Flamingo’s Vegan Bakery is the brainchild of Natasha Mackenzie-Ford and her wife Susan, who found there was a gap in the local market.
With treats ranging from cookie sandwiches and ten types of cupcakes, to millionaire shortbread and other sweet treats, all the produce at Flamingo’s Vegan Bakery in Cheltenham are made without animal products.
Natasha and Susan bake the goods at their home in nearby Warden Hill. The pair found that while London had plenty on offer for vegan cake-lovers, offerings in Gloucestershire were slightly harder to come by.
Natasha said: “We like eating cakes. We thought if no one else is doing it we would.”
The shop’s basic sponge recipe includes flour, caster sugar, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, soya milk and cider vinegar. The latter two ingredients curdle to create an egg substitute, according to Natasha.
The most popular order in the shop to date is for cherry bakewell cupcake, but the couple also get a lot of requests for chocolate birthday cake.
Both were originally teachers, who then became childminders, and as Natasha puts it: “Now we’re childminders by day and vegan bakers by night. It’s long hours but it’s worth it. When you’re starting a new business it’s always going to be long days but I really enjoy it so it’s nice."