Thursday, 31 March 2016

BBQ Pulled Jackfruit Burger

I've had this a couple of times when out and about and had been looking forward to recreating it at home. When I finally managed to find some tinned jackfruit I just knew I had to make this ( tip - you need the type in water or brine, NOT syrup!). Strangely enough I've made something like this in the past using shredded cabbage for the 'meat' so already had a pretty good idea what I was going to do. This also tastes outrageously good with coleslaw so I'm going to let you in on a little secret - Tesco sell in their salad section a product called 'Pink Slaw'. It's basically just shredded cabbage, carrot and pickling vinegar. If you mix one TBSP of Veganaise into a tub of this you get pretty amazing vegan coleslaw, and pretty quickly! 




Ingredients

2 tins (Young green) jackfruit 
1 tsp oil
1/2 onion chopped
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp mild chilli powder
Pinch cumin
1/2 cup vegetable stock 
1 cup BBQ sauce
Pinch of salt & pepper

Open and drain your tins of jackfruit and give the contents a good rinse. Next, you'll want to chop out the hard core at the very centre of each slice in the tin. 
Place your jackfruit into a bowl and coat well with the sugar, paprika, garlic powder, chilli & cumin. 
In a large pan heat up the oil and sauté the onion until it begins to brown slightly. Add in the jackfruit and cook for a further 5-7 minutes. 
Add in your vegetable stock. I use Marigold brand vegan powder made up with boiling water as per instructions on the packet. Add in your BBQ sauce - you could use homemade or store brought. Mix so that all the jackfruit is coated in the sauce and cook on a low heat for around 20-30 minutes. Stir often, you may need to periodically add a little water if the sauce becomes too dry at any point.
Once it is ready you will need to break up the jackfruit pieces to give the 'stringy' pulled look. 
Serve on rolls with coleslaw. 


Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Samphire Brasserie

I've been wanting to go to Samphire Brasserie for the longest time - like literally. Mr B visited over a year ago when he was in Plymouth for work and I was seriously jealous - normally I get to visit all the best places too but when we lived in the Midlands it was pretty far away. Since we moved to Devon in December we've been exploring all the new food options that have opened up to us. Samphire is still over an hour away in the car, but I'm just going to come right out and say this - it's one of those rare places that is totally worth it. Pretty much the only other place we feel like that about is our beloved Veggie World in Milton Keynes. Word of advice! If you are planning a visit, book! We turned up the first time and wept all the way home as they were full.



The whole menu looked amazing and next time I go there are loads more things I'm looking forward to trying. This time I had the 'Big Moc' burger with fries - you guessed it, this is supposed to be pretty much like an imitation Big Mac. Now it has been like a million years since I ate a real one, but this thing was amazing. Samphire Brasserie make all their own seitan and vegan cheese so it was even better to have something 'homemade' and unique to them. 



We also had a 'KFC' bucket to share between us so that we could try a bit of everything. It came with 'drumsticks', popcorn 'chicken', chips, coleslaw, beans and corn on the cob. This was pretty awesome too and Small especially loved the popcorn 'chicken' with the beans and this is a huge thing as she has never especially been a fan of faux meat. We were so completely stuffed by this that we had to pass up on the deserts and get some cake to take away and eat later. I didn't get a snap of this, but it was just as good as the rest of the food we had. 
We also really liked the fact that it is now 100% vegan - not sure when this happened, but everything they serve is now vegan! 
We will definitely be heading back there, especially as our Small person enjoyed it so much as well. If you are in the area you have to go and check it out. 

Monday, 28 March 2016

Vegan Menu at Zizzi

After hearing that Zizzi would not only be doing pizza with vegan cheese, but having a vegan menu with starters and deserts too - we were pretty exited to try it out. Then we heard that the vegan cheese they would be using would be mozzarisella brand and then we felt a little less excited. Having tried it before, I have to say I wasn't that keen and haven't had it since. I've tried many many vegan cheeses over the years and there many really great ones out there.



To start we had a portion of garlic bread each - the portion was huge and we could have easily had one between us! The bread was flatbread style but unfortunately didn't taste at all like garlic. Mine was dressed with rosemary and oil, but was a little dry and needed far far more garlic! 



On my pizza I had mushrooms, black olives and balsamic caramelised onion for my toppings along with the vegan cheese. The pizza was pretty large and the dough was very good. Although the overall pizza was pretty good I still wasn't too keen on the mozzarisella - I know many people have differing opinions on vegan cheese but I still think there are far better ones out there. As far as the toppings they worked well and I couldn't even finish off my pizza - it was definitely bigger than those at Pizza Express. 

I'm really pleased a chain has established it's own vegan menu - it's always great to have more options and I hope even more places follow (I'm looking at you Pizza Express!!). I've heard mixed reviews depending on the branch visited, in my case I went to the Exeter branch. I've heard people say the garlic bread has been brilliant at other branches, so maybe we were just unlucky.