Written by Lyn Dobrin, firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 11 April 2014 08:00
Some people don’t want to consume dairy products and some people just can’t. For them and for all the rest who like good tasting, healthy baked goods, they now have Sweet To Lick in Williston Park, the only vegan bakery on Long Island.
You won’t find disguised tofu at the bakery. Owner/baker Michael Sabet has taken the flavor profiles of American favorites such as rainbow cookies and brownies and reinvented them.
“I start from scratch with a note pad and pen and write down the basics — flour, fat, sugar — and take it from there.” Sabet says it just doesn’t work taking a conventional recipe and trying to alter it.
Sabet, who grew up in Floral Park, became interested in the vegan lifestyle through his wife Kathee, who has been a vegan for 17 years. Now it is his vision and his goal to make sure that his customers get what they want, which is baked goods that use no animal products — no milk, no eggs, no meat — and of high quality.
“I protect my customers as I would protect my wife,” Sabet said. For example, the sugar he uses in his baking is evaporated cane juice imported from Brazil. “The sugar is not genetically modified and is also fair trade,” he says.
Sabet thinks the time is right for a place such as his.
“We can see more earth-based thinking throughout the country.” He already had a following before he opened from the people who discovered his baked goods at various local farmers’ markets this summer and the word is getting out.
Lauren Iamascia from Garden City says she heard about the place from a yoga friend who is a vegan. She was in the store buying cupcakes and other pastries to serve to her boyfriend. “I’m trying to get him to go more vegetarian,” said Iamascia.
Vegans and those on lactose-free and egg-free diets often have the hardest time with desserts but at Sweet To Lick they’ll have lots from which to choose. Sabet especially likes custom orders. “I do my best to make the cakes delicious and aesthetically pleasing,” said Sabet. He tells the story of how he was able to make a special birthday cake for one customer, a grown woman with teenage children who, due to an egg allergy, had never had a real birthday cake.
Sabet was delighted to make her first-ever birthday cake — Vanilla Gorilla, a vanilla cinnamon swirl cake with vanilla “butter cream” and banana chips on top.
He would love it if his place became a community hang out and to that end, has invited book clubs and other small groups to come in and meet. The coffee is from Gentle Brew in Long Beach, along with herbal teas and high-powered WiFi.
“Here vegans can get what they need and the rest of us can get what we like,” he says.