So we’ve covered our shop, office and brownie chefs. Let’s find out about our Love Brownies kitchen assistant, Toni, shall we?
“Love Brownies was the first company I worked for since I moved to England. I am originally from near Valencia in Spain, but I moved to Yorkshire in March 2016. That was over 2 and half years ago now and I’ve been working at the Bakery since the May of that year. Chantal originally thought I was female because of how I spelled my name, but they got a bit of a shock when I arrived at Hilltop Farm. My name ends in an ‘I’ as that’s how it is spelt in Spain, but I now know Toni is more commonly a girls name in England! My full name is Antonio Salvador Franch Egea, but everyone here calls me Toni – or Chef Salvador!
I started off just washing up but then I started helping with preparing food for outside catering. I used to make a lot of pizzas and arancini balls! Now I make all the sandwiches for the café and decorate the celebration cakes. I am currently training to be a brownie chef as in the future I would like to help bake the brownies, as well as making the cakes that I decorate.
Love Brownies is like a little family. I have good relationships with everyone who works here, and we always have a laugh. They’ve also helped me a lot with my English over the past couple of years. My job role varies each day and I’m always kept busy which is good. Caramel fudge is my favourite brownie as the caramel sauce and fudge pieces melt in your mouth, and it’s a lovely surprise inside! I keep trying to suggest a mojito brownie to the other brownie chefs and Chantal as it’s my favourite drink but they keep saying no! Back when I was in Spain, I was a photographer, working in branding and publicity. But now I’m loving being involved in the baking side of Love Brownies.
Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my twin girls. Myself and Maria – my wife who also works here – love to take them to the park. We go play football, go for walks and ride our bikes. When I’m not with my girls, I like to read. I mostly read in Spanish but I’m trying to improve my English so I’ve just started reading Alice In Wonderland. It’s really interesting but a bit confusing at times!
I’m excited to see what happens in the future at Love Brownies and I hope you liked finding out about me!”
Our new vegan brownie is so good we just had to blog about it twice. Plus, we are pleased to announce that is now completely gluten free! Like all of our other brownies, the vegan brownie is now made with gluten free flour. This means it’s perfect for those who are avoiding both gluten and animal products.
Our new vegan brownie is available in 4 delicious flavours:
- Sorento Orange – Flavoured with natural orange extract and oils to create this zesty, chocolatey treat.
- Fresh Raspberry – A rich chocolate brownie topped with fresh raspberries – it counts as one of your 5 a day, right?!
- Morello Cherry – Juicy morello cherries soaked in Kirsch liquor to make the most divine dessert.
- Coconut – Sweet desiccated coconut, natural coconut extract and coconut oil – one for the Bounty lovers!
You wouldn’t believe our new vegan brownie is actually vegan. Its fudgy, its chocolatey, its rich… it’s everything you want a brownie to be! And just in case there wasn’t quite enough chocolate in the brownie, we’ve topped it with a dark chocolatey glaze. We’ve substituted the dairy and eggs with coconut oil and flax-eggs and you won’t even notice the difference! Coconut oil is rich in good fats which are less likely to be stored in the body and more readily avail be to use as an energy source. Read more about the health benefits of coconut oil on the BBC Good Food website.
We’ve been working on this for a long time now to get it perfect for you, but we’ve still got a long way to go on our vegan journey! We want to expand the range even more. Why not tweet us @love_brownies and tell us what vegan flavours you’d like to see?
Available online to pre-order from Friday!
You will be able to pre-order our new vegan brownie on Friday 12thOctober here for a gift or just because you want to treat yourself! We will be delivering after Friday 19thOctober onwards. The new vegan brownie will be baked fresh every day so will always be available in our shop, but due to how popular it is, then always reserve some in advance, pop in or give us a call just to avoid any disappointment.
We have a team of brownie bakers here at Love Brownies. We’ve introduced you to Emma, but let’s find out a little bit about our other brownie baker, Sally.
“When I first started working at Love Brownies in April 2016, I was based in the kitchen at Hilltop farm as a brownie baker and product developer. This was before we had the shop in Ilkley! I’ve been here nearly 2 and half years now, but I’ve actually known Chantal for over 15 years. We met at the livery yard where we used to keep our horses and we used to go out riding together. I live locally so it’s great to be so close to the Love Brownies bakery in Ilkley.
My main roles are still baking brownies and product development, but I sometimes help with other jobs in the office and shop. I’ve recently developed our vegan brownie. It’s something that is very close to my heart as my dad has been vegan for 10 years – he loves it! We now do it in 3 different flavours; raspberry, coconut and orange. I’ve got some ideas for new brownie flavours. I’m thinking coffee and banana – not together though! I’m a bit of a perfectionist, so I’m constantly striving to make the best brownies I can.
There are so many things I love about working here. We are such a nice, happy, hardworking team. I work really well under pressure, so when it’s busy the day just flies by and I feel really productive. My personal record for the number of brownies I made in 1 day is 875, which is a lot to say each one is made individually!
Love Brownies brownies are nothing like I’ve ever tasted before. I love everything about them. They’re soft, fudgy, sweet and they hit all the right spots! Our brownies are everything a brownie should be and more – if I do say so myself! Trust me when I say the finest quality ingredients are used. They are award-winning brownies after all! Salted caramel is my favourite brownie to bake as it’s a little bit more challenging as the ingredients are slightly different and it’s got a little flourish of sea salt on top. Salted caramel was my favourite flavour, but I think morello cherry has now pipped it to the post!
My favourite of the year at the bakery has to be either Christmas or Easter. The mince pie brownie is amazing, but at Easter we have a crème-egg brownie, which has got a whole crème-egg in the middle to give a sweet, chocolatey, gooey centre!
I was taught to bake by my Nanna who was a pastry chef and a very traditional cook. She made the most amazing desserts and the best jam roly-poly I’ve ever had! I used to bake with her every weekend and we made everything from scones and curd tarts to butterfly buns! I’ve still got her original 1940’s Bero recipe book! It still fascinates me that she used to cut up every piece of dried fruit for a her christmas cake and bake it at gas mark ½ over-night. When I was younger, I would compete in the Body Building Federation competitions. I came second in the ladies category which I’m very proud of! Now I go watch my daughter compete in the tone figure category – she has just come first in the most recent competition. Nowadays, when I’m not at the gym I’m either out riding my Horse, Jake, or doing a spot of gardening.
I love my job here at Love Brownies and I hope you found it interesting reading about what I get up to day-to-day.”
Tithe Barn on Lord Devonshire’s Bolton Abbey estate has recently been renovated to create the most magical wedding venue. Are you planning your dream wedding and can’t decide on what venue to host your special day? Well look no further. This stunning venue in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales will take your breath away. The barn is surrounded by the views of the Priory ruins and the river Wharf. However, it is the interior design that is even more special. You will be reciting your vows in a vast room fit for royalty, amongst a traditional timber frame glowing with fairy lights and candles. Have a look on the Tithe Barn website for how you can make all your wedding dreams come true.
Tithe Barn can host up to 200 guests, plus an extra 100 in the evening. It is one of the biggest timbered aisled barns in the North. The venue itself is licenced to conduct civil ceremonies but there is also the option to have a church ceremony in a vast variety of local churches in the surrounding areas. The team are hoping to get an outdoor civil service license. How amazing would it be to say “I do” surrounded by the rolling hills and scenic countryside? It’s probably best to only book outside for a summer wedding though – we are in Yorkshire after all!
Love Brownie Wedding Cakes
If you haven’t sorted your cake yet, why not pop in and have a chat to us about our range of wedding cakes? Our brownie cakes are available in any of our signature flavours and with a variety of coverings. We are more than happy to discuss decorations to suit your designs and colour schemes for your big day. We can even deliver your custom-made brownie cakes to the Tithe Barn to make your big day just that little bit easier and give you one less thing to worry about! Have a look at our full range, prices and number of portions here.
If this venue sounds like it might be for you then contact the friendly team at the Tithe Barn today for any enquiries and do let us know if Love Brownies can be a part of your special day.
We’ve talked about the office and shop staff that work at Love Brownies, so now it’s time to meet brownie bakers themselves!
“I’ve been working with Chantal here at Love Brownies for over 4 years now – I can’t remember the exact date! When I first started, most of the business was online as we didn’t have the shop in Ilkley, so I had many different roles. I would mostly bake brownies, as well as helping with the office and doing a lot of washing up! Things have changed so much over the last few years, not to mention we have moved kitchen 3 times now to cope with the growth of the company. Anyway, now I am a full time brownie baker and also help with product development.
I’m Yorkshire born and bred, and I’ve lived in and around Leeds all my life. I now live on a farm just outside of Ilkley, so I’m quite close to the Love Brownies bakery. I love working here because the team is so friendly. The job role changes day to day and theres a new challenge everyday. I’m excited for the future and to develop more new flavours of brownie. My favourite brownie to make is probably the caramel fudge as its fun putting the sauce in the middle and getting that gooey surprise inside but my favourite flavour to eat is definitely coconut which is a love it or hate it for some!
I can’t wait for christmas time at Love Brownies, it’s my favourite time of the year! It’s really busy and we don’t stop but we always have christmas music playing! I also love the mince pie brownie, but I’m already thinking of more Christmassy flavours we could do.
I’ve always loved baking and was taught by mum and grandma. I’ve still got my grandmas recipe book! I now bake with my daughter who is 2 and a half, we bake scones nearly every weekend – they’re her favourite and she can now make them off by heart! When I was 18 I had a stall at Otley market where I sold my homemade cakes. I would sell lots of different varieties from big slices of chocolate and carrot cake to rocky road and flapjack, I am also well known for my guiness cake!
When I’m not at work I spend time with my daughter and fiancé on the farm and riding horses. I also spend a lot of time planning my wedding and I’ve decided to make my own wedding cake. My fruit cake is made and ready to ice for the big day. I bake all the time at home – my fiancé says he’s only marrying me for my pavlova! When I was younger, I loved horses and rode quite a lot. I still spend a lot of time outdoors, either walking with my daughter or looking after my zwartble sheep!
I hope you’ve enjoyed finding out a little bit about me and what I do here at Love Brownies.”
The Mocha has finally arrived!
Our newest arrival to the coffee menu is the mocha, but it isn’t just any old ordinary mocha. What do you get when you mix freshly ground espresso with rich hot chocolate and creamy steamed milk? A Love Brownies mocha of course! Why not come and try our new, velvety smooth drink today.
Now, we’re sure you’ve heard all about our hot chocolate, but just in case you haven’t, we’ll give you a brief introduction to our liquid brownie. To make our Italian style hot chocolate, we blend the finest quality Venezuelan chocolate with cream, milk (all locally sourced) and sugar. This makes the dreamiest chocolate drink around. Well we think so… you’ll have to come and try it for yourself but we’re sure you’ll agree! We also love coffee here at Love Brownies, so we thought we’d try and combine the two. The coffee we use has been locally roasted and carefully selected to complement our brownies. It also has chocolate notes, which is why it also goes perfectly with our hot chocolate!
Where did the Mocha originate from?
Mocha was originally a variety of coffee beans grown in Yemen and they didn’t have anything to do with chocolate. Mocha coffee beans are now more commonly known as Arabica beans. The first mocha coffees as we know them were created by the Italians and they called it a ‘bavereisa’. It is thought that the reason why we now call it mocha is due to the original coffee beans having chocolate notes! If you want to know more about it have a read here.
Because the launch of the Love Brownies mocha is definitely something to celebrate, why not snap up this deal next time you come in. For every mocha purchased, you can get a single brownie half price to either sit in or take away. Hurry though, this deal will only be available until the end of September!
So we’ve introduced you to Laura, now it’s time to introduce you to Justine, the operations manager at Love Brownies. Here’s a little bit about her as a person and her role in the Love Brownies team.
“I started at Love Brownies nearly 2 and half years ago (8thMarch 2016 to be exact) as a brownie baker. When Love Brownies bought their first shop here in Ilkley in September 2016, I became the operations manager. My main roles are to ensure the smooth running of the kitchen and shop. I also organise and prepare all the orders that get posted out to customers. I make sure we’ve got plenty of brownies in stock, as well as enough ingredients to keep us baking!
There are many things I love about working at Love Brownies. Every day is different and the role changes frequently. I love seeing customers happy and enjoying their brownies. The brownie team are also fun to work with and we always have a laugh! I’m originally from Rutland in the Midlands, but now I live in Ilkley so it’s great to be able to work in such a lovely community and so close to home. My goals here are Love Brownies are to build a global empire of brownies. I want customers to be eating them world-wide! I also want to help build the brand of quality, award-winning brownies.
It’s really difficult to say what I love most about our brownies. I love that they’re made individually rather than a traybake so they’re all perfectly gooey in the middle. We also have some great innovative flavours including a Wimbledon special in the summer and a mince pie brownie at Christmas. We’re constantly evolving with new brownie flavours and other products to meet the customer’s needs. I think my favourite brownie would have to be the orange as I like how the zest cuts through the sweetness of the chocolate.
I am a mother to two very energetic boys, so I spend quite a lot of my time away from the bakery outside! Whether its walking, cycling, skiing or snowboarding – I like any kind of outdoor sports really! I love walking in the Yorkshire Dales as well as further afield and have done the dalesway walk to the Lake District in the past. I’m also a keen interior designer and I used to own a soft furnishings business. I studied a food and hospitality management course and have been the operations manager for many well known food and drinks chains. But now I just stick to the brownies!
I hope you enjoyed reading about me and my role in the Love Brownies team!”
We like our coffee with a brownie! We’ve recently installed a brand-new fancy machine into our little Love Brownies bakery and we’re having lots of fun experimenting with different types coffee! From now on, we’ll be serving the following:
- Flat White
- Mocha – Coming soon! Yum
But if your favourite isn’t on there, just let us know and we’ll give it a go for you! If you fancy a slightly healthier option, just ask us to make your drink with semi-skimmed or almond milk. We also have decaffeinated.
Our blend of coffee has been specifically chosen by us to go with our brownies. The flavours and aromas have been picked to complement the chocolate we use. The beans have been roasted for longer to allow the flavours, colour and aroma to develop. The highest quality beans are used, meaning the blend is carefully selected from all over the world. But they are roasted and ground right here in our home county of Yorkshire.
History of Coffee
Coffee originates from Ethiopia, and they discovered it by noticing that they got an energy boost when they ate the coffee cherries. This was due to the caffeine. It wasn’t until the 15thcentury when the world’s first coffee shop opened. You can read more about how coffee has changed over the years here. Nowadays we have around 22’000 just in the UK! It is even thought they will outnumber the classic british pubs by 2030!
Why not make use of our drink and brownie deal and enjoy any coffee (or tea) with any brownie for just £3.95! Or, why not make a meal out of it and have a sandwich as well for £6.50. And if you haven’t got time to sit in and enjoy, you can always take these deals away with you.
Love Brownies love smoothies! We’re all about the naughty little treats but we thought it was about time we gave you a slightly healthier option. So, we’ve started doing this great new range of fruit and vegetable smoothies to go with your brownie.
- Berry Go Round – strawberry, raspberry and blackberry
- Big 5 – kiwi, pineapple, mango, apple and strawberry
- Kale Kick – kale, spinach and mango
- Broccoli and the Beast – broccoli, spinach, banana, mango, pineapple and cucumber
- Detox zing – blueberry, carrot, ginger, courgette and banana
Obviously we all know we’re supposed to eat our 5-A-Day, but these smoothies also have many other health benefits. Ginger can aid digestion and also help relieve the symptoms of that nasty cold and flu. Check out BBC Good Food’s website here for more information on ginger and more ways you can incorporate ginger into your diet. Even though kale may seem like it doesn’t belong in a smoothie, it goes really well with mango! Mango takes away the taste of the kale and it’s a great way to get some essential vitamins and minerals. If you’re wanting to be super healthy, why not try it with a scoop of protein powder in? Ask us in the shop for more details!
Our smoothies are available to drink in or take away, served with a sprig of fresh mint. If you drink in we’ll serve it with one of our reusable straws! If you haven’t heard about them yet, have a little read of our keep cups and reusable straws blog post.
Do you love smoothies as much as we do and fancy trying one when you next come in? Just quote ‘blogsmoothie’ when you next come into the shop to get 20% of your first smoothie. Not around this summer? Don’t worry, we’re doing this offer until the 1st October 2018 so you’ve plenty of time to pop in and enjoy!
Each smoothie contains one of your 5-A-Day. So, whether you need your green boost on a morning for your breakfast on the go or a berry smoothie to go with your fresh raspberry brownie, come in and see us and we’ll sort you out!
So, we’ve introduced you to pretty much all of our products here at Love Brownies… but we thought it was time you met the brownie team behind it all. Over the next few weeks, we’re giving you the chance to ‘Meet the Brownie Team’. You’ll be able to find out a little bit about who they are and what they do behind the scenes. We’ll be talking about a different team member each week so keep checking our blog and Meet the Brownie Team!
“I’m the newest brownie team member and the latest to join the Love Brownies mission. I have recently graduated from the University of Leeds with a degree in Food Science. I’m a Yorkshire girl and I love being able to work here back in my home town of Ilkley.
I’ve been here a couple of months now and already I’m loving it and feel like part of the team. I’ve taken on the role as shop manager, so you’ll regularly see me behind the counter serving up your favourite chocolate treats! However, I’ll soon be up in the kitchen as a product developer and baker. My goals here at Love Brownies are to create some new and innovative products. I want to see what more we can do with a brownie! There’s a lot going on here over the next few months and I’m excited to be part of that journey.
The working environment here is great. It can be a bit crazy at times, but the brownie team is really good at working together. And we still manage to have a laugh along the way! I love our brownies as they’ve got that crispy shell and gooey centre. I like to have them slightly warm with a generous scoop of ice cream! It’s difficult to pick my favourite flavour but I’d probably have to say caramel fudge or fresh raspberry!
I’ve always been interested in food, and I’m definitely a fan of eating it! I regularly go out and love finding new places and cuisines to try. I’ve been baking since a young age and was taught by my grandma. I enjoy experimenting in the kitchen which led me to studying food science at university. I love being on stage and in my spare time I do a bit of musical theatre. For the past few years I’ve been involved in productions with Guiseley Amateur Operatic Society. I took a break in my final year of university but I’m hoping to get back into it.
So that’s a little bit about me and I’ll see you next time you pop into the Love Brownies shop!”