I am excited to be part of a growing community of artisan makers who take great pride in what they do, and are actually nice people. It goes a long way.
We asked a few questions about her dairy-free lifestyle as part of this series, Living Dairy Free:
Why are you dairy-free?
When I started the company in 1997, I was a 19 year-old vegan. This was when vegan was a super weird thing to be, and there was very, very little in the market so I had to get creative. In order to satisfy my sweet tooth I started making my own desserts. The company was born out of that passion, and from the desire to invent great-tasting products that are dairy-free. These days I’m happy that being dairy-free means we are also Kosher Parve, and can offer cookies to people who have dairy allergies, and also to vegans. I guess we aim to please…
Top five favourite dairy-free products?
1/ I don’t know if I’m supposed to say Yoso, but the truth is I LOVE YOSO products. I’m a fan of simple and wholesome foods and Yoso’s yogurt is just the right balance for me and my family.
2/ I am a big fan of Shasha products. There’s a company that has grown immensely, but their quality stays intact. We love Shasha bread and those buckwheat snacks they make.
3/ Earth + City’s coconut macaroons are a family snack favourite at our local Farmer’s Market, and the owners Cassandra and Lisa are both amazing people.
4/ I basically couldn’t survive without Alchemy Pickle Co’s fermented masterpieces. They happen to be our neigbours at work, so I get to drink their kombucha everyday – which I’m very grateful for.
5/ Ying Ying Soy Foods is another family favourite – my son eats their packs of seasoned tofu in one sitting, and they happen to be his favourite snack. Their black bean sauce is also amazing.
Favourite local spot to eat that accommodates dairy-free?
I’m a huge fan of Tabule restaurant. Their falafel is incredible, and pretty much everything else I’ve had on the menu. I’m an advocate of not trying to substitute dairy, but to enjoy foods that are naturally dairy-free like legumes, grains, fruits, and veggies in all the thousands of ways they can be cooked without feeling like anything is missing.
Favourite place to shop for groceries?
So, for a long time I have despised grocery shopping. I actually turn on my phone timer while I do it to see if I can beat my own record of getting it done quickly. Until…I started shopping at the new Sweet Potato on Vine Ave. I may have to get an armchair of my own just so I can hang out in there.