Baking for markets means you get to meet lots of people, experiment with flavours and get immediate feedback. If they don’t like it, they won’t buy it!Clare and Charlotte
Lemon Drizzle Tea & Cakes trade around several markets, including Levenshulme Market, Cheadle Maker’s Market and Chorlton Green Farmer’s Market. I’ve previously tasted their cakes and reviewed them. Here I interview the two people who set up Lemon Drizzle, Clare and Charlotte!
How did you two, meet? What inspired you to set up the business?
We met working in theatre in Manchester. When we’d both had enough of full-time theatre, we had a think about what we’d like to do next and discovered a mutual love of baking cakes. We’d both baked since we were little. We were inspired by the original Great British Bake Off (GBBO), back in the days, it was a small-scale show on BBC2. Baking for markets means you get to meet lots of people, experiment with flavours and get immediate feedback. If they don’t like it, they won’t buy it!
What was the biggest challenge in setting up your business?
All the red tape – registering with the Council, Companies House and the tax man, food hygiene certificate, working through the government’s Safer Food Better Business info. It was like going back to school. It’s well worth it though when this week, we had an environmental health inspection and were awarded a 5* rating!
Where do you get your inspiration for cake flavours from?
We start with Mary Berry recipes and our childhood favourites, then add our own twist so we can call it our own. We love using fruit and vegetables in our cakes and seasonal ingredients.
What are some of your favourite flavours?
Lemon Drizzle, obviously! This time of year we love ginger and cinnamon. We’re about to experiment with a mulled wine spiced tea bread for December. We don’t go in for frostings and gimmicks. They often mask a mediocre cake. We want our cakes to shine on their own.
What was your worst kitchen disaster?
We also bake celebration cakes and one time we were creating a two-tier Frozen cake for a one-year-old. Having bought a brand new tin and it wasn’t till we cut the cake in half we realised it wasn’t cooked at all – it fell apart. We had to bake, cool and decorate in a real rush! It felt like a Showstopper on GBBO.
What would be your last meal on Earth? Three-course menu, please.
Can we start with a cocktail? A Marguerita, please.
Starter – a salad probably with goats cheese, caramelised walnuts and rocket with a crisp Sauvignon Blanc
For our main, we’d both go for a roast lamb dinner, roast potatoes, parsnips and lovely veg with lots of gravy and mint sauce. We’d have to have a really expensive bottle of Barolo … if you’re paying.
For pudding, Charlotte would have profiteroles and Clare would have traditional sherry trifle. And she’d need cheese and biscuits with a Benedictine on the side.
How will you be celebrating Christmas this year?
With family. We’ll spend some time with each side of the family. In the run-up, we’re baking Yule Logs and lots of mince pies. In between Christmas and New Year, we’re baking a 30th birthday cake with a Coronation Street theme. No rest for the wicked!
Lemon Drizzle Tea & Cakes trade around several markets, including Levenshulme Market, Cheadle Maker’s Market and Chorlton Green Farmer’s Market.