Brixton Market is booming right now. There are stalls 7 days a week and the market is central to Brixton’s reputation as a local shopping destination. There’s been some discussion as to whether things like the re-branded Granville Arcade (or Brixton Village) or the Station Road Market are for everyone in the area or just a certain well heeled crowd who visit so it was great to meet a pair of locals who are setting up a thriving market stall business that is definitely for everyone.
Not only are Crumbs of Brixton‘s handmade cookies packed with top quality organic and fairtrade ingredients, they are ‘incidentally vegan’ so contain no animal based products of any description. This means that a variety of dietary requirements now have access to freshly baked American style cookies, especially as some varieties are also wheat free. But you don’t have be lactose intolerant or or egg free to appreciate these beautiful baked goods. They don’t taste like anything has been left out at all and have no hint of previously virtuous feeling vegan baking that some people may not have enjoyed in the past.
The results of the hard work and the baking skills of friends, Matt and Jamey, the cookies are inspired by her Texan roots with their size and soft chewy texture that American cookies are famed for. But they are given a light touch with their years of combined baking experience and the very different baking style. They currently offer six varieties from double chocolate with hazelnut flour to the wheat free almond butter and the signature ‘Cowgirl Cookie’ with pecan, salted pretzels and choc chips for the nut lovers and lemon, oatmeal and ginger and choc chip if you aren’t feeling nuts right now.
Matt and Jamey explained what they want to achieve with their cookies. I thought we were going to get all scientific with their blends of flour and balance of ingredients, but it is very simple. They want to make great cookies that make people happy. They don’t want them to be just great vegan cookies, but great by everyone’s standards so that everyone can enjoy them together and no one is excluded. The fact that they find baking this way offers greater creativity and a lighter result are an added bonus. (As is the fact the lighter finish means you can eat twice as many of them!)
They enjoy baking and want to bring something a little bit different to people as they hope to branch out into cookie pies and other flavours as the business builds. Around on the market stall since the early winter, they stand out for another reason. Everything they make and bake is transported by bike, allowing them to pop up absolutely anywhere with their cookies. You know you’re at the right stall when you see the famous trailer! Both avid cyclists, Matt and Jamey share the business equally, challenging some people’s ideas that he should do the lifting and she should do the baking. But both the Crumbs team have the magic baking touch…
They are appearing this weekend at Brixton Station Road on Saturday and West Norwood Feast on Sunday, but if you can’t get down there due to Jubilee commitments, you can buy the baked cookies and batches of their raw cookie dough via the website. At £5 for 4, the cookies are great value. The only issue is which to choose. I sampled as many as I could when I met Matt and Jamey this week and thought each flavour was my favourite until I tried the next one and fell in love with that too. I could see why Matt rates the Oatmeal and Ginger as one of his favourite things to eat full stop.
Delicious, made with love and properly local, Crumbs of Brixton are exactly the kind of business that Brixton needs more of. They even take the electronic Brixton Pound so the next time you fancy a sweet treat, get down to Station Road and do your bit. You’ll see what they mean about making people happy when you taste one of their cookies yourself!
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Miss South blogs at northsouthfood