The secrets of a vegan bakery that entices customers to drive across the state _ the salt lake tribune chocolate chip brownie recipe

When Konya, 41, started baking vegan goodies for herself at home back in the 1990s, she had no idea that her hobby would become a phenomenon. Chocolate brownie recipe cocoa Eighteen years later, her 1,600-square-foot bakery employs more than 40 people in a round-the-clock operation that in 2012 was named one of the top 10 bakeries in the world – not just the top vegan bakeries – by American Express’s Departures Magazine.

Ellen Kassoff, co-owner of Equinox restaurant in the District of Columbia, says it’s much more than that. Perfect chocolate brownie recipe Equinox gets a regular delivery from Vegan Treats of mini cheesecakes and petits fours for its weekly vegan brunch.

Top rated brownie recipe “What she’s doing over there is phenomenal on a big scale,” Kassoff says. Best dark chocolate brownie recipe “Her experience shows.”

That experience is entirely self-taught. Amazing chocolate brownie recipe With nothing but a passion for plant-based baking and a flair for design, Konya experimented with triple chocolate chip cookies and whoopie pies, and they were a hit with her family and friends. The best fudge brownie recipe But it wasn’t until 1998, after she gave a cake – her now-signature chocolate peanut butter mousse bomb – to a guy in Philly who was selling vegan cheesesteak sandwiches, that she thought about a business. Easy moist chocolate brownie recipe “He used to always say that there was no such thing as a good vegan dessert,” Konya says. Real chocolate brownie recipe “I just brought him the cake to prove a point, but then he called me a few hours later and said, ‘The cake’s all gone. Best simple brownie recipe Can you make me 12 for next week?'”

Although the cheesesteak operation didn’t stand the test of time, Konya spent the next eight years building her own business from scratch with the help of her mom, Vicki, working 80 hours a week, first from home and later in a shared commercial kitchen. Brownie recipe baking chocolate The storefront bakery opened in 2005. Simple brownie recipe using cocoa powder It clearly has been a labor of love for Konya, but also a way to promote her agenda as an animal-rights activist. Brownie scratch recipe “Eating vegan food is the easiest way to make a difference on the planet,” she says. Dark brownie recipe “Compassion starts with your fork.”

For those who think baking without eggs, butter or milk is a challenge, Konya and her staff – the vast majority of whom are not vegan – would strongly disagree. Simple fudgy brownie recipe “It’s just science,” says pastry chef Samantha Armstrong. Best brownie recipe with cocoa “If you can come up with a recipe made with traditional ingredients, you can always come up with one that’s vegan.”

Potato starch, tapioca starch and silken tofu are some of the ingredients that help give Vegan Treats desserts the same rich mouth feel their non-vegan counterparts have, but, to Konya, it all comes down to flavor. Homemade fudgy brownie recipe “Honestly, no one takes a bite of the Chocolate Peppermint Dream cookies and asks where the butter is. Best fudgy brownie recipe with cocoa powder The focus is on the dark chocolaty base and that bite of peppermint.”

Using pureed fruit, such as applesauce or mashed pumpkin, in place of eggs to provide moistness is a technique common to fat-free baking, but, as Konya says, “I’m not cooking with substitutes. Beat brownie recipe I’m just baking the only way I know how.”

For instance, when she was developing the Molasses Pumpkin Streusel Bars in October, autumnal flavors and textures were the starting point. Chocolate brownie recipe no eggs “Then it started to come together as a classic bar cookie, with a layer of vegan cream cheese to balance out all that rich flavor and a crumbly topping for texture. Chocolate brownie recipe in microwave It was really just about imagining what I’d like to eat on a chilly gray afternoon.”

When you’re churning out thousands of cookies a week, along with doughnuts, brownies, cupcakes and 500 or so cakes, you don’t have time to be daunted by ingredients. Chocolate brownie recipe indian “Space is a much bigger challenge here than the recipes,” says pastry chef Ryan Mason. Chocolate brownie recipe martha stewart “We’re just trying to figure out where to put all the layer cakes.”

The wholesale and retail business shows no signs of slowing. Chocolate brownie recipe nigella lawson Even at midday on a Tuesday, there’s a steady stream of customers of all ages at the retail counter, on a street that is not a pedestrian thoroughfare. Chocolate brownie recipe no cocoa powder Outside, a truck is being loaded with wholesale orders – one of five deliveries a week to more than 100 coffee shops, restaurants and boutique grocery stores in New York, Philadelphia and Washington.

Vegan Treats also pitches its tent at vegetarian food festivals in the Northeast and mid-Atlantic, where fans will line up for several hours. 1 egg chocolate brownie recipe The array of treats in the tent can be mind-boggling, from mini-cakes coated in chocolate ganache and topped with colorful handmade fondant flowers to Bavarian cream doughnuts to Key lime pie. Best brownie recipe allrecipes “I like the classics,” says Konya, “but also to innovate.”

Pastry chef Armstrong agrees: “Other bakeries will give you the opportunity to be creative, but a vegan bakery – especially this one – challenges you to think way outside the box.”

Konya’s commitment to operating an ethical and earth-friendly bakery means spending energy on sourcing ingredients that fit both her mission and her standards, all within the confines of a high-volume operation. Fudge brownie cookie recipe Sweetened condensed soy milk is shipped from a supplier in Portugal, while custom-blended chocolate made without palm oil (an ingredient linked to deforestation and animal extinction) comes from Switzerland. Fudge brownie cupcake recipe On the flip side, Konya forages for wild black raspberries herself in the nearby countryside each summer for a house-made soft-serve ice cream that is available only at the store.

“We could definitely make condensed soy milk in-house,” says Konya, “but we go through so much of it on a daily basis that it would be a full-time job for someone to produce the volume that we need. Simple brownie recipe without cocoa powder On the other hand, those black raspberries are local and seasonal, so they are worth that little extra effort.”