HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Walk into the Mason/Dixon Bakery and the sights and smells are enough to make the mouth water. But this bakery is gluten and wheat-free, according to co-owner Ashley Ramirez.
"When we first moved down here we realized how little there was available with me (having) Celiac disease," Ashley said. "We had a hard time finding places that we could eat."
Celiac is an autoimmune reaction to eating gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Ashley's husband Taylor is also an owner in the business.
"While she was getting her Ph.D, I got my MBA," said Taylor. "I was working in a bank here... once we realized how it was really taking off and how much we were fulfilling such a great need in the community, I chose to leave my job to help with running the business."
Both smart and well-educated, they decided to fill a community need. Ashley said they get a lot of requests.
"A family who can't have 50 different things (will say) 'Can you come up with something for me?' And I do have my Ph.D in chemistry, so recipe development is fun for me," she explained.
They use 17 different flours at the bakery. The idea is to make sure there are options, especially where flours are concerned. There are also options when it comes to sweeteners because, Ashley said, everything here is naturally sweetened.
"We have a wide product line that are sweetened purely with honey, maple syrup or naturally with fruits," she said.
While they prefer to use local honey, they go through 50 pounds a week and finding it is difficult. But they enjoy the challenges and helping people who think they can not have their cake and eat it too.
Learn more about the Mason/Dixon Bakery through their website.