Farm Girl Cafe

I thought I was kind of a Portobello Road expert, as I spend many many many days on this road. But when I was flying back home from Mallorca and a friend pointed out an article where the Farm Girl Cafe was mentioned, I had no idea. It turned out to be on the bit of Portobello Road I almost never go to. You have to cross a street for this bit and I actually always turn around before. Later I did guess where it was as I remember a hidden cafe when I went to a dance class with the kids I look after. I didn’t know the name anymore, but that was the only place I could think of. And when I got there, I was right. That was the cafe. Funny that I knew about it for so long, without knowing it.. if that makes sense?! Haha!

At the Farm Girl Cafe they do serve meat, but they also have a fair choice of vegan options. It was a lovely sunny morning and after a little wait (it’s a very popular place), I was able to sit outside. Their menu is on point, with a ‘V’ behind everything that is vegan. Super handy if restaurants do this. I saw crazy good smashed avocado toast passing by (a lot!), but as I always try to limit my bread intake, I chose the acai bowl. I heard it was good. I asked for a chai latte, but they are not vegan as they use honey. So the waiter suggested to have chai tea, with milk on the side. They have coconut milk, almond milk and hazelnut milk, all from Rude Health. I chose coconut. The acai came in a lovely coconut bowl, but I was a little disappointed with the presentation. They just threw everything in there.. such a shame, because you can really make it look nice with all these toppings (banana, coconut, seeds, granola, almond butter). The tea was super delicious btw, the best chai tea I’ve had! They also do a very famous charcoal latte, but I was afraid I was going to be too full. So I will come back for this for sure. They have 4 vegan all day breakfast options and 3 lunch options (from 11:00). I think that is pretty good! I have to come here more often.

What I really like about the Farm Girl Cafe is that it’s hidden. You don’t expect a cafe, but going through a porch, suddenly there is the most beautiful cafe. Lots of plants, white walls, seats outside, truly lovely. Inside it’s quite spectacular too, with the petrol coloured tiles, high ceiling and the opportunity to sit on a long table, up stairs, overlooking the cafe. There is lots of fresh fruit and veggies near the counter and that looks super nice against the tiles. They created a very unique atmosphere. The service was a little slow at times, but the staff was very friendly though. Something I didn’t like were the prices. It is pretty expensive! My acai bowl was nice, but not he best I’ve had and it lacked presentation. Still all together (acai bowl, chai tea) it was £17,50. This is a little outrageous if you ask me.

WHO? Farm Girls Cafe.
WHERE? 59A Portobello Rd, W11 3DB.
CUISINE? Diverse.
VEGAN? No! (omni)
OVERALL? 7 (Lovely place, good food and amazing tea, but very expensive)

Did you already know the Farm Girl Cafe? Or are you planning to go here now? You do need to try the chocolate ice cream! Please tell me about your experience! You can do this by leaving a comment below, but you can also show me by tagging me on Instagram or by using #PlanetManel. Thank you! X

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The Fields Beneath

You might think: ‘where do I know The Fields Beneath from’?! It probably sounds familiar. This is because they have been in the news a lot, after becoming fully vegan cafe. They used to even serve meat when they opened their doors in 2012, but then after a while they turned vegetarian. When about a year ago the owner became vegan, he decided that it was time for the cafe to become vegan too. They slowly started to swap their things with vegan alternatives and then the last thing they changed was the milk. They hung a note on the door with that there was no longer cows milk served anymore. That note got a lot of attention, because now they were full vegan. So cool! So I had to go here of course. It’s only a few stops away with the train and the cafe is right under the station (Kentish Town West). Coming out of the station, it’s on your right.

When you come in, you immediately see all the amazing looking food in front of you. Actually you just want to have a bite of everything. I had lunch not long before, so I decided to go for a chai latte, but I couldn’t help ordering some toasted banana bread with coconut butter too. I did actually regret having lunch, because I would have loved to try one of the croissants, wraps or burgers. I will come back for sure. The chai latte was very nice. It was made with Oatly Barista, so I didn’t expect anything else. The banana bread was very good. It was very popular they said and I do get why that is. What a lovely treat!

The Fields Beneath is not very big, but there are some seats inside and quite a lot of seats outside. Even with rain you can sit there, as the railway above you will protect you from getting wet. They have some street signs as decoration, what I thought was very cool. It makes it a little industrial and fun, but in combination with the tiles on the counter it’s still very homelike. Great combination. The staff is super friendly and helpful and I felt very welcome. It’s just a lovely little cafe and I wish it was even closer to where I live. I would go here a lot (or maybe it’s good it’s not too close, haha!). In case you didn’t get it yet, I highly recommend this cafe!

WHO? The Fields Beneath.
WHERE? 52a, Prince of Wales Rd, NW5 3LN.
CUISINE? Diverse.
VEGAN? Yes!
OVERALL? 8 (Amazing looking food and a, lovely atmosphere)

Did you already know The Fields Beneath? Or are you planning to go here now? You do need to try the chocolate ice cream! Please tell me about your experience! You can do this by leaving a comment below, but you can also show me by tagging me on Instagram or by using #PlanetManel. Thank you! X

This is my Jam

Maybe you made jam before. Or maybe your grandma or mother made it for you once. Lots of fruit and lots of sugar! Most jam I actually find way too sweet, so I almost never eat it. Whilst I was making cakes and chia puddings with chia seed, I thought I could make jam out if it too. Later I found out that it’s actually quite a thing at the moment. I created a super easy recipe for jam and if you use raw agave nectar (or you can leave it out) it will also be all raw. So healthy! What means you can even enjoy this jam when you’re on a detox. Eat it with toast, cake (maybe not when you’re on a detox, haha!), in your porridge or in your yogurt!

THIS IS MY JAM

Strawberry Jam –

300 gr strawberries
1 tbs agave nectar (optional)
1 tsp lemon juice
3 tbs chia seed

-Take the green bits off the strawberries and bend with the agave nectar and the lemon juice until smooth.
-Add the chia seed and mix well.
-After 10 minutes mix again.
-Put it in a clean glass jar.
-You can keep it in the fridge for about 4-6 days.


Persimmon Jam –

2 big (very) ripe persimmons
1 tbs agave nectar (optional)
1 tsp lemon juice
3 tbs chia seed

-Take the leafs of the persimmons and bend with the agave nectar and the lemon juice until smooth (You can leave the peel on the persimmons).
-Add the chia seed and mix well.
-After 10 minutes mix again.
-Put it in a clean glass jar.
-You can keep it in the fridge for about 4-6 days.

Will you make this jam? Where will you eat it with and which on is your favourite? Please let me know when you’ve tried them. You can do this in a comment below.. or you can tag me or use #PlanetManel on Instagram. Thank you! X

Apple Feast

It’s autumn, what means the apple season is startingggg.. hurray! This means apple pies and apple compote. For that last one I will give you this super nice and simple recipe. Apple compote is so nice to make and you can eat it with so many different things. On the pictures you can see I served it with some yummy porridge. I can tell you, that this makes an awesome breakfast. You can also use it as a filling for pastries or just eat it on its own. Hot or cold.. with yogurt, extra cinnamon or on top of some muesli. Because you can perfectly keep it in the fridge for a while, you can easily make a lot in one go. So do you have an apple tree in the garden or do you know people with an apple tree? You know what to do now. I was given some very big sour apples by somebody and I think those are the best apples to use, but you can basically use any apple. With sweet apples you might want to use less sugar though or leave it out all together.

APPLE FEAST

Serves: 4

2-3 huge apples (peeled/chopped)
2 tbs palm sugar
1/4 cup raisins
1/2 cup water
cinnamon (to taste)

-Put everything (except the cinnamon) in a medium sized pan and let it come to boil. Stir it once in a while.
-Let it then simmer on a low fire for 20-30 min. Until the apples are all gone soft and you have the preferred consistency (the longer you let it simmer the thicker it gets).
-When it’s finished you can add cinnamon to taste.

-This is a basic recipe. Ideas to spice it up:
*Add a little bit of ginger, nutmeg or anise.
*Instead of plain water use 1/2 cup of chai tea.

Are you going to give this recipe a try? Where are you going to serve it with? Please let me know! And I’d love to see some beautiful pictures. Please share them on Instagram by tagging me or by using #PlanetManel! Thank you! X

Press

I was in Soho, on my way to a shop, to get something for my brother. When I was almost at the shop I saw a little juice bar, Press! I never knew there was a Press in this street. It’s not a street where you often go to, so I was lucky to walk passed it. I didn’t have breakfast yet, so I decided to pop in. I had a quick look at the menu and at first sight, I couldn’t spot any non vegan products in their breakfast bowls or in any of the things they offered. They turned out to be almost all vegan. Just apart from the milk in the coffee and some honey (in some juices) unfortunately. You can still request cow’s milk in your coffee here. Though the girl told me that it doesn’t happen that much anymore. I hope they will ditch the cow’s milk and the honey one day, so they can call themselves a 100% vegan juice bar. Would be amazing!

I actually wanted to try the Chia Bowl, but they run out of it unfortunately. So I went for an Acai Bowl. I love acai! I also saw they had a Golden Latte and I thought it was like a turmeric latte. So I ordered that one too, but it turned out to be coffee. Silly me, because it was clearly listed under ‘coffees’. The acai bowl was super nice. It had some lovely toppings too: blueberries, goji berries, granola and almonds. It was very cold, so definitely very perfect for a hot day. The taste was very good, with a great acai flavour. The colour was define really, a beautiful soft purple! I couldn’t drink the coffee, because I really really don’t like coffee. I also didn’t want to give it back, because I didn’t want them to throw it away. I gave it to the lady behind the till in the shop I went for my brother later on. She was so happy and that gave me a good feeling, so not a waste. Press gave me 3 things to try too. One of them was a pineapple juice, to boost your immune system and to hydrate. I found out there is honey in there unfortunately, so I can’t review this. I gave it to the girl sitting next to me at the moment (I’m giving lots of things away today!). They also gave me 2 shots: Detox and Ginger Fireball. The detox shot is with coconut water, lime, ginger, aloe vera activated charcoal (super hot at the moment!) and milk thistle. I’m very excited about this one, it’s very nice! The ginger fireball one contains ginger (50%!!), pineapple and lime. It’s burning good!

Press also offers juice and soup cleanses. For the juice cleanse, you can choose different packages (beginner, intermediate and advanced) and do it 1-5 days. Prices vary from £47-£235. They offer 2 soup cleanses (nourish and energise) and you can also do this 1-5 days. The prices vary from £38-£186. They even have a service that you can get it delivered to your house, every 15 or every 30 days. This means you can do regular cleanses, without any hassle of preparing. A cleanse is a perfect way to give your immune system a boost, to increase your energy and sleep + a lot more benefits. You can find more information about this on their website, where you can also place the orders in case you’re interested.

WHO? Press.
WHERE? 6 Denman St, Soho, W1D 7HX.
CUISINE? Juice Bar.
VEGAN? No! (vegetarian, but almost all vegan)
OVERALL? 7 (Very good breakfast, nice cleanses, but a shame they do cow’s milk and honey.)

Did you already know the Press? Or would you like to go there now? Please let me know when you’ve tried it! Especially when you tried one of their juice or soup cleanses! You can do this by leaving a comment below, but you can also show me by tagging me on Instagram or by using #PlanetManel. Thank you! X

Vitamin B12 / Croissants

VITAMIN B12
Protein and B12 are probably the most bespoke subjects when it comes to veganism. A lot of omnivores are using these 2 to make a point and an excuse to eat meat and other animal products. B12 is something no human or animal can make. B12 is a bacteria that grows on sugar. You get B12 by fermenting blackstrap molasses (from sugar cane or beet). B12 used to be in the ground and because the grass-eating animals got their B12 though that way, it’s believed that there is B12 in meat and dairy naturally. Nowadays the ground isn’t rich in B12 anymore and so we need to supplement. Animals are also supplemented. But why would you get B12 through killing and eating an animal if you can just eat it straight? A lot of products are enriched with B12 now, like plant milks and meat substitutes. To make sure you get enough B12, you can take extra by taking a B12 supplement. I use the B12 of the brand Solgar. This is a trustworthy brand, vegan and they don’t use any crap. They have B12 in little capsules, but I prefer the little pills with cherry flavour, that melt in your mouth. I only take it twice a week though. I feel that it’s enough for me, knowing I do consume some enriched products too.

CROISSANTS
One of the things I kind of missed when going vegan were croissants. Not like I had croissant that much before or that I was totally crazy about them, but once in a while it was always a nice treat. Especially when making a big breakfast or brunch (for Easter or something). But in most croissants they use butter. So that wasn’t an option anymore. Luckily there are these lovely inventions of croissant dough in a pack. I always loved these croissants anyway, because they are so sticky and I like that. So now I use those. Here in the UK I always have them from the brand ‘Jus Rol’ and they are delicious and easy to make. I often make them in the weekend when my boyfriend and I are waking up together and have a lazy morning. I like to roll in some cheese, pesto or even some pieces of dark chocolate. So yum! You can vary endlessly and it’s all so yum. I think cheesy is my favourite though. So whenever you need some croissants for a brunch or just because you’re craving some.. enjoy these ones!

Did you already know these products or are you going to try them after reading this? Please let me know or show me on Instagram by using #PlanetManel. Would you like me to test and review your product(s) or do you have any suggestions? Please send me a message via CONTACT! It can be anything (food, drinks, beauty..) as long as it’s vegan. Thank you! X

What I eat in a Day! #3

I thought let’s do another ‘What I eat in a Day’ post. I often get questions about this and people always seem to be interested in what I (do) eat. I also like to show people that we, vegan, can just have normal and delicious food. So here we go!

I just picked a random day: I always start my day with a big glass of luke warm water, the juice of half a lemon and 1 tsp of apple cider vinegar. This isn’t something I love drinking, but it gives me a good feeling as it gives me energy and a boost of vitamin C. It also has a cleansing effect and for me it’s perfect to start my day. About an hour later I drink my green smoothie. This is a smoothie with 2 very ripe bananas, a big handful of spinach, 1/2 tsp spirulina, 1/2 tsp wheatgrass and 1 tsp of linseed. I use a little bit of water to blend it. I had this with 1/2 a medium sized papaya. When I got to work they had a bowl full of delicious fresh plums from the garden they went to at the weekend. So I just had to  snack on those in the morning. So delicious! It makes me think of my childhood as we had 2 plum trees, full of plums, in the garden where I grew up. A little later in the morning I was quite hungry weird enough, so I made myself a small bowl of porridge. As a topping I used some strawberries, coconut, cinnamon and a little bit op agave nectar. Just to keep me going until lunch time.

For lunch (around 14:00) I made myself a little chickpea salad with 1/2 an avocado (+ salt/pepper/lemon juice/a drop of sesame seed oil and a little bit of smoked paprika), a sweet potato from the oven and some sugar snaps on the side. I love lunches like this. They are filling, nutritious and just delicious. I had my lunch fairly late today as I had the porridge around 10:30. Normally I will eat porridge around 9:00ish, but the plums were in the way there.. haha! I wasn’t actually hungry all afternoon, but I did get myself al little treat at Starbucks later on (around 16:00). My ultimate treat there is a Green Tea Latte with soy milk (and some cinnamon on the top). I love it! Unfortunately they put sugar in there, so I only have it now and then. In the morning I made my Nori Nori recipe, so I could take some pictures for the recipe I will share here soon. They are little wraps from nori sheets, filled with spinach, mushrooms, bell pepper, alfalfa and tempeh. So as I made them, I had those for dinner, with some extra spinach on the side. It’s definitely one of m favourite recipes, so tasty and very healthy! I wasn’t feeling hungry in the evening, so I only had a cup of bedtime tea a little bit before I went to sleep. Also I drink about 2-3 litres of water a day.

Do you eat similar to me? Or do you have a whole different routine? I’d love to hear about it. Please let me know in the comments below or show me by using #PlanetManel on Instagram. Thank you! X

Cakefast

img_7258Cake for breakfast.. don’t we all dream of that?! Chocolate-peanut butter tarts for breakfast.. reality! Yes really.. I invented these very yummy breakfast tarts for you. It’s super healthy, with the oats, bananas and raw cacao (of course you can also use regular cacao powder). It doesn’t contain any refined sugar and it’s incredible tasty! To keep it healthy, make sure you use only quality products and no products with sugar or any additives inside (especially talking about the peanut butter here). It will keep you going the whole morning (you might want to eat 2), so why not start your day with a breakfast tart?! Of course you can also make these tarts for a birthday party or any occasion that requires cake.. I can thinks of tons of occasions! So from now on you can start your day with chocolate.. you know what to do this weekend!

img_7260CAKEFAST

Serves: 6-8

base
-1/2 cup oats
-1/2 cup soft dates (pitted)
-3 tbs peanut butter
-2 tbs coconut oil (melted)
filling
-3 ripe bananas
-1 cup oatly milk
-2 tbs cacao powder (raw)
-1/2 cup water
-1 tbs agar agar
-1 tbs chia seeds
-1 tbs agave nectar
topping
-fresh fruit
-raw cacao nibs
-oats
-chia seed

img_7259-Put all the base ingredients in a food processor and blend until it’s sticky.
-Divide the base evenly over the tart shapes and press well with the back of a spoon. Put it in the fridge and make the filling.
-Blend all the ingredients for the filling (except for the water, the agar agar and the chia seeds) until smooth.
-Put the water and the agar agar in a sauce pan and turn it low when it starts to boil.
-Then mix in the filing and the chia seeds very well. Let it boil for about 1 minute.
-Divide the filling over the tart shapes and put it in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
-Decorate the tarts with fresh fruit, cacao nibs, oats and chia seeds.

Would you like to eat cake for breakfast? Who doesn’t right? Oh and did I mention it’s very popular with children too? Please let me know when you’ve tried it. You can do this in a comment below.. or you can tag me or use #PlanetManel on Instagram. Thank you! X

Messapica

Quite close to me is a very lovely restaurant, called Messapica. I walk pass it twice a day and I always wandered what they have to offer. Then a while ago I got a take away menu of them in the door and I saw very nice potential vegan pizza’s on there. I couldn’t only walk pass it now, so I decided to go in and ask about their vegan options. About that I want to mention that I got treated super nicely and they are very helpful. We looked at the menu together and I could ask questions. I wish every restaurants or cafe would be as helpful as they are here. They had a reasonable amount of vegan options, but nothing very different form other places though.

They offer a lot of juices and smoothies, which are (apart from one with whey powder) all vegan. They are very happy to take the whey powder out, but it might be just easier to choose one of their other flavours. They have avocado on toast and they offer a few types of bread you can choose from (sourdough, white, wholemeal). It originally comes with cheese (what is not clear on the menu), so make sure you mention you want a vegan version. You can also have toast with jam (they have several flavours) or marmite. They als do porridge and they are happy to make that with a plant based milk (they have almond and soy). The porridge comes with a fruit compote, which is vegan. I chose the Breakfast smoothie and the avocado on sourdough toast. It arrived quickly and it looked very good. One big downside is that the smoothie comes in plastic, event hough it’t not a take away. The smoothie was nice though, a little milky, but that does make it very soft. The avocado toast came with very fresh rucola and lime juice. That was a very nice combination. The lime really gives it something extra, very fresh. I really enjoyed my breakfast and I’m very happy to recommend it. For lunch and dinner you can also go to Messapica. They do salads with dairy every day, but there are always 2-3 vegan options. After 17:00 they also do pizza’s. I’m really curious to try them and I will soon. Note that they don’t do vegan cheeses and that the gluten free pizza is not vegan, it has egg in it. Something else I really liked, but what is not very clear on the picture, is the cutlery. The forks are quite big and unusual to see, loved it!

I really really love their interior. Especially the chairs, the white painted wooden walls and the floor. The whole style is slightly industrial, so lovely. At the till you can see all the salads you can choose form and they also sell some cakes etc. but unfortunately they don’t have any vegan cakes. They do sell 3 flavours of the ichor chocolate though, what was surprising and very nice. They also sell the ‘Eat Real’ crisps (love this brand!), several drinks including ‘Mangajo’, but also olives and really cool big pasta’s. All yum! After a little chat I recommended them to offer Oatly Barista too and I was really pleased how serious they took this.

I want to thank Messapica for my lovely breakfast!

WHO? Messapica.
WHERE? 109 Chamberlayne Rd, NW10 3NS.
CUISINE? Italian.
VEGAN? No! (omni)
OVERALL? 8 (Few good and tasty vegan options, very  helpful staff and a lovely interior.)

Did you already know Messapica? Or are you planning to go here now? Please tell me about your experience! You can do this by leaving a comment below, but you can also show me by tagging me on Instagram or by using #PlanetManel. Thank you! X

Very Berry

img_7240Are you somebody who is in a rush a lot of mornings? Is breakfast always something what is skipped because of that? Everybody knows it’s bad to skip your breakfast. So you should always eat something, but it’s tricky sometimes.. everybody knows that too! So with this on-the-go-breakfast, you only have to put all the ingredients in the blender and then you put it in a to go cup. Then you can drink it on your way to work, whilst being on the train or bus for example. You could make it the evening before, but there is a possibility that it’ll be quite thick the next day. To make it go faster, but without it ending up being to thick, try putting all the ingredients (but the milk and water) in a container the evening before. This way you don’t have to measure anything the next day and your breakfast will be ready within 2 minutes. Good luck and enjoy!

img_7255VERY BERRY

Serves: 1

-300 ml oat milk
-6 soft dates
-1 cup mixed berries
-1 banana
-3 tbs oats
-1 tsp chia seed
-1 tsp lemon juice

-Put all the ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth.

If you are somebody who’s always in a hurry in the mornings, this might be the perfect recipe for you. Please let me know when you’ve tried it. You can do this in a comment below.. or you can tag me or use #PlanetManel on Instagram. Thank you! X