Sunday 8 December 2013

Out and About

I'm often one of those strange people you see taking photos of their food in restaurants/cafes. Although it's less strange now, because I've got a smart phone and I'm no longer pulling out a massive camera.  Plus if you taking a picture on a smart phone, people assume that you're just uploading a picture of your food to Facebook or Twitter. Which is quite normal.

So anyway, I thought I'd share a couple of pictures of things I've been eating whilst out and about.

Budda Lounge - Ramsbottom
It was my birthday in November and I went for meal at Budda Lounge in Ramsbottom with The Boy and his family.  I've got no pictures of the main, but I took a rather crappy picture of the starter which was vegetarian crispy duck, which I assume is Seitan. They also do vegetarian rack of ribs!

I should have took a picture of the assembled wrap!
The food here is amazing, but on the pricey side so it's only for special occasions.

V Revolution- Manchester (Northern Quarter)
The Boy was unable to take my birthday off, therefore we took a few days off together the week afterwards and visited Manchester City Centre and for lunch we headed to V Revolution, which is a vegan cafe/shop. Pretty much everything they sell involves some kind of meat and cheese substitute which meant The Boy, who avoids fake meat and cheese had to bite the bullet and face his fears.  We both went for the nacho hotdog, which came with nachos, salsa and the best UK vegan cheese I have ever tasted (I think it was one of the Veganic cheeses which the sold in the shop).

Even The Boy loved this, and pronounced the whole thing as 'pretty convincing' which is the biggest complement he's ever given any kind of meat/cheese alternative!

People who know I'm a veggie are always surprised when I say I love Nandos.  In fact Nandos sell three types of veggie burger which is pretty impressive considering that many other places only have one.  Even as an Omni, I always went for a burger, as I have always been pretty grossed out by stuff of the bone.

The only vegan option is their veggie burger  which is a soya and tomato burger (the others are a beanie burger and a portabella mushroom and halluomi burger, both of which contain cheese).  However you need to ask them to skip on the mayo to make it vegan.  I often go for the pitta, along with corn on the cob (to make it healthy) and peri peri chips (which I then cover in ketchup).

I think the grated carrot in the salad is a new addition, of which I very much approve of!

According to their FAQs, all vegetarian food is cooked separate grill, using separate utensils and marinades.

Christmas Markets
Around this time of year, we like to visits various Christmas markets at the weekends.  This usually consists of a few staples (Manchester, Birmingham and Lincoln) and a few wild cards.  This year's wild cards were Ulverston and Bakewell.

Out of the two, Ulverston was our favourite, and may get added to the list of staples.  It's a Dickensian market, like Lincoln but what made it unusual is that quite a few of the residents and stall holders dressed in traditional Dickensian dress.  Trying to keep to a vegan diet at these types of events is always a challenge (even vegetarian can be hard, and mostly involving cheese) however, there was an Indian stall that was run by what I assume to be a Ulverston curry restaurant that advertised itself as being vegan friendly which I bought a samosa from (sorry no pictures).  However for our main meal, we went to Gillams, which is a vegetarian tea room and shop. It was extremely busy, however after a bit of a wait, filled with a browse around the shop attached to the cafe, we managed to get a table.  I went for one of the day's specials which was a sausage sandwich with a red wine gravy.  And for drink, I went for the Christmas market classic of mulled wine.

I also bought a vegan mince pie and a vegan scone from the shop.  The pastry on the mince pie was a bit too thick for me but the scone was nice.

Unfortunately, despite the loving Bakewell itself we weren't too keen on the Christmas Market.  There weren't many vegan options, and the only vegetarian option was a crepe stall.  Therefore, I ending up popping into their Holland and Barrett and getting a 'porkless pie' from their Veg.Out range.  As someone who previously loved pork pie, I thought it was pretty convincing, and came without the disgusting jelly I always despised.  It could be improved by increasing the amount of 'meat' inside it, but I'll be definitely getting one or two of the larger pies for the traditional Christmas Eve buffet.

This weekend we went to Lincoln, which is our favourite of the markets and is the oldest Dickensian Markets.  it's always pretty packed, so I didn't manage to take photos but I had a falafel wrap, some toasted cashews coated in cinnamon and sugar (yum!) and the traditional veggie burger from Lincoln's veggie shop, Yellow Bellies of Bailgate which is right at the end of the market.

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