Tibits

Apparently I didn’t now about one really nice restaurant, called Tibits. No idea how I didn’t know about it, but I’m happy I do now. When my best friend Nienke, from the Netherlands, was visiting me, I thought it will be nice to go here and explore it together. I knew it was a buffet and so this way it would be a great way to try lots of different things. It was Nienke’s first time in London, so after a long morning of showing her all the touristy must see places, we went to Tibits for lunch. We always have so much fun together, but we made sure that this lunch was one to never ever forget.

So like I said, it’s a buffet. They have lots of nice food and though it’s a vegetarian restaurant, almost everything is vegan. Just make sure to check to be sure. They have many different options and they look all very yummy. I think I made sure I tried everything that was vegan. I just got a little bit of everything. When collecting our lunch we were already drooling over the sticky toffee dessert we saw, but we decided to first eat the food on our plate. At Tibits you pay by weight, the same as in Ethos. So after you get what you want, you go to the till, they weigh the food on your plate and that’s what you pay for. I think they have more reasonable prices than Ethos though. Also, after eating everything, I can say that the food is better than at Ethos too. The food was delicious actually. Then we wanted to have that sticky toffee pudding, but the problem was that all the cakes they sell separately, are vegan too. So first we chose 3. A cake each and 1 to share. But then we couldn’t choose which one.. because they have chocolate-pear, lemon, coconut-mango and apple pastry.. how can you choose? I don’t know how other people do it, because you can’t! So we ended up buying all options! Oops! Everybody was looking at us and we had tears of laughing rolling down our cheeks. Some people said they will do it too next time. The influencers we are! They were so delicious, but funny enough, the sticky toffee cake ended up being my favourite one. The chocolate one was ver nice too, as it wasn’t crazy sweet and you could actually taste the chocolate. We obviously couldn’t eat everything, but the staff was friendly enough to give us a doggy bag. Hurray for desserts!

Tibits is a beautiful restaurant, in a lovely little street. It’s just off Regent Street, close to Piccadilly Circus. It’s quite a big restaurant, with seats around the buffet area, but you can also go downstairs. They’ve done a lovely job with the interior, mixing up different styles, but creating one lovely atmosphere. The staff is very friendly and helpful and it just makes it a perfect place to have lunch or dinner (or to try desserts) when in central London. Make sure to try the sticky toffee cake though, you pay this one by weight too. I’ll be back for sure.

WHO? Tibits.
WHERE? 12-14 Heddon St, Mayfair, W1B 4DA.
CUISINE? Buffet.
VEGAN? No! (vegetarian)
OVERALL? 8 (Great looking restaurant, good food, reasonable prices and very yummy desserts.)

Did you already know Tibits? 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

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Lentil Love

img_8312Who likes Indian food? Me! Filling food, with lovely spices.. it smell amazing and it tastes even better. I really like Indian food, also because a lot is already vegan or vegetarian and it’s easy to veganise. This dish has lots of lentils, what means lots of protein! It’s perfect as a post work out meal. Another benefit, as this recipe serves 6, you can easily divide it in smaller meals and freeze them separately. This way you always have a nice nutritious meal ready. Or if you have a lot of people coming over?! Double the recipe, cook a lot of rice and toast some pita breads. I’m sure people will love this. And also, the main ingredient in this dish are lentils and they are super cheap (buy in bulk). You can eat this on its own, with rice or with pita bread. Oh and it’s perfect now it’s getting colder. What a super dish!

img_8314LENTIL LOVE

Serves: 6

-2 cups red lentils
-4 cups water
-1 small onion (chopped)
-2/3 cup chopped tomatoes
-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (ground)
-1 tsp cumin (ground)
-1 tsp coriander (ground)
-1 tsp turmeric (ground)
-1/2 tsp cumin seeds
-1 tsp mustard seeds
-1/2 small red onion (finely chopped)
-1 tbs coconut oil
-1 cup coconut milk
-salt/pepper (to taste)

img_8313-Put the lentils, the small onion, the cayenne pepper, the cumin (ground), the coriander, the turmeric, the chopped tomatoes and the water in a big pan. Let it boil for 2 minutes and then let it simmer for 30 minutes.
-Fry the mustard and the cumin seeds in the coconut oil on a medium heat. Cover the pan with a lid and wait until the mustard seeds are starting to pop.
-Add the onion (finely chopped) and keep stirring it while frying it for about 3-5 minutes.
-Then add this mixture to the lentils and add the coconut milk.
-Add salt/pepper to taste.
-Mix it well and let it simmer for 15 minutes.
-Serve with rice and/or pita bread.

Are you a fan of Indian food? Are you going to make this for yourself or for a big party? Please let me know or show me by using #PlanetManel on Instagram. Thanks you! X

Yummy Mummy

Only 4 more nights until Halloween! I’m not a huge fan of this celebration myself, but I do like to create recipes for it, haha! And I’m sure if you’re really into it, you want to eat something that adds to the theme. Especially with children it’s a nice thing to do. This recipe is not only fun to make and to look at, but I tested it on children and they love it. If your children are a little bit older, then they will be happy to help you too. The process is rather fun, especially wrapping it up in the end. You can serve this with several veggies or a salad. For some more Halloween recipe inspiration, go check out last years recipe: Creepy Tasty. Have fun!

YUMMY MUMMY

Serves: 4

filling
-1 cup veggie mince (I used Fry’s)
-1 cup chickpeas (from can)
-1 carrot (chopped)
-1 cup bread crumbs
-1/2 cup soy milk (unsweetened)
-1/2 onion (finely chopped)
-2 cloves of garlic (minced)
-2 tbs nutritional yeast
-1 tsp oregano
-1 tsp parsley
-salt/pepper (to taste)
-50 gr cheese (grated) (I used the VioLife original)
mummy coat
-1 pastry sheet (I used Jus Roll)
eyes
-cheese
-nori sheet

-food processor
-oven

-Preheat the oven at 200C + grease the inside of a cake tin.
-Put the veggie mince, the chickpeas, the carrot, the bread crumbs, the soy milk, the nutritional yeast, the oregano, the parsley and a bit of salt/pepper in the food processor and pulse until it’s a little sticky and mixed. Don’t make it too smooth.
-Fry the onions and the garlic for 2-3 minutes and then add everything from the food processor. Fry this all together for about 5 minutes. Let it cool down.
-In the meantime cut the pastry sheet: Cut off 10 cm of the pastry sheet for the base. Then cut the rest in strokes of 1 cm.
-Knead the filling into the shape of the base and start wrapping the little strokes around it. If you stretch the strokes a little bit, you will be able to use 1 stroke, 2 times.
-Put it in the oven for about 35-40 minutes (until golden brown).
-For the eyes I used a little piece of a nori sheet and extra cheese. Cut out 2 little circles of the nori sheet, stick it on a piece of cheese and cut out the cheese. It’s better to add the eyes when it’s finished, rather than putting them in the oven too.

Are you going to make this recipe for next Tuesday or maybe the Creepy Tasty instead? Please show me all your lovely creations, I really love seeing those! Send me a picture, tag me or use #PlanetManel on Instagram. Thank you! X

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

The 13TH

It’s Friday the 13th.. ah oh! Haha! Is there anybody here who believes in the myth? I don’t! Luckily, because I’ll be flying to the Netherlands today. I can’t wait! And to make this day a great day for everybody.. I present you a raw salad with 13 different vegetables. And if that isn’t healthy enough, the probiotic tahini-miso dressing is super good for your tummy. If you make sure that the dressing ingredients you use are all raw too, your salad will be a 100% raw. This makes a great healthy lunch, even when you’re on a detox. If you’re not into raw salads that much, you can of course cook some of the vegetables for a bit. It will still be very good for you. I like raw salads though, because they make you feel very full, but you still feel very energetic at the same time.

THE 13TH

serves: 1

handful of spinach
1 stalk of celery (chopped)
1 tomato (chopped)
1/4 cucumber (sliced)
1/2 carrot (grated)
3 mini beetroots
1/3 bell pepper (sliced)
handful of sugar snaps
2 baby corns
1 big mushroom (sliced)
1/2 courgette (spiraled)
1 floret of broccoli (chopped)
handful of alfalfa

dressing:
1 tbs tahini
1 tbs sesame oil
1 tbs white miso
1 tbs agave nectar
1 tsp fresh ginger (grated)
1/2 lemon (juice)
1/4 tsp harissa
salt/pepper to taste

-Put all the vegetables on a big plate or in a big bowl.
-Mix all the dressing ingredients. I liked to use an empty glass jar for this. I put everything in there and then I shake it until all well combined.

Do you like raw salads? So healthy! 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

Franco Manca

I actually wanted to go to the Franco Manca on Westbourne Grove, but because I had limited time and needed to get some dresses before my holiday, I decided to go to the one in the Westfield (White City). Franco Manca must have grown a lot in relatively short time, because though I heard about it a few years ago, all of a sudden I see them everywhere. They have 38 restaurants in total now, whilst only starting in 2008. Franca Manca make their pizza’s with a sourdough base. Though it does have some gluten, it is easier to digest this way. I saw a lot of great looking pizza’s on Instagram and some good reviews. So I wanted to try this for myself and to see if they have some vegan options of course.

The waitress explained to me that you can choose your pizza (the have 6 options) and then add the topping you like. Some pizza’s already have lots of toppings, but the first pizza only includes the base, the sauce, oregano and garlic. So no cheese too. This makes it a perfect vegan pizza to begin with. They have 2 huge signs with their toppings and you can choose whatever you like. I went for the courgette, olives, onions and some spinach. My pizza was in front of me very fast. This must be thanks to the 2 huge pizza ovens. It looked amazing, quite big too! I started with the crust first. It was soft, but with a slight crisp. I expected to taste a lot more of the sourdough taste, but even though you could taste it was different, it wasn’t that obvious. The vegetables on top were perfect and very tasty. If you love garlic, then this is your pizza, because it has a big garlic taste. I liked it! The base in the middle was good from the bottom, but it was slightly undercooked on the top. This was a shame. I couldn’t finish the pizza because of this, because it was quite heavy this way.

Apart from the pizza and some small things (olives and bread) there aren’t that much vegan options, but in their defence, they do not have a very big menu. They do have one desert for vegans though, what is the very familiar vegan dessert: the sorbet. I didn’t try it though and I do appreciate that at least they have something. The Franco Manca in Westfield is a very beautiful restaurant I must say. Because of the very big windows from floor to ceiling, it’s super light and they have 2 huge pizza ovens (the red and the yellow one, here on the picture ^) in their open kitchen. I also really like their interior, it’s very industrial and it has high ceilings. I also really like the chairs, they really add to the style.

WHO? Franco Manca.
WHERE? Westfield White City, Ariel Way, W12 7GA.
CUISINE? Italian.
VEGAN? No! (omni)
OVERALL? 7 (Nice pizza, but a shame it wasn’t cooked properly in the middle, great interior)

Did you already know Franco Manca? 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

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

Hackney Fresh

When my friend and I walked back to the station after reviewing the Temple of Hackney we walked passed Hackney Fresh. We went inside, because it said vegan and organic. Then you just simply have to go in! It’s not a crazy big store (but also not small!), but they do have a lot of stuff. I got so excited looking at all the stuff. One of the first things I saw were vegan croissants! Real proper looking vegan croissants! Plain, almond and also some pain au chocolat. This is something what is still very hard to get your hands on. This is actually the first place I’ve been that sells croissants like this. I had to get them.. obviously! Even though I was so full from the dinner still. It’s nice to know that they’re made very locally, the baker lives above the shop. Can you go any more local? There are fresh croissants every morning (from 8:30).

Hackney Fresh is an independent family business, established in 2014. So it’s still quite new. They want to transform the way people think about fine provisions and sustainable food. They sell so many things. Several cheeses, meat substitutes, cereals, snacks (healthy and not so healthy..), croissants (!), buckets of peanut and cashew butter, a variety of plant-based milks, fresh organic fruits and vegetables, supplements, beauty products and even some very nice animal postcards. I got one with a sloth mum and baby. Because when I see a sloths I want it. At first you would say the whole store is vegan, but they actually do sell some animal products too. It’s a very very small section though. I think this is very unfortunate though, because I think as an all vegan store they would be even more attractive and very new as they’re a lot bigger as the Green Bay vegan supermarket. I think they’ll be the biggest 100% vegan store if they decide to go all vegan.

Hackney Fresh is not only a shop to get all your vegan groceries, but they also serve coffee, tea and fresh juice. So a perfect place to get a take away breakfast for example. It’s such a shame it’s not a little closer to me, because I’m sure I’d go here all the time. They actually remind me a lot of Portobello Wholefoods, where I go a lot too. I love to see places like this more as they’re super handy for if you don’t always have time to go to the Whole Foods Market and need some certain products you can’t get in the local supermarkets. I think we should definitely support places like this! They were so friendly here too btw. Lots of help and nice chats, so appreciated!

WHO? Hackney Fresh.
WHERE? 334 Mare St, Hackney, E8 1HA.
CUISINE? Supermarket.
VEGAN? No! (omni)
OVERALL? 8 (Love the many many vegan products + love the croissants.)

Did you already know Hackney Fresh? 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

Pizza Express

I’ve been to Pizza Express quite a lot, but that is years ago. I was very excited to discover that they started offering vegan mozzarella. So I decided I needed to see this with my own eyes and very important too: taste this! I went to the Pizza Express in Camden. The day I went it was raining and as I hate umbrellas (cuz of loving the rain), I was a little soaked when I arrived. When I came in they stared at me like they didn’t know what to do with me. I wasn’t sure if this was because of being a little wet, or because they didn’t expect customers. It was just been 12:00, maybe a little early, but I always like to go on times it’s less busy, because then there is more time for answering my questions etc. I asked about the vegan options, but they didn’t really know what to say. So I chose a table and started to look at the menu myself.

There was a special vegan pizza, but you can swap ingredients around, until you have the pizza you like. This was the only thing the guy was able to tell me. Later I was told by somebody else that the special changes every 3-4 months and if it’s selling well, they stay on the menu. This made me decide to order this pizza, because we have to support vegan options (so you know what to order at Pizza Express now..haha!). It had onion, olives, artichoke, asparagus and the vegan mozzarella. It looked nice and as I love all these veggies, it was a good choice anyway. The pizza was tasty and I definitely enjoyed it, though it’s not a pizza I directly come back for. It’s perfect for if you’re going with somebody who isn’t vegan, because then you can still enjoy a good vegan pizza, whilst not have to go to a vegan place. I’m super happy that Pizza Express made this change and I really hope they keep at least one already vegan pizza on the menu. The pizza is not the only vegan things they have. They also have a salad called ‘Leggera Superfood Salad’ and this one is vegan too. I really want to try this one too on day. Anybody who had it already?

The Pizza Express in Camden is not really big, but it has nice big windows and the possibility to sit outside (when it’s not raining..). They also have a big mirror on one wall, I guess to make it look bigger. anyway.. it’s handy for if you want to check if there are any veggies stuck in your teeth, haha! Though I was pleased with my pizza, I thought the service here was really bad. I don’t know if all of them had a bad day or something, but nobody was really helpful. There was one guy who was new (his second day!), so I can’t blame him, but the rest had no menu knowledge. I only got short unsure answers, without a lot of information. I really had to pull it out of them and then they had to ask 3 times in the meantime. And there were some other things too, but let’s not be only negative, because there are a lot of Pizza Express restaurants and I’m sure this is not everywhere.

WHO? Pizza Express.
WHERE? 85 Parkway, NW1 7PP.
CUISINE? Italian.
VEGAN? No! (omni)
OVERALL? 7 (Nice pizza, few other vegan options, but not very helpful staff.)

You probably know Pizza Express already, but did you try their vegan pizza yet? 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

Mexican Bowl

img_7505Mexican food is so satisfying. It has lots of veggies, it has beans, avocado, tortilla’s and it’s spicy. The Mexican kitchen is yummy! Now let’s all put these delicious things in one bowl. And with pieces of crispy tortilla’s, you can scoop the goodness out of the bowl and into your mouth! How does that sound? The ingredient list seems a bit long and maybe it is, because they’re actually little recipes in one bowl. It does take a little time to make it, but it’s very rewarding and I’m sure you’ll be very satisfied when this colourful bowl is in front of you. The recipe is for one person, but you can easily double the recipe and eat it with your lover or a friend! What about making it together?

img_7498MEXICAN BOWL

Serves: 1

-2 tortilla wraps
-100 gr mince
-1/4 onion
-1/4 tsp smoked paprika
-1/4 tsp thyme
-1/4 tsp salt
-1/4 tsp chilli flakes
-2 tomatoes
-bunch coriander (chopped)
-1/4 small red onion (chopped)
-1/4 tsp lime juice
-1/2 avocado (smashed)
-1/4 tsp lemon juice
-1/2 clove garlic
-1/4 iceberg lettuce (chopped)
-1/6 cucumber (chopped)
-3 baby corns (chopped)
-1/2 cup black beans
-1/2 corn cob
-1/4 jalapeño pepper (sliced)
-1 tbs olive oil
-salt/pepper (to taste)

img_7506-Preheat the oven at 180C.
-Cut the tortilla’s in 4 pieces and make them wet. Put them in the oven for about 6-8 min. Let them cool down.
-Mix the tomatoes with the onion, some jalapeño pepper, the coriander and 1/4 tsp on lime juice. Add some salt to taste.
-Mix the avocado, 1/4 of lemon juice, the garlic with some salt and pepper to taste.
-Fry the onion in a pan with 1/2 tbs of olive oil. Add the garlic and then the mince. Fry this all, on a high fire, together until the mince is hot and has a slightly darker colour. Add the smoked paprika, the thyme, the chilli flakes and some salt and pepper to taste and fry again for only 1-2 minutes.
-Mix the iceberg lettuce, the cucumber and the baby corns with 1/2 tbs of olive oil and add some salt to taste.
-Let the corn cob boil in water for 5 minutes.
-Warm the black beans for just a minute on high fire in a pan.
-Put it all in a nice big bowl. Serve with the pieces of crispy tortilla.

Do you like Mexican food? Are you going to try this recipe? 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, so I can see it. Thank you! X