Sunday, 26 August 2012

The Little Coffee Company

I was on my way to Boho Gelato with the boyfriend when we spotted a possibly new or previously unnoticed coffee shop, The Little Coffee Company in Brighton. It had a large sign outside saying 'Vegetarian and Vegan Sandwiches'. Who can resist that?

The server said they were closing in 10 minutes which was a surprise at 3.30ish in the afternoon but maybe it was because it is a bank holiday weekend. The opening hours on their website are much longer 10am-5pm on a Sunday, 7am-7pm Mon-Fri and 9am-7pm on Saturdays. It meant that we had to choose what we wanted quickly. Luckily they have clear signs on the food for vegetarian, gluten free and/or vegan. I was in the mood for sugar so went for the Vegan Chocolate ginger Torte and it was lovely. I'm not sure if that was the name they gave it as it was a bit of a rush. It was very gingery, chocolatey, dense and satisfying.

Bad phone photo

I'm excited to go another day to have a sandwich and a cup of coffee. I saw a white bap with peanut butter and jam being advertised but didn't have time to discover more.

We still got boho gelato sorbet. I had chocolate and banana which was yum.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Vegan Hastings!

Hastings has vegan options. My family have been on holiday in Hastings this week and I came to join them on Tuesday. They did their research and found 'Eat @ ours' who run 2 vegan friendly cafes in the area. 'Eat @ The Park' is in Alexandra Park, that my family went to before picking me up from the station, and 'Eat @ The Stade' is in Hastings Old Town. Their @ The Park menu is on the website and the food @ The Stade is very similar.

I went with them to Eat @ The Stade and enjoyed a baked potato, bean chilli, vegan cheese, salad and hummus. The hummus was to replace the coleslaw. I enjoyed the chilli and cheese but the hummus was a bit much with the cheese. It was a proper filling meal though. My mum had the same as me. My dad had the all day breakfast which I would have had if I liked mushrooms, vegan bacon and tomatoes. I did try the hash brown and sausage which were good. My sister had the burger which she did think was probably your average vegan burger from the supermarket but we do like vegan burgers from supermarkets. They had a good range of vegan drinks including Fentiman's soft drinks and Weston's cider. We love Fentiman's.

The Vegan breakfast and the baked potato with bean chilli and cheese. Washed down with Fentiman's ginger beer and Fentiman's Shandy.
Good everyday vegan food. It was nice to find vegan food when we weren't expecting it but if you visit Hastings I would suggest also visiting Brighton for something a bit more special.

Next, we wanted dessert. Vegan sorbet seems to be popping up everywhere this summer. Hastings hasn't been left out. There are a few ice cream and sorbet places as you might expect in a seaside town. We chose 'Di Pola's' and asked if the sorbets contained any animal ingredients. The server and the manager were both very helpful answering our questions "so no milk? no eggs? no gelatine?". The manager told the server to use a different serving spoon to ensure that there had been no contamination. We  each had a different flavour; strawberry, banana and kiwi. My mum sampled all of ours. They also had blueberry or lemon. They had a lovely flavour that actually tasted like the fruits and were not too sugary. The texture of the sorbet is great and we were wondering if we could recreate any ourselves with the right ice cream maker. I'm definitely thinking of getting one. We plan to go back for more sorbet on our last day too.

A google search for Di Pola's comes up with this quirky video. They also have a facebook page.
A google search for Fentiman's also comes up with some funny videos that make it look a bit dangerous to drink it!

Monday, 9 April 2012

Happy Easter Everyone

Belated Happy Easter!

Easter is getting more and more exciting for Vegans! Sugar high!

This year I got:

Choices White Chocolate Egg and Choices Caramel Egg from Sainsbury's.

The white chocolate egg came with white chocolate buttons. You can see the caramels that came with the other egg. I got a hit of caramel smell when I cracked the Caramel Egg but I found the flavour to not be as strong as the smell. Still tasty.

After Eight bunny from the 99p shop.

After Eights have been vegan in the past but then they added buttermilk. The bunny is vegan though and my mum decided it was better than the creamy After Eights. Lovely mint chocolate.

I'm also tempted to go and try and find this Hotel Chocolat egg today in the sales but it is still expensive!

Yesterday evening the boyfriend's and my uni friends came round to make a vegan roast dinner. :) I had a great time and would happily cook for them all again.

We had:
Roast potatoes (roasted with garlic and rosemary)
Sweet potato and thyme mash
Yorkshire puddings
Roasted onion and parsnips
and Tofu roast with stuffing and gravy but we used shop bought stuffing and gravy

Tofu roast after being taken out of the colander. Ready to coat with Soy sauce and oil.

Tofu roast after cooking.
The tofu roast was a bit too salty for my taste but I don't often add salt to my food. I want to try and think of some new flavours for it. I am really looking forward to my tofu and stuffing sandwiches for lunch :)

Monday, 13 February 2012

No work = brunch

How exciting! No work this week!

I was in London on Saturday so on the way back home I made a special diversion out to Brixton just for cupcakes. There are no pictures of the cupcakes as I couldn't wait to sample them all so they don't look as pretty now. I bought 4: cola, cookies and cream, strawberry chocolate and rhubarb crumble. I think my favourite was the cola cupcake as I really didn't expect it to actually taste like cola but it did.

It was at Ms Cupcake's that I found The (all day) Breakfast Scoffer cookbook.

It's a great little book. For only £1.50 you get lots of simple recipes. I already have The Cake Scoffer, The  Salad Scoffer and The Return of the Cake Scoffer and knew that they were great.

I have a week off work which meant that I didn't have to get up early and I didn't have to quickly shovel down some porridge before I left the house. I had time to try a new recipe. So this morning I got to try out Vegan Eggy Bread. I tested it on the non-vegan boyfriend and he said it was surprisingly similar to the real thing. He suggested that it needed to be a bit gooier in the middle. I think I could achieve that next time by soaking the bread in the mixture, rather than spreading it on the top, and frying it with a bit more oil and a higher temperature so it cooks the outside quickly and doesn't dry out the inside. I ate mine with baked beans.

I love how simple the recipes from these books are so that you can tinker with them easily to make them a bit your own. Just like the microwave sponge pudding that I often make from the cake scoffer book.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Fake chicken noodle soup

Me and the boyfriend were poorly so I made a meal with everything I could think of to make our cold's go away: chilli, garlic, ginger, veg (pak choi, carrots and spring onions), tofu and Sainsbury's basic chicken noodles. I'm not necessarily saying Sainsbury's basic noodles make you better but warm noodley mmm can.

I used two packets of noodles but took out one of the seasoning packets to make the flavouring less strong. There was enough flavour in it anyway without any seasoning packets and I still can't eat the noodles without my head going 'is this chicken, is this chicken, is this what chicken tastes like?'. As a lifelong vegan it freaks me out a bit!

I made the tofu using this great method. It was so easy.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Vegan/Veggie Fry Up with Friends

This is my plate of vegan food. My boyfriend often has a fry up after a night out but it normally involves bacon and I find bacon difficult to be around. Luckily our vegetarian friends have now come back after studying for a term in America. I'm now less outnumbered and it was actually the boyfriend and one of the vegetarian friends who suggested that we meet up for a veggie fry up. We even roped in a couple of meat eating friends a who were very satisfied with their meals.

Everyone brought round whatever they had at their student houses and we cooked it up together. This was a great achievement considering the size of our kitchen. The only non-vegan food were eggs and a couple of veggie sausages. The one on my plate is Linda McCartney.

We then danced off our food using the Wii and took some hilarious videos! We also had lots of fun playing with my new purple and sparkly hula hoop that I got for Christmas.

Friday, 20 January 2012

Birthday Cheesecake

I didn't have any candles to blow out for my birthday so when I went round to my parents house recently, they got out a cheesecake they had found in the health food shop. It's by 'Food association with swedish glace'.

My Dad helpfully (?) pointed out that it was 60grams of fat for the whole thing so if you imagine it is a clock then you can decide exactly how much fat you want to consume. Not really what I want to think about when I'm eating cake for my birthday :P Maybe I shouldn't have told you all either..

I thought it was quite small after my first experience of cheesecake being this strawberry cheesecake. When my parents told me we were having cheesecake I just assumed it would be bigger, especially after the fat content conversation (thanks Dad). However, I think this cheesecake was just the right size for a small family of vegans like us. The strawberry cheesecake took a long time to eat up and these cheesecakes are best within the first 24 hours of less (still yum later but different texture). The Food Heaven cheesecake is frozen and you defrost it for 60 minutes before eating. It tastes like lemon cream biscuits which sounds a bit obvious now that I write it. I can't wait to try the berry version.


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