Taryn Schaal, mistress of the Vegan Oven.
The holidays are huge time for baked goods, whether you're munching on Christmas cookies made by co-workers or having your mom's spectacular rum cake.
And thanks to the efforts of Taryn Schaal, local vegans and vegetarians can nosh on cupcakes that are just as tasty as the stuff you'd find at your neighboorhood bakery.
For the past six months, the 25-year-old social worker (and occasional amateur pin-up model) has been cooking up a sweet selection of cookies, doughnuts, and other baked delights from scratch that are made without any animal products whatsoever. She's dubbed her operation "The Vegan Oven" and has been baking up orders both for local customers and to ship across the country.
Schaal uses a combination of organic and vegan-friendly ingredients for her recipes, such as soy milk, Earth Balance whipped spread, and a tapioca-based egg substitute. She can also customize her creations for those with allergies to soy or wheat.
Her menu of treats is quite spectacular, as you can see with the following food porn:
Schaal makes a variety of cookies, including vegan chocolate chip, oatmeal-rasin, peanut butter, snickerdoodles, and decorated sugar cookies.
These sweet-looking cinnamon rolls are covered in gooey and creamy frosting and cost $1 each (or $10 for a dozen). Try to resist them, if you can.
And if you're a cupcake fan, Schaal can help satisfy your sweet tooth. Various frostings and toppings are available, like the Christmas colors pictured here. The treats are only a buck each, or $2 for jumbo-sized.
Her menu also includes irresistible-looking Brazilian nut bars, doughnuts, peanut butter cups, pretzels, and even cheesecake (!!). Schaal's been busy baking up a storm lately, but says she's able to fulfill any last-minute orders for the holidays.
"I had someone call me the other day wanting cookies in like two hours," she jokes.
Check out her MySpace for more samples and pictures from her menu. -- Benjamin Leatherman