Posts Tagged ‘vegan’

Moroccan Soup Bar Two Go, Fitzroy North

I love the Moroccan soup bar. I love its ethos, the fact that it gives refugee woman a place to work and find their feet, and I love the vegetarian food.

Everytime I visit Melbourne, I find an excuse to wander past on the no. 11 tram and have my fix of the chickpea bake. I have tried to make this dish, but even with the release of the recipe as part of the cook book, I could not get the taste right.

So when I found out that Hana Assafiri had opened a second soup bar, it was open for lunch and now PIZZA was available: how could a good foodie say no?

At lunchtime, there are two options, an open plate and soup with bread.

Open plate ($12.50):
Lunch plate - angle 1

Lunch plate crispy potatoes

Moroccan cabbage salad, cous cous salad, pearl barley salad, a little chickpea bake, hummous, a piece of deep fried haloumi, a mixed vegetable fritter, crispy slices of potato. I was dining in a party of four, and everyone else had googly eyes for my plate.

Spinach and Lentil Soup ($7.50):

Spinach and Lentil Soup

There are two kinds of soup available when we visit: harira and a spinach and lentil soup, both with a tomato base. The harira soup is like an Italian minestrone with chickpeas instead of pasta. It’s lifted with the addition of pureed preserved limes. The spinach and lentil is tangy, perhaps with a little vinegar.

Marrakizza pizza ($15):


Moroccan pizza. This has a thin crust but an extra yummy chewiness. It’s not just pizza toppings on a flat bread. Tomato base with feta, dried black olives, diced tomato. The whole lot is topped with crispy sweet potato shards, fresh rocket, a swirl of spicy chermoula and preserved lemon puree. Gluten free is available for $1 more.

Dinner box ($12.50):
Dinner Box

You can order an open dinner plate to eat in ($15), takeaway with or without your own container. The takeaway dinner bowl included chickpea bake, saffron rice, tomato & lentils, baked vegetables, some green salad and a few pickles.

Nus nus:
Nus Nus

This is Moroccan style coffee, served with a mini piece of Turkish delight. There is a layer of milk, a shot of espresso, and a layer of foam on top. Like a little weather system, the whole thing kind of swirls around with the temperature differential. It is good to sit and sip, and I want another one.

I love the Moroccan soup bar, but I love the two go version a lot more. It’s open at lunchtime (so i don’t have to wait until after 6pm for my fix), and the lunchtime open plate is a bargain. You can still get the banquet here. Service at night can be a little haphazard as they rely on a raffle ticket numbering system for both dine in and takeaway. You save $2 if you bring your own takeaway container. And yes, you can still ask for a whole serving of chickpea bake in your takeaway box.

Moroccan Soup Bar Two Go
street: 316 St Georges Rd, Fitzroy North, VIC 3068
Phone: +61-03-9486-3500

11:00AM – 3:00PM , 6:00PM – 10:00PM
1100-1500 hours, 1800 – 2200 hours.
Closed Monday lunch


Food Scrap Kim Chi

I told you last year that I had obtained via swaps a delicious vegan kimchi. I had badgered poor Megan, so many times for the recipe, and I was running out of kim chi, so I decided to try and make my own:

Kim Chi (vegan)

Yeah, so I didn’t keep track of the recipe, or the quantities I used but I’m pretty sure it came from Serious Eats.

My sister did a taste test of the two kinds of kim chi:

KimChi comparison

The plate on top is the version she had made (Sarah Wilson’s “Everything but the kitchen sink kimchi” from Simplicious, recipe finally obtained from Megan); the plate on the bottom is my version. She decided that she preferred my version because it had a little more complexity, chilli, smokiness and fish-like taste. Going back, and tasting all three (yes, I had a teeny tiny bit left over from last year): the simplicious version seemed to have just a salt background, and mine was much more interesting.

So I had to make it again.

I had a giant home grown overgrown kohlrabi that I had harvested at the end of spring, and it had been sitting around in my fridge crisper for nearly six months. It was a bit too tough to eat on its own, or too hard to prepare. I had one lonely home grown daikon radish, and a parsnip. I wanted to get rid of my onion weed, so the flower heads went in (and I then syringed glysophosphate down the stem. The only way I know of to remove this weed).

The items in italics were home grown.

Food Scrap Kim Chi
Kohlrabi – tough outer layer peeled off; then grated
Daikon, daikon leaves
Perilla leaves
Onion weed flower heads
Scallions/Spring onions (green part)
purple chillis – two small, deseeded
beetroot leaves

garlic – 4 small cloves
old ginger – 2 cm
onion – 1/4 medium sized onion
miso – 1 tsp white, 1 tsp genmai
sweet smoked paprika
wakame – 1 tsp, reconstituted
dulse flakes
1/8 cup water

Food scrap kimchi

The recipe I followed is that from Serious Eats, and I hope that in a month’s time, it is as good as my first batch!

Revolution Foods Cafe, Enmore (Closed)

I am not vegan, I enjoy my cheese, meat and honey too much to be able to give them up.

I do however try and buy free range, organic, sustainable and biodynamic when possible.

One Saturday my friend H and I happened to be in Newtown. First we visited the markets at the intersection of Australia St and King St, and then stocked up at Alfalfa House. Hungry! What to do? Let’s try Revolution Foods.

The menu looked interesting with burgers, salads, smoothies and pots of tea.

First up, Amrita chai teapot for two ($5):

Amrita Chai

We had a choice of soy, rice, almond or hazelnut milk. We chose the latter which added a nice nuttiness. The chai itself…. Nicely spiced and a good dense foam…. but not enough tea leaves to call it a tea! It didn’t need any extra sweetener.

Secondly, Disco fries ($8.50):

Disco fries

The fries themselves were very crunchy, almost as if they had been deep fried twice. The ‘miso mushroom gravy’ started out moist and moreish, then it seemed like that niceness just evaporated and the mixture got very dry. I needed addition of tangy tomato sauce to counteract it. We chose this dish initially because it sounded like that Canadian dish ‘poutine’.

Main course, Taco Salad ($11.95):

Taco Salad at Revolution Foods

I was anticipating lots of taco chips scattered throughout a black bean salad. We received one giant corn tortilla which had been folded into a bowl shape and deep fried. This had been served with avocado, tomato salsa and a cashew based ‘sour cream’. The salsa, sour cream and avocado was nice. The black bean chili would’ve been nice if CUMIN hadn’t been the only thing I could taste. Cumin!?! Please don’t add cumin to a Mexican sounding dish.

The staff were really friendly and accommodating. We had a rug rat with us who wouldn’t stay still, and our waitress brought over a little dish of vanilla ‘ice cream’ with strawberries and chocolate sauce to keep her distracted.

You forget how many things that you take for granted are animal derived and thus off the radar for a vegan. Like honey and dairy. Places like this remind me of that.

As a vegan, I think that this would be quite a nice and inventive place to eat at. As a non-vegan, I’m afraid that I was left feeling slightly hungry and a little disappointed.

Revolution Foods Cafe (vegan)
175 Enmore Road Enmore 2042
M: 1100-1500
F: 1100-2100
Sat: 1000-2100
Sun: 1000-1900