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We have a brand new feature series which we will be bringing to you each Friday! It focuses on people, products and brands that we want to showcase to you for their brilliance and innovation! It's called '5 minutes with....' and we have lots of exciting interviews to bring you!

Borough 22, delicious totally free from doughnuts!

(photo credit: Borough 22)

This week, we are featuring the lovely Ryan from Borough 22!

We first met Ryan at the Free From Food Awards back in April. We'd heard LOTS of wonderful things about his fantastic doughnut brand, and seeing as they were also up for an award, we wanted to find out as much as possible! As with many of the amazing allergy businesses that have sprung up over the past few years, Ryan's was born out of wanting to provide safe treats for his allergy suffering family.

Ryan's award nominated totally free-from doughnuts can be ordered at - seriously go check this website out, but don't blame us if you spend LOADS of money, it will all be worth it, trust us!!

Ryan sent the most fantastic package of doughnuts to Callum, which left Callum in awe. We have a review scheduled very soon, but in the meantime, we thought we'd let you all 'meet' Ryan first!

I shall now hand the floor to the legend that is behind Borough 22.

So, over to you Ryan!

What are 5 random facts about you?

  • Naomi Campbell’s grandmother made one of my wedding cakes
  • I’ve never broken a bone
  • My family and I survived an 80mph motorway crash earlier this year. We walked away virtually unscathed and flagged down a taxi to continue on to the airport. We didn’t want to miss our flight
  • I hate the taste of pure butter, margarine, milk and cream. They are my ‘Marmites’! Yuk!
  • I hate being tickled. I scream loudly and fairly high pitched.

What is the story behind your business?

It was a labour of love in a bid to make a free from treat for my multi allergen intolerant wife and my dairy intolerant children. The products I made were so well received that I was convinced to make it a business (and to stop giving brownies and cupcakes away to work colleagues). From there it has been a very nervy ride but a very successful one.

Do you have a favourite place to work in?

Typically I love having the kitchen to myself but for admin the best place I found to work to date was at the Boabab Suites in Tenerife. Just a great, light peaceful workspace. It was here that I was able to complete my business plan.

What do you do when you procrastinate?

Any and everything. I have been known to sort out jumper drawer and clean the bathroom. Mostly I just surf the net though.

Do you have a favourite quote?

“Do on to others as you would have them do on to you” – The golden rule

If you had an entirely free day to spend on your own doing something for your own pleasure what would you do?

Gym in the morning first thing, breakfast at the Plumstead Pantry, indoor rock climbing, a very light lunch and a coffee from the Gentleman Baristas, clothes shopping, baking utensil shopping, massage and sauna followed by dinner at Hakkasan or for in a room with a view,

Do you prefer city, country or coast?

I’m torn between city and coast. Ahhh. I think city. You can do costal things in the city if you know it well enough.

Do you have a favourite book?

Tea with Bea. It’s the main reason baking went from occasional to weekly to daily for me. She taught me so much in that book and I love her for it.

Are you a morning person?

It depends what I have planned for the day. With right motivation I can be. It’s usually the massive chunk of time between 9-6 that I struggle with J

Did you have a favourite television programme as a child?

There are too many! Thundercats sticks in my mind as I just saw a Jamaican remix of the theme tune on Youtube that had me in tears!

What is the one thing you would tell your younger self?

Read more. Knowledge is power. Read more and stand firm for what you believe.

Tea or coffee?

Coffee all day!

Sweet or savoury?

Sweet. Serious sweet tooth!

What is your favourite meal and why?

It would have to be BBQ. Slow cooked ribs that fall off the bone! Nom Nom Nom

What did you want to be when you were younger?

An architect or a bus driver. I’ve always liked construction and building. I like the fact or changing a space through structure. I do like the way the London skyline has changed, from Westminster Abbey and The Houses of Parliament to St. Paul’s Cathedral, St. Pancras Hotel & The Prudential Building in Holborn right the way up to The Barbican Buildings The Gherkin, Lloyds and the Shard.

A family friend was a bus driver and seemed to be content and happy all the time so…

What is your favourite time of the day?

Dusk. There is something magical about that time of day, especially in London and especially in the summer. It’s balance between the closing of a great day and the start of an even better night out

What would your dream job be and why?

Something involving helping people find solutions to their problems. I think it’s why I like free from baking so much. I’m able to tap into that and it feels great. If I can I always like to go the extra mile for my customers

What one bit of advice would you give to someone just starting out in the allergy world?

As a product supplier – Be patient, methodical and creative!


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