Christmas food fair at Royal William Yard to meet Lisa and try her products for myself. I found out Lisa is gluten free herself due to suffering from Crohn’s disease. Lisa sent me her story of why she started Let Them Eat Cake, I really enjoyed reading it and she was kind enough to let me share it with you:
“After being diagnosed with Crohn’s disease I had to undergo a period of trial and error to establish what triggers my symptoms. As I have had to cut many foods out of my diet that I had previously considered to be daily staples I wasn’t really left with much to enjoy. For months I had a very plain and dull diet. Then I started researching Crohn’s and Coeliac websites for dietary help, I experimented with the few food stuffs I had left to enjoy and after a lot of trial and error I found ways of increasing my choice of foods. I could now eat cakes, bread, pastry and even Yorkshire puddings. Wow. What I didn’t expect was the reaction from friends and family who also sampled these items and wanted more. Had I cracked the ultimate dream, to make gluten free products that the whole family can enjoy? I had been really upset on my birthday to receive my dried out, tasteless, shop bought ‘special’ cake whilst the rest of my friends enjoyed the selection of luscious ‘normal’ cakes that they had baked for themselves and that I couldn’t share. I realised then the isolation of my illness. It only got worse when we tried to go out for a meal, even my friends got to the point of thinking I was just being fussy. One waiter even jumped back in shock when I said I suffer from Crohn’s Disease, I think he thought it was contagious! I decided if I was feeling isolated and alone by my illness then others must be in the same boat, especially as many of the ‘free from’ foods really aren’t that great and the local people that do make gluten free products do it in a kitchen where they use wheat flour the rest of the time so the cross contamination risk is high. I therefore felt it was time to create a dedicated gluten free kitchen.
I did my first market in late October 2012, only supplying cakes, the feedback was so spectacular I was blown away by the response to my cakes. It became apparent that many people need to have both gluten and dairy free diet. As none of my cakes at that time had fat in them they where by default dairy free too. I now have introduced items such as Bakewell slice that has the traditional pastry bottom, but as I now have found a good quality dairy replacement these too are both gluten and dairy free. The cakes are made to my secret recipes that I have worked out for myself. Many of them are made using vegetable such as Beetroot, Aubergine, Squash, Carrot and even potatoes. The natural sweetness in the vegetables means that I do not need to load the cakes with sugar, some of them are totally sugar free. Some are made with honey, I keep my own bees so can use my honey from my garden to sweeten my cakes. I live in the Tamar valley so the fruit and vegetables that I use are local and organic, we even have locally grown Peaches. With the exception of my Christmas lines my cakes are great for those watching the weight, my cakes range between 90 and 180 calories per generous portion (Cornish Housewife Portions!) tee hee hee Whilst i have been out selling my cakes it became crystal clear that there is also a need for savoury items so I have now introduced savouries into the range. In the New Year I will also be bringing Scones, Cookies and Biscuits into the range. I am also developing a Catering Service, doing Gluten and Dairy Free buffets for Weddings, Christenings, Parties.”
So gluten free, dairy free cake that’s low in calorie, could this really taste good? I tasted some samples of cake at the food fair and the answer was yes! The vegetable content of the cake not only makes them low calorie, but extremely moist and flavourful. I purchased a pasty (of course!), the previously mentioned Jaffa Slice and a Bakewell Slice to take home.
The Jaffa Slice was a delicious, moist orange cake topped with chocolate, which I demolished so fast I forgot to photograph. I can see why this is so popular with Lisa’s customers. The Bakewell Slice was equally as moist and I really enjoyed this too. Of course I’m always on the hunt for a gluten free pasty and this one had a tasty filling and the pastry stood up well after the pasty was warmed up. Overall I was very impressed with the products.
The range of cakes includes Peach, Poppy Seed and Sweet Potato Muffin, Lemon and Blueberry Muffin, Lemon Drizzle Cake, Chocolate Brownie Chocolate Torte, Apple Blondie and Fresh Raspberry and White Chocolate Blondie and many more. The savoury range includes Hand Raised Pork Pies, Bacon and Egg Pie, savoury muffins and a range of quiches (note the quiches are not dairy free).
You can find Let Them Eat Cake’s products at Jeniffer’s Deli in Fore Street Saltash or at the following markets:
- Liskeard Market, every second Saturday 9am to 3pm. This is an outdoor market situated on The Parade right outside the old Webbs Hotel building, it can be cancelled in severe weather conditions. Market currently not running until March
- Crocodon Market St Mellion, every third Saturday, 9am to 3pm, next one is 19th January. This is held in a barn so we are in the dry even if it is pouring down outside (wear stout boots as it can get a little muddy in the car park) I have to date sold out at each market here so come early to avoid disappointment.
- Royal William Yard – first Sunday of the month from March through to December. Next market is Sunday March 2nd
Note the full range of products are not stocked at every market, so if there was something in particular you want it’s best to contact Lisa in advance and she can ensure she has it for you. You can contact Lisa on 07508360035, via email at email@example.com or at the Let Them Eat Cake Facebook page. Lisa is on the lookout for more stockists so contact her if you are interested, and I’ll definitely be stopping by to stock up on some Jaffa Slice if she can find a stockist in Plymouth.
Kevin, Gluten Free by the Sea