I have an insatiable sweet tooth.
My favorite flavor at Baskin Robbins was always mint chocolate chip and was served in a root beer float. I could devour cherry pie for breakfast and during the holidays, it was the egg white cookies that did me in. For me, ensuring that I could have my cake and eat it too was a big deal when switching to a vegan lifestyle.
I quickly learned the art of satisfying my vegan sweet tooth, and made sure not to compromise the flavor and texture of my standard favorites. In fact, after reading the opening of the Joy of Vegan Baking, I learned that in fact, baking is a science, and it’s the functional components of any baked treat ensure it’s survival on our tables.
I have taken part in hosting the Long Island Site of the Annual Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale for the past two years, and each year have met new people with a passion for baking cruelty-free sweets.
This year, I met Jaclyn Shanley who owns Little Miss Desserts. She’s a cruelty-free made to order baker. When I tried her chocolate cupcakes, I was hooked.
This summer, I commissioned Jaclyn to bake the chocolate cupcakes with pink and white icing for my daughter’s second birthday party. Guests, mostly omnivores, were floored.
Last week, we held a vegan taste-test at my home with six omnivorous guests. Jaclyn presented absolutely gorgeous cake pops, the newest dessert trend. These bite-sized cakes were coated in firmed chocolate icing, with moist and delectable cake interior, and came on a lollipop stick. The menu for the evening: Almond Joy and peanut butter and chocolate.
It was interesting to watch those who were not so sure about veganism bite into the dessert with hesitation and less than pleasant expectations. Eyebrows raised, the table of guests dove into the desserts after the first bite!
We asked, “What does vegan taste like?” Here is what some of our taste-testers had to say for themselves:
Rich, from Merrick
“These are awesome. No one would ever be able to tell the difference.”
Bob, from Lynbrook
“Typically, something vegan would not be my dessert of choice, but I am open to trying something new. I immediately found myself going for a second and then a third bite of what I can only describe as something truly delicious and not at all what I had expected. My only disappointment was that I soon found my plate empty.”
Karen, from Massapequa
”The cake pops were packed with flavor. The cake stayed nice and moist and wasn't too sweet. I have been fortunate to have had Little Miss Desserts before and they taste better than what I have bought from traditional bakeries in the past.”
Long after our plates were licked clean, we chatted about why vegan, why not vegan, and wanted to know what prompted Jaclyn to start her own company.
“My goal was to create vegan delights that are so delicious even Omnivores will ask for seconds, “ said Shanley. “Starting Little Miss Desserts was my way of showing people that being vegan doesn't mean you have to settle. These treats are a first choice for all the right reasons. Rich, smart and conscious ingredients make my desserts top notch.”