As it's a new year and a fresh start and all that jazz, I thought I'd write a little something to clean out all those photos I've been harbouring on my phone thinking to show you one day and never quite got around to publishing.
First up, marshmallow lollies from Ananda Foods! It's their usual vegan marshmallowy goodness wrapped up in thick chocolate and other wonders like coconut or honeycomb pieces. They're very fun, and were a random surprise gift from a friend. Aren't friends great?! They're about £1.50 a pop, and you can get them on the Ananda Foods website (I'd suggest picking up a few boxes of their other marshmallows while you're there).
Another happy discovery was a new vegan stall at a recent Horniman musuem farmer's market, Lovage and Hop. When I happily ran across them, I decided it would be wrong not to treat myself to a bag of their vegan truffles and a slice of their blood orange and turmeric cake to boot.
I hope I'm not much prone to hyperbole, but I think this might have been the nicest bit of vegan cake I've had all year. Prior to shoving this in my cakehole, I wouldn't have said blood orange and turmeric was a flavour combination dying to be put in a cake. But after a few bites of causing alternating message of 'wow, this is interesting' and 'wow, this is uncommonly delicious' from my tastebuds, I rather fell in love with it. I don't think Lovage and Hop are often at the Horniman - they seem to be more usually at Camberwell market - but the next time I'm nearby their stall, I'll be filling up my cake tanks.
I also got to eat at Rootcandi, what was Britain's first vegan tapas restaurant. I say *was* not because there have since been vegan tapas restaurants popping up like mushrooms all over Britain (though that would be lovely), but because in the time that's elapsed between me visiting and getting around to blogging about it, it's now abandoned tapas to become a vegan Pan Asian street food place.
I can't tell you whether that street food is any good because I've not had a chance to try it, but based on my experience of their tapas, it's definitely worth getting yourself down there. When we visited (a loooooong time ago), there was a choice of three tapas menus - European, Indian, and Asian. We went for Indian, and got this rather unwieldy selection of goodies:
While I had visions of a vegan tapas Jenga incident throughout the meal, there wasn't a bum dish among the many that we got to try. I'm planning a return Rootcandi visit next time I'm in Brighton.
From Brighton back to home turf: a new vegan opening in London!
Brick Lane is known for its curries, but at the tail end of last year, it got its very own vegan burger joint, Mooshies.
Mooshies has a small, entirely plant-based menu: four burgers, fries, and a couple of sides. Me and Mr Flicking the Vs stopped by not long after they'd opened and filled our faces. He went for a weekly special, the bhaji burger (happy, exactly what it sounds like) and I got my jackfruit fix with the Pulled Mooshie. It comes with BBQ sauce and coleslaw, and a gluten-free bun. It looks like since our visit there are some gluten-containing options on the menu now too, if you'd rather.
There were also no potato fries, only sweet potato ones, when we dropped by. They'd only just opened their doors when we visited, so I'm looking forward to going back to see how they've settled in, and eating more tasty vegan burgers. Next time, it's a Fillet-Om-Phish aubergine and tartare sauce burger for me.
I got another notable feed at Indian Veg, a veggie buffet place on Chapel Market. Mr Flicking the Vs has been going there for years, but for some reason, I've never dropped by. When we found ourselves hungry in Islington a few weeks back, Mr Flicking the Vs said I should check it out.
I love buffet places more than is strictly necessary, so I didn't take much persuading.
I'd say about half to two-thirds of the dishes are vegan, and for one price (I think about £8) you can fill up your plate as many times as you like. That's a bit of a dangerous offer: when there's good, copious Indian food to be had, it's hard to stop yourself making multiple trips to the buffet table.
There's some bhaji and pakora to be had, a nice selection of salads, a few different rice options, and three or four vegan curries.
Clearly, I had to try a bit of everything:
And then I had to try a bit more. And a bit more. Given the quality of the food and the fact that it's BYOB and there's no corkage, if you can't get your money's worth, then you're just not trying!