Gracelands

img_7532I went to Gracelands on a very stormy day. The storm was so crazy, that they put a table and door stoppers to stop the door from opening all the time and the storm blowing everything away inside. Luckily, you can also go into Gracalands via the back. There is a building called ‘Graclands Yard‘ and I sometimes go there with the baby I look after, for a music class. They also do yoga classes, pilates classes and lots more.. it’s worth taking a look! So I came in via the back. This way you basically come in via the kitchen, but it’s allowed to go via there any time. Very convenient in these extreme weather conditions I must say.

img_7530I ordered a Chai tea with soy milk and an organic porridge with fruit compote. They  normally make it with cow’s milk, but I asked if it was possible to have it with almond milk and that was totally fine. They were super easy going. I was very curious about the fruit compote. The tea came first and I did have to wait a little longer for my porridge though. It was a little busy, must have been all people who tried to find shelter from the storm. It was worth the wait though, because the porridge looked lovely and it was very tasty! I really liked that it was made with whole rolled oats. This way it’s a bit more chewy. I like my porridge like that. It makes me think about the way my grandma makes it. The fruit compote was super tasty too. It was pear, grapes and maybe even some other fruit too. It had these yummy winter spices, what was a super nice combination with the warm porridge. The tea was from Pukka and I like that tea a lot. Lovely breakfast all together! You can also get salads and I’m sure they can make you something vegan in case you’re there for lunch.

img_7531Gracelands is quite a big cafe. It has lots of big vintage tables and chairs and it is perfect for if you want to take your laptop and work for a bit. It’s quite close to my flat, so I might have breakfast here more often and work there in the morning. Because of there are children classes and a play corner for children, there are a lot of mums and nannies with their children. So be prepared for that though. On the other hand, if you have children yourself, it’s a lovely cafe to go to! The style is very vintage and I think it’s a very nice style for a cafe. The front is already very nice, with the colours and the little lights hanging in the windows. They sure created a nice atmosphere. I think they could have done even better though, as here and there it does look a bit messy or something. The staff is very friendly and the food is nice, so worth a go!

WHO? Gracelands.
WHERE? 118 College Rd, NW10 5HD.
CUISINE? Cafe.
VEGAN? No! (omni)
OVERALL? 8 (Very nice porridge and Pukka tea + good for families or working)

Do you know Gracelands already? Or are you going to try it now? Please let me know! You can do this by leaving a comment below. You can also show me by tagging me on Instagram or by using #PlanetManel. Thank you! X

Cosy Winter

41eb821f-83be-4ba4-be89-81a31ab65ec9It’s coooldd!! I don’t like cold.. my body is just not made for the cold. I swear I’ll move to a warmer country one day. Until then, I better find way s to keep myself warm. What do you think of some warm comforting porridge? Sounds good, doesn’t it?! This week I present you a sweet, but fruity porridge. Porridge is a great way to start your morning (or your afternoon.. or you evening..). It’s filling and it’s energy releases slowly, what makes sure it keeps you going for longer. So if you have a busy day ahead, porridge really is the best. This porridge is very yummy, with a lovely apricot sauce. Apricots contain vitamin A and that’s important, especially in the winter. Without vitamin A, you can’t absorb vitamin D. We get vitamin D from sunlight, but as there isnt’t sufficient sunlight in the winter you need to try to be in the sun as much as you can. However, if you do not have enough vitamin A in your body, you’re wasting your chance to take in vitamin D. So pour lots of this goodness over your porridge.

c715d1cf-1a7f-40ec-8781-b8aeb5c863adCOSY WINTER

Serves: 1

1/2 cup oats
1 cup almond milk
3 apricots
2 dates
1/2 tbsp dried coconut
1 tsp agave nectar
1/8 tsp cinnamon
extra apricots
almonds

-Pour the milk into a sauce pan and add the oats. Mix well on a medium fire until it gets thick.
-Blend the apricots, the agave nectar and the cinnamon in the food processor until a nice thick sauce.
-Put the porridge in a nice bowl. Add the extra apricots, the almonds, the dates and the coconut and then pour over the nice apricot sauce.

Do you like eating porridge in the morning? And do you prefer to eat it in the winter or can you enjoy it just as much in the summer? If you’re going to make this recipe, please let me know in the comments below or show me on Instagram by tagging me or by using #PlanetManel. Thank you! X

26 Grains

13036346_1134885799888855_1507236329_oMy dear friend Pavla told me about 26 Grains. As she is a huge porridge fan, she always wanted to go there and we said to each other we would go together. But it never happened and now she is on an amazing holiday for 3 months(Dubai, Bali and Sri Lanka.. Let’s pretend I’m  not jealous). Anyway, I decided to go alone as I wanted to see what it was like so I could share it with you. 26 Grains is all about.. I think you can guess.. Grains! They find inspiration from Scandinavian cooking traditions and spices. Their bowls of Hygge (Scandinavian, and with no direct English translation. But it means something like ‘coziness’, ‘relaxing with friends and loved ones’. What I think sounds so sweet and lovely that I don’t understand that there is not a word for this in every language.) are made out of healthy and fresh ingredients. Using grains as a base they then add Scandinavian spices and toppings in the end.

13010218_1134885853222183_857921277_o26 Grains is, like the WildFoodCafe I wrote about earlier, in Neal’s Yard. Inside and out it looks simple and pure, the kind of atmosphere what I expected it to be. I like their black sign, the plants on the green wooden doors and the cactuses and little paintings of veggies inside, but the only thing is that it’s very small. Inside there is only space for I think about 12 people. And I think even with only 12 people it will be a bit crazy. They do have some seats outside, which is lovely on a nice sunny day of course. One of the things I didn’t like too much were the seats, which are quite small(or maybe my bum is just too big) wooden blocks. They look nice, but it’s far from comfortable.

13016480_1134885846555517_132347541_oNot everything on their menu is vegan, so make sure to mention you are vegan when you are. I ordered the Hazelnut and Butter porridge + a green smoothie and as it was a bit busy I sat down near the wall where they created a wooden bar to create more seats. I looked around to see what other people ordered(so curious, but I know you all do it..) and I must say everything looks super nice, complete with yummy toppings and even flowers. I was very excited for them to serve mine. Even though they have a tiny kitchen I didn’t have to wait very long before a beautiful looking and smelling bowl was in front of me. It was delicious! Very filling and just the right amount and consistency. The green smoothie was btw also very good, simple, but tasty and a perfect combination with my porridge. I liked the refreshing taste of the smoothie with the rich nutty flavours in my porridge.

I think 26 Grains is a perfect place to have a late breakfast together with a friend, family member or your lover. It’s a great start of a day walking around in Covent Garden. Or why not go for lunch before seeing a musical in one of the nearby theatres?!

If you check their website, you can see they/re not only a lovely little restaurant, but they also do catering. So in case you need an original catering company with spicy options, check them out!

13016744_1134885826555519_126223414_oDo you know 26 Grains or are you going to check them out after reading this? I would love to hear when you did! Please let me know in a comment or share a beautiful picture of your bowl of hygge using #PlanetManel on Instagram. Thank you! X