Plant-powered twins David and Stephen Flynn say that, when it comes to leading a vegan lifestyle, you can have your cake and eat it!
Irish born and bred, the brothers are the duo behind food brand The Happy Pear, and for the past 16 years, they have both followed a vegan diet.
‘We grew up eating meat,’ says Stephen. ‘All the usual stuff – burgers, pizzas, barbecues. To us, food was just fuel.’
That all changed when the twins, aged 39 – who now have five children between them – went travelling in 2004. ‘We got really into food and health when we were away,’ says David. ‘While we were on opposite sides of the globe, we both decided to go vegan within a week of each other!’
‘When we came home, lots of people in our little town in Ireland looked at us like, “What happened to the lads?”’ says Stephen. ‘They looked at us with pity!’ It was then they decided to launch The Happy Pear and spread the word.
‘Embracing vegan living helped us to feel healthier and happier in ourselves,’ says David. ‘I guess we wanted to inspire others to do the same.’
Stephen adds: ‘We love healthy food, but we love cake, too. If you eat kale every day of the week you might be healthy, but you’d be a bit one-dimensional, emotionally speaking! Cake definitely has its place and, if you want to try veganism, it’s a great place to start.’
Here are some of our favourite vegan desserts from their extensive recipe collection...
Summer fruit bakewell tart
This sweet and sumptuous tart makes the perfect afters if you're having anyone dairy-free, egg-free or vegan round for dinner.
The Happy Pear say: "This is a traditional dessert made with shortcrust pastry, a jammy fruit filling and frangipane - a wonderful delicate almond layer."
Chocolate creme cookies
This no-bake, gluten-free and vegan take on a classic sandwich biscuit is bursting with all the goodness of almonds, cashews and dates.
The Happy Pear say: "These are our take on the popular Oreo cookie - and they couldn't be easier. They take minutes to make and are dairy and gluten-free."
Dark chocolate flapjacks
These gooey flapjacks are bursting with fruity apricots and dried mango. The chocolate topping keeps these vegan delights feeling ultra luxurious.
The Happy Pear say: "These crunchy, chewy, colourful flapjacks are a real indulegence and a family favourite in Stephen's house - the little pears love them!"