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  • Will Juntunen

Mad Batter Bakery

Kayla Buchanan loved to bake, and she believed she could open a successful bakery. She knew how to bake the most delightful of pastries, the macaron. Made from fresh fillings squeezed between two symmetrical wafers of almond flour, the macaron retails for as much as forty dollars a dozen. She, however, didn’t know where to start.

In Spring 2019, her mother-in-law recommended a call to the SBDC sponsored by the Starved Rock Country Alliance. Soon, Amy Lambert helped her sort out the legal aspects of a baking business. Amy was impressed by the creativity that Kayla poured into her recipes, achieving flavors she had never before considered for cakes! Streator's adoption of the Illinois Cottage Food Law ensured that Buchanan could test the waters for her home-baked product. Properly insured for liability, Buchanan sold out her entire capacity for Christmas pastries in 2020 by the middle of December.

Encouraged by her success, Buchanan is moving into her first commercial kitchen to grow her capacity. She now plans to manufacture and ship Mad Batter Bakery Macarons nationwide from her new space above Gaetano’s Vault, a restaurant in downtown Streator, Illinois. By renting time in Gaetano’s commercial kitchen. Buchanan plans to emerge from the limits of the cottage law. Buchanan continues to meet weekly with Lambert for advising. She claims, “Whenever I get off the phone with Lambert, I feel this new found sense of confidence. I feel unlimited.”

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