Meet Susanne and Spike
Provide a little bit of feedback and Susanne of Modo Mio Naked will take what she knows, what you have said and redefine how you thought of brownies, meringues, friands, biscuits, chocolate …and then perfectly combine these ingredients with quinoa.
Working with Kindred Organics to determine the perfect grinding number, to create the perfect density for the quinoa, from which Susanne then creates, we must confess, the perfect balance between chocolate and other iconic Tasmanian ingredients, to culminate in the perfect brownie.
The result a truly sublime wheat free experience that celebrates Tasmanian produce.
Susanne started out with a simple ‘googled’ recipe that appealed to her from the myriad of choices on the internet and then she simply transformed generic brownie into Modo Mio Naked brownies. However, there is nothing simple about Susanne and her son Spike who together have taken Modo Mio Naked on a remarkable journey that has rendered brownies into a unique product that is completely gluten free. This includes no oats, so no possibility of contamination, emphasises Susanne.
As you enter her kitchen in Spreyton the sharp scent of rum and chocolate, a magic brownie combination, permeates the senses. As your gaze takes in the trays cooling on the racks, the stack of chocolate in the pantry, the bag of newly ground quinoa you realise that your senses are embarking on a frenzied journey of taste, sight and smell.
Provenance – where each egg and kilogram of butter comes from – is essential knowledge for this mother and son team. Susanne sees Tassie as her own backyard resource and focuses on using local rum, local eggs, local butter and local quinoa – all grown down the road.
Heat drove Susanne and her family from Brisbane to Devonport. She came for a visit to Port Sorrell and quickly made the change, leaving her job as a business development officer for a multinational company. Now chocolate has taken over her life. From a small start at the local Penguin markets, Susanne and Spike now have their brownies in department stores across the country and all the way to England. Her daughter Rebecca lives in England and on her last visit, she left her coat behind to take five slabs of brownies back with her instead.
Tweaking and perfecting the initial googled brownie recipe; “I reduced the sugar, as it was initially bloody awful … far too sweet”. Susanne proceeded to take out most of the sugar, tweaking each batch and spent many dollars on many kilograms of chocolate as through trial and error and feedback from market patrons the perfect brownie evolved.
The gluten free route was prompted by her son Simon’s gluten intolerance. First Susanne decided to experiment with spelt and then she had a go with quinoa – it was a delicious success. “It just works,” says Susanne and most importantly she knows it source, grown down the road by Kindred Organics.
By using local produce Susanne knows she is using the best possible produce in her products. “You know your supplier and if you have a problem, like the quinoa ground too fine, then you talk to them and find the perfect grind”. With a grin Susanne admits that she knows what the chooks who lay the eggs are fed. There are no additives in anything
The Harvest Launceston Community Farmers’ Market is one of her taste test grounds. “You get immediate feedback on what works and what does not”.
Today, Susanne has moved away from spelt and uses quinoa flour. She tried the seed but the mouthfeel with the seed was not quite right, using spelt gave a smooth brownie, but it was the quinoa that delivered the magic. From 1st July 2019 Susanne has been totally gluten free.
Initially there was some resistance, but brownie aficionados are back and loving the quinoa version.
For Susanne and Spike the next step, after dealing with broken down fridges and mixers, is about creating efficiencies of scale, crunching numbers and continuing to discover new ingredients and experimenting with different products. And it is the community at Harvest, her customers and co-stallholders, their feedback and support that keep her and Spike at the brownie oven.
Contact Modo Mio Naked
phone: 0405 625 032