What I ate this week

I have enlisted the help of a personal trainer and he asked me to keep a food diary for a week so he knows what my diet is like before he makes any nutritional suggestions. I thought I’d share this as I always find it interesting to see what other people eat on a typical day. I tried to take photos of most of my food. I haven’t included drink but generally will have a couple of diet cokes when I’m out, several pints of water, tea and coffee during the day.

I started on the Saturday after seeing the PT first thing.

Saturday

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Saturday Breakfast

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Saturday dinner-Sainsburys Taste the difference Tabbouleh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breakfast: Scrambled tofu with 2 veggie ‘bacon rashers’ and brown sauce. Soy latte.

Snack: Montezuma dark chocolate buttons

Then I went to a cycling lesson to learn how to cycle in London traffic! I was really hungry when I got back so made a very quick meal of

Lunch: Noodles with curry powder and a black cherry soya yoghurt.

We headed into London and met my parents and had a look around a couple of ‘open’ buildings (it was London Open Houses weekend) including the royal courts of justice which was cool. Then back to the parents’ hotel room for:

Snack: Black coffee, a few original pringles and 3 nairns stem ginger oatcakes.

We had to head off to Jurassic Park: The Musical (which was pretty funny!) in Little Venice so picked up some food from Sainsburys.

Dinner: Sainsburys taste the difference Tabbouleh salad and roasted salted pistachios.

I was hungry by the time we got home so had some toast and marmalade.

Sunday

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Sunday Breakfast

Mushroom risotto on toast

Mushroom risotto on toast

Chocolate chia pudding

Chocolate chia pudding

Breakfast: Scrambled tofu on toast with 1 veggie ‘bacon rasher’ and brown sauce. Soy latte.

Snacks: Chocolate chia pudding (chia seeds soaked overnight in chocolate soy milk), roasted and salted pistachios, small bar of dark chocolate.

Lunch: 3 slices of toast

Dinner: Mushroom risotto on toast followed by another (espresso cup of) chocolate chia pudding.

Snack: Black pepper popcorn

Monday

Overnight oats (weekday breakfast)

Overnight oats (weekday breakfast)

Monday lunch

Monday lunch

Monday dinner

Monday dinner

Neapolitan Swedish Glace

Neapolitan Swedish Glace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breakfast: Overnight oats- oats, chia seeds and cinnamon soaked in light soya milk overnight

Snacks: Apple, nectarine and small (30g) bar dark chocolate

Lunch: leftover mushroom risotto and a bag of wasabi glaze popcorn.

Dinner: courgette and carrot ‘noodles’ with arabiata tomato sauce (carrots and courgette spiralized in tomato sauce and arabiata seasoning from vegan food swap parcel) with 2 slices of toast with pure. Followed by a bowl of Neapolitan Swedish Glace.

Snacks: another small bar of chocolate and a sherbet fountain 

Tuesday

Tuesday Lunch

Tuesday Lunch

Tuesday dinner

Tuesday dinner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breakfast: Overnight oats

Snacks: Apple, nectarine and small (30g) bar dark chocolate

Lunch: leftover courgette and carrot ‘noodles’ with arabiata tomato sauce

Dinner: Ratatouille with raw cauliflower rice, 2 slices toast and pure.

Snacks: Some Montezuma dark chocolate buttons

 

Wednesday

Wednesday lunch

Wednesday lunch

Toast snack

Toast snack

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breakfast: Overnight oats

Snacks: Apple and nectarine

Lunch: leftover ratatouille with raw cauliflower rice, most of a box of orgran amaretti biscotti, Starbucks soy coffee frapuccino

Dinner: Bento box from somewhere in South Kensington with tofu, rice, root veg salad and seaweed salad. A glass of white wine.

Snacks: Black pepper crisps, 2 slices of toast with pure when I got home.

 

Thursday

Thursday lunch

Thursday lunch

Breakfast: Overnight oats

Snacks: Apple and nectarine

Lunch: bulgar wheat with chopped tofu and raw mushrooms, dressed in sushi vinegar and soy sauce

(I made this late on Thursday night and I think I did an alright job!)

Dinner: Curry Buffet from

Indian Veg Bhelpoori House

Official website: http://theindianveg.wordpress.com/

Address: 92-93 Chapel Market, N1 9EX

Nearest tube: Angel

I always love the food here and have brought a lot of non-vegetarian friends who have enjoyed it too. There are usually at least 2 kinds of curry plus a dal, plain basmati rice, brown rice, or pilau, a salad bar, pakora, poppadum, and awesome poori that taste a bit like vegan Yorkshire puddings. As much food as you like for £5.50 a head. Also it’s BYOB for no extra charge so I had a nice Aspall’s cider from waitrose plus a couple of glasses of red wine.

The décor in this restaurant is also really interesting with facts, articles and statistics about nutrition, mainly along the lines of meat, dairy and alcohol are bad for you, vegans feel healthier. Some might describe this as “vegan propaganda” but I quite like it, as did some of the friends I took this time!

 

Friday

I was a bit ill overnight and was feeling super rough on Friday morning after no sleep. I was inclined to blame the buffet but I think everyone else was fine after the same food so I guess I picked up some kind of bug from using the underground or a cashpoint or something. Anyway, at least it meant I didn’t eat as much as I normally would!

Lunch:  one and a half warburtons sandwich wraps spread with pure (I was in that state of being really hungry but still feeling quite sick so nice plain wheaty food felt like the right way to go)

Snacks: Some strawberries and coconut water, the remains of my Neapolitan Swedish glace.

Neapolitan Swedish Glace

Neapolitan Swedish Glace

Dinner: Pearl barley with summer vegetables.

Friday dinner

Friday dinner

I was out for dinner at the Hawksmoore, Spitalfields celebrating my father-in-law’s 60th. They always make me a nice vegan dish and look after me well, and normally offer an adapted starter and sorbet for pudding too. It’s a very nice place. They also serve amazing cocktails but I still felt too ill for alcohol so just had a few sips of whatever R had (whisky, old-fashioned, red wine, dessert wine) and a diet coke and lots of tap water for me!

So there’s my week of food. I think I definitely have too much sugar but otherwise I think I do ok as a vegan!

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222 Veggie Vegan- Restaurant review

 Official Website: http://www.222veggievegan.com/

Address: 222 North End Road, West Kensington, London, W14 9NU

Tube station: West Brompton

I came here with a friend who’s thinking of moving to Putney. I’d read a few nice reviews and I was keen to try the ice cream pancake for pudding!

I made a reservation, the place is quite small but pleasant enough with a café vibe and I think all the tables were in use so I’m glad we booked.

I wasn’t going to have a starter as I was saving myself for the pancake but Alex ordered the raw chilled avocado soup and it was such a big portion I helped him out. I had thought that it might taste strongly of raw garlic but no, it was an amazing smooth, creamy avocado soup with some nuttiness and a hint of garlic but not too much. It was super tasty and I probably had half the bowl. My mouth waters at the thought of it and it was such a good choice.

Alex had the burger for main which I was quite jealous of but I rarely order a burger (even though I love them) as I like to be adventurous! It came with loads of chips (which I shared) and some salad and looked yummy.

I went for seitan straganoff which was really nice too- creamy and well seasoned in a nice savoury way and a good sized portion.

We both had the famous ice cream pancake for pudding. I think I’d built it up a bit too much in my head- I found the chocolate and vanilla sauces a little too sweet and the pancake itself a bit mealy and stodgy (it was made with wholemeal flour- I would have made more of a crepe personally) but it was still pretty awesome and compared favourably with many vegan pudding options!

It was good value for money and we also shared a nice organic wine. I will be returning.

A very treaty vegan pizza day

I meant to blog this ON THE DAY (Vegan pizza day- 29th June) but with laptop issues and getting-photos-off-my-phone issues it has been somewhat delayed…

All week I’d been really craving a sweet treat so my lovely husband took me out to get some from Vx.

Official Website: http://www.vegancross.com

Address: 73 Caledonian Road, London, N1 9BT 

Tube station: Kings Cross

We picked up field roast sausages, vegourmet herbario cheese (still my favourite), freedom mallows and lots of biscuits! I also got a slice of cat and the cream blueberry and vanilla cake!

Next we headed to Borough market and R got some coffee beans from Monmouth and we had a couple of espresso samples. We would have bought some take away coffees too but they didn’t do non-dairy milk!

It was 11:30 so time for brunch and we found our way to The Veggie Table

Official Website: http://www.theveggietable.co.uk

Address: Borough Market

Tube station: London Bridge

We picked up some of their vegan burgers in seeded buns. We headed down to the river to eat them.

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They were lovely. Although you can stick anything vegan in a bun with relishes for me, call it a burger and I’ll love it! It seemed to be mainly quinoa with a few vegetables, quite a soft texture but lots of flavour. The salad in the bun was a nice touch and I had red onion marmalade too! I really enjoyed this burger.

Then I had my slice of cake from earlier for pudding.

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It was as excellent as I have come to expect from the wonderful cat and the cream. Moist sponge and lovely icing.

We went to the whiskey exchange and picked up some spirits and bitters to make cocktails from later!

Once home I opened a few of my treats from Vx:

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This delinut dip was amazing! Little breadsticks with a neverending pot of nutty chocolate dip. I finished it with my finger.

Later that day, as it was Vegan Pizza Day, R took me to Surbiton to the Village pizza branch there to get a vegan pepperoni pizza.

Official Website: http://www.villagepizzauk.com/

Address: 7 Claremont Road, Surbiton, KT6 4QR

Station: Surbiton

It was my first visit to a village pizza and I really enjoyed it. It was properly greasy, like takeaway pizzas always used to be. The ‘cheese’ was nicely melted and it had a good taste. The pepperoni was a little bit spicy for me so I might go for mushrooms next time, or fake chicken which is an option!

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We then used our awesome kitchen aid blender to crush ice and make ourselves some cocktails to go with the pizza.

What a lovely day!

Vitao- Organic, Vegan, Raw in Soho

 

Official Website: http://www.vitao.co.uk1741_2

Address: 74 Wardour Street, London, W1F 0TE

Tube station: Piccadilly Circus

 

I’ve been to Vitao (previously known as Vita Organic) several times before, but not for a while. Previously, even on an evening, there had only ever been buffet food on offer. The buffet food was always fantastic and there was always an excellent selection of herbal teas, juices and dairy free milks. This is why my friend and I thought it would make an excellent choice for our non-alcoholic dinner out in wintry-spring. It is fully vegan and about 50% raw too.

When we arrived, we realised that it was now a la carte on an evening. The menu was wonderful so we didn’t mind not having the buffet selection. To drink, my friend Judi had a mango and mint lassi (made with vegan yoghurt) and I had a hot chocolate made with raw cacao and sweetened with coconut nectar and it was amazing!!! I am craving that drink again this morning.

As a starter I had hummus with raw crackers which was lovely and quite a good sized portion. Judi had a salad called something like “Green goddess” [Or maybe I made that up!] which was lots of different leaves in a slightly spicy guacamole dressing. Very tasty- maybe a bit too much chilli and garlic for my taste but I think it was another raw dish!

For my main meal I had a huge bowl of Laksa- which was what I’d fancied all day since a friend had it for lunch. It was warm and spicy without being too hot and had lots of lovely vegetables, pineapple, macadamia nuts and noodles in. Judi had a volcano curry which I didn’t try but she said was nice- it was served in half a cooked butternut squash which looked like a nice idea.

We were really full after big portions so the waitress suggested we ordered some teas to aid digestion- I had a herbal one specifically for digestion and Judi went for fresh mint. We then magically found room for pudding!!!! I had an amazing chocolate ganache tart with cocoa nibs which was creamy and rich and smooth and wonderful. Judi had an amazing mango ‘cheesecake’ I think it was made with nut cream and I really liked that too. I’m often disappointed with raw desserts but not with these!!!

The bill came to £60 for both of us, which is quite reasonable considering what we’d had, although I had remembered it as a ‘cheap’ place but found mains were ~£13 and starters and puddings ~£6 which isn’t as cheap as I remember but for the wonderful food I thought it was completely reasonable.

I would say this place is every bit as good as Saf, just lacking the cocktails and wine list!!! There was a great selection of dishes on the menu many of which I was tempted by, the décor and atmosphere is quite laid back and nice and I will be back soon for another amazing hot chocolate and pudding!!!

Yummy V- a crazy adventure in mock meats!

Official website: www.yummyv.co.uk

Address: 55 Station Road, Harrow, HA1 2TY

Tube station: Harrow and Wealdstone

Last night we decided to explore an area where we were pondering moving to- Harrow. This had to coincide with a nice meal out for me, and I chose yummy v after researching online. I actually saw 3 vegetarian restaurants within a few doors of each other on Station Road in Harrow so this was quite impressive! Yummy V is Chinese, there was an Indian and a big buffet place too. So far so good!!!

It’s quite a small place and has more of the look of a takeaway with seating, but there was a big party in around the large round table, about 12 people! Then there was another group of 4 or 5 at a smaller table and we sat at a rectangular table for 6, even though there were only 2 of us, but no other diners came to sit in, although we saw a couple of people coming in to pick up take-away.

I decided not to bother taking photos as the food looks exactly like the pictures on the walls/website, so I’ve just copied some of those to show what we had. There is one item on the menu that is not vegan- this is the deep fried cheese roll.

Wow. The menu. It’s insane!! So many different kinds of mock meat!!

We went for a sharing platter as a starter. This included:

Spring rolls- very nice, traditional Chinese vegetable spring rolls. Nice large ones.

Won tons- These had some fake fish in. I found it a bit realistic! Eek. But they were good- nice pastry.

Sesame toast- yummy deep fried toast with mashed potato and sesame seeds spread on it. I think there were also chopped up mock prawns in there too. R assures me it was very close to prawn toast but less fishy.

Chicken satay- skewers of fake chicken and a satay sauce. I found the chicken a bit realistic again but managed to eat it and enjoy it in the end, one R said that real meat wasn’t as springy! Satay sauce was lovely!!

Crispy fried seaweed- my favourite!! Loved it!

Some pineapple and cucumber- nice touch (we didn’t have tomato- I don’t like big tomatoes anyway!)!

A dipping sauce- maybe sweet and sour? It was really nice and not like the sweet gloopy Chinese sauces you often get. It had more vinegar and you could make out fruits in it. I assume it was made in-house.

starter

I was so excitable throughout this crazy meaty starter and excited about the main.

I had veggie chicken satay, which I can’t find a picture of but was the veggie chicken and red and green peppers in satay sauce. Bit of a kick but very nice!

R went for lemon chicken. I wasn’t such a fan, sauce was a bit sweet and no vegetables but he seemed to like it!

lemon chicken

On the side we had special fried rice- rice fried with vegetables and as much random fake meat as they could fit in- bits of “beef” (R thought this was really good), “chicken” and “prawn” were identified. Who knows what else?

specialfriedriceIt was a huge portion and we left half of it as we were so full and had also ordered special chow mein

chowmein

Again, chow mein noodles with all the bits of fake meat and fish. The noodles were really good.

All in all a yummy meal, but to be honest I would have preferred vegetables and tofu!! It was a nice adventure, a change of textures but next time I’ll go for a veggie dish, and maybe some crispy veggie duck pancakes!!!

Service was very pleasant- I think it’s family owned. It was also super cheap!! We got all that for about £30!!!

We will return!

 

Mildred’s Vegetarian Restaurant, Soho

Official Website: www.mildreds.co.uk

 

Address: 45 Lexington St, W1F 9AN

 

Tube Station: Piccadilly Circus

 

I’ve been coming to Mildreds since well before I moved to London. It’s got a certain atmosphere- for example, I would never ever bring my parents as they would hate it!! They don’t take reservations (except for in the ‘party room’) so you turn up, get your name down and then stand in the tiny, crowded, noisy bar area with a drink until your table is ready. I was boasting to my friends that Mildred’s have “not been taking reservations since 1989” well before it was trendy!!

Downstairs, the tables are all very close together and there’s a loud buzz of chatter. The last couple of times I’ve been, however, we’ve been seated upstairs which is much nicer! There’s a room that’s a bit like somebody’s front room with big windows to the front, pictures on the walls and about 4 large tables (seating 4-6) Even though I was told a 35-40 minute wait this time, it was nearly an hour but worth the wait for a nice upstairs table!

Staff are friendly, efficient and apologetic for long waits. They always bring jugs of water for the table which is much appreciated, and take orders whenever you’re ready (pretty quickly after you’ve been salivating over the menu for an hour already!)

This time, we got some gyoza to share- 6 little vegetable gyoza dumplings with a soy dipping sauce. Some of the best gyoza I’ve had! Lightly flavoured and lightly fried.

I then went for the burger of the day- mushroom, pea and mixed peppers, which was lovely. Served in a bun with relish, vegan basil mayo and loads of skinny fries (or upgrade to the sweet potato fries) One friend also had the burger and the other one went for a non-vegan burrito, which had a vegan option without the cheese. She really enjoyed it and was very full afterwards. It didn’t stop us all sharing the crumble of the day (apple and peach maybe? Although there were definitely some berries in there too) with soya custard. It was quite a big portion (see the theme!) and very nice. I think it was actually gluten free crumble but whatever it was it was sweet and crunch and there was loads of fruit too!

I have been to Mildred’s so many times that I’ve probably had most of the vegan things on the menu. The mushroom and ale pie is a must- it is so amazing and comes with fries and minted mushy peas! The curries are always good, sausage and mash is ultimate comfort food, burger never disappoints. In fact I’ve never had a bad meal here! Pudding is often the chocolate and raspberry truffle which is amazingly thick and rich and yummy chocolate with fresh raspberries in it. Drinks are lovely. I sometimes have a bellini whilst waiting but went for a bramble last night which was strong and slightly bitter- lovely! I also enjoy their smoothies (a friend last night had the banana, soya milk and maple syrup that had a great fresh taste but didn’t quite go with my bramble) and the raspberry and vanilla lemonade is fab too.

Many of my non-vegetarian friends love Mildreds and the queues (even on a Tuesday night) are testament to it’s awesomeness! It’s a shame I never get around to taking photos.

Saf- vegan, raw, yummy

I used to love Saf when it was in Shoreditch, especially the interesting cocktails and puddings! I was a bit disappointed when it closed down, but we decided to try out the Saf upstairs from Whole Foods market in Kensington.

Initially, it look a bit like a food court as many restaurants are open on the same level, not quite as nice an atmosphere as in Shoreditch but once you’re seated you don’t really notice.

For a starter, I went for their wonderful cashew and pesto ‘cheese’ with rawflaxseed crackers and rocket. It was lovely, although the crackers crumbled a bit. The cashew cheese has a fairly strong spring oniony taste and is unlike any other vegan cheese I’ve had but perfectly pleasant. R had raw dolmades, with cauliflower instead of rice although it still tasted wonderful and just like the real thing!

Cashew Pesto poivre with flaxseed crackers, rocket and balsamic reduction

Raw dolmades with vegan tzatziki

My main was an asparagus chickpea pancake (also gluten free)which was very tasty, especially as pancakes and asparagus are among my favourite things, this dish was basically built for me!

Chickpea crepe with asparagus

R went for a raw pad thai which was ok. It was full of sprouts and cool enoki mushrooms and other raw vegetables. Nice for a raw dish but I still need to find raw food that I prefer to cooked.

Raw pad thai

We each had a nice glass of organic vegan wine and service was pleasant if a little slow.

We didn’t have room for pudding but I did pick up a cat and the cream hazelnut, pear and choc chip cupcake from downstairs for later which was yummy as always.

All in all, I’ll be going back to Saf, trying more of the food and treating myself at Whole foods!!!!