Café review: Buttercream Dreams

By - Thursday 18th February, 2016

Croydon has welcomed a new vegan culinary delight. Consultant chef Tony Bishop-Weston reports

3 Middle Street, Croydon, CR0 1TR

Time from East Croydon:  10 minutes / 3 minutes then   2 minutes


Photo by Buttercream Dreams, used with permission.

It’s been a long time coming. Ironic considering that The Vegetarian Society started in Croydon before eventually moving to Altrincham, near Manchester. There was that famous vegetarian restaurant in Croydon Buddhist Centre. There have been a few stands on Surrey Street Market where vegan wares have been gobbled up as fast as they could be made. Recently the closest that we’ve had was Peppertons in Selhurst, Shahee Bel Poori in Norwood, and the Wholemeal Café in Streatham.

Now egg-free vegetarians, those on dairy free diets and vegans are all bursting with delight as Buttercream Dreams opens in the Beanies Café site at Project B (where Beanies record shop used to be, just behind Kentucky Fried Chicken and close to Surrey Street market).

On opening day they’d sold out two hours before closing time

The new café has been set up by former mental health nurse Lauren Adderley and her partner Cheryl. It came into being because family, relatives, friends and friends of friends found that Lauren’s vegan cakes were the most delicious cakes that they had ever tasted. “I used to bake cakes after work but I was just so busy that in the end I had to give up my job as a nurse to keep up with demand. Then I was lucky enough to get offered the place at Beanies/Plan B”, says Lauren.

On their opening day they were so busy that they’d sold out two hours before closing time. Lauren is already thinking about getting an apprentice from Croydon College and says, “I knew there was a huge unfulfilled vegan market in Croydon but I never dreamt we’d be this busy!”.

Lauren’s mission is to be much more than a café and to be more of a champion of local ethical produce. “We’ve already found some excellent local suppliers but most of the menu is made in our own kitchen from fresh local produce. If we can find the right staff we hope to soon be able to offer restaurant nights. People seem to be travelling here from quite a distance so there is clearly a big demand”.

Lauren’s tattoos depict sweet vegan culinary favourites such as Jammie Dodgers and tofu

The Buttercream Dreams all-day breakfast with avocado, home-made beans, scrambled tofu, sourdough bread, maple-cured vegan ‘facon’ and mushrooms sautéed in garlic and spinach is a winner. The sausage rolls were a big hit with local Green Party activist Tracey Hague’s children, as were the flavoured milkshakes and cakes including banana and caramel loaf cake, chocolate peppermint cake and, for those more puritanical about health, chocolate orange energy balls.

The vegan jerk spiced burger served with pineapple salsa and plantain is already now legendary after only the first day of business.

Lauren clearly is one to wear her heart on her sleeve; her tattoos depict sweet vegan culinary favourites such as Jammie Dodgers and tofu, whilst Oreos and Bourbons are planned, and her love of all things vegan and delicious shine through in the dishes that she creates in her small kitchen. To buy direct from Laura just click .

Tony Bishop-Weston

Tony Bishop-Weston

Tony Bishop-Weston is executive consultant chef, author, presenter and food critic with Foods for Life Health and Nutrition Consultancy. He has won numerous awards, most recently that of VegfestUK's Best Vegan Cookbook for a book which he wrote along with leading London nutritionist Yvonne Bishop-Weston.

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