Sweet potato curry

Sweet potato, chickpea and spinach curry – serves 2.  270 calories per serving

 

veg curry

Why not try this 5:2 fast diet curry,  the additions at the bottom of the page mean you can make it more substantial and also eat it on your non fast days

It works equally well with sweet potato, butternut squash or those Halloween pumpkins!

 

1 small sweet potato (100g) – chopped into bite sized pieces – you could also use pumpkin or butternut squash

1 small onion (50g) – chopped

1 medium chopped courgette or frozen peas (145g)

½ tsp vegetable oil

80g of spinach – fresh, frozen or tinned (and drained)

½ of a 400g tin of chickpeas – drained , reserve the liquid

½ garlic clove – chopped

Pinch chilli flakes

½ tsp curry powder

½ tin of chopped tomatoes

1 tsp tomato puree

1 tsp balti/curry paste

25 g per person of uncooked brown basmati rice (makes 80g of cooked rice)

Coriander leaves (optional)

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Frozen spinach

Frozen spinach

 

Fry the onion in the oil add the curry powder, tomato puree and curry paste and fry for 2 minutes.  Add the sweet potato (butternut squash or pumpkin) and cook for another 5 with a lid on.

veg

Add the courgettes (or peas), spinach, tomatoes, garlic, chilli, chickpeas.  If the sauce is too thick add some chickpea water.  Turn down the heat and simmer until the vegetables are soft (20-25 mins).  Taste and adjust seasoning, add more water if necessary

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At the same time cook brown rice (according to instructions on the packet) for about 20-25 minutes

veg curry

Sever the rice and curry.  Scatter over a few coriander leaves

Non-fast day additions

rotiMore rice 80g cooked – 90 calories

28g cashew nuts – 164 calories

small tandoori roti bread – 160 calories

5 weightloss tips

5 weightloss tips

5 weight loss tips

Be active

Walk as much as possible, not only will you burn calories, build muscle and strengthen bones but you’ll enjoy being in the great outdoors and benefit from all those happy hormones

women walking

 Learn to relax

When we are stressed we release hormones like cortisol and that can cause us to overeat; increased levels of the hormone can cause higher insulin levels, your blood sugar drops and you crave sugary, fatty foods.

Find ways to unwind, that could be listening to music, spending time in the garden, having a cup of tea, meditating, have a calming bath, walking the dog etc

Make the calories count

Reduce the amount of high fat and high sugar foods in your diet, and limit them to occasional treats. Replace biscuits, sweets, cakes, crisps, fast food, pastries etc with fresh fruit, dried fruit, small amounts of dark chocolate and nuts, grilled versions of your fried favourites or smaller portions

portion-sizes

Seek professional support

That could be a slimming group, buddying up with a pal and visiting a gym or coming to see someone like me who could help you make small but permanent changes or help you make healthy nutritious meals at my cookery classes.

vegan cookery class 17 Oct

80/20 rule

You don’t have to be 100% perfect 100% of the time. Try and incorporate in to your lifestyle 80% of actions and intentions that help you achieve your goal like the four tips above. That leaves 20% of your lifestyle that doesn’t necessarily help to achieve your goal but you enjoy, such as treats, fast food and less exercise.

Next vegan cookery class – 17th October

Next vegan cookery class – 17th October

In West Bridgford

vegan cookery class 17 Oct

 

I have a few spaces left on my next vegan cookery class this Tuesday (17th) at 5.30pm.  We will be making a delicious stuffed aubergine, using lentils and tomatoes with a herby oaty crust

This is the finished dish, as made by two other guests

stuffed aubergine

If you can’t make Tuesday 17th.  I always have classes running on the following days and times Monday, Wednesday or Friday from 11 – 12.15pm, Tuesday from 12.15 – 1.30pm and Tuesday evening from 5.30 – 6.45pm

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It only costs £25 and all the ingredients, equipment and recipe sheet are provided.  You just need a container to take it home.  You can come for just one class or attend a series, in which case you can have 6 for the price of 5 i.e. £125, and they can be used within a year

cookery review

 

Feel free to take a peak around my kitchen!

 

If you’d like to come along please contact me on 07946 301338 to book your place.

 

Roasted pumpkin soup

Roasted pumpkin soup.  Serves 1, 175 calories

The nights are getting colder and darker, so what better excuse do we meed to make a pan of warming, comforting soup

Pumpkins ( and other gourds like butternut squash) are also in season, so you can make this soup with an ingredient that is readily available, cheap and bursting with nutritional goodness such as fibre, potassium and immune fighting antioxidants.

pumpkin

photograph taken at The Fruit basket, West Bridgford

 

It’s also a great dish to support breast cancer awareness month and show that healthy nutritious food can support the body to maintain better health

 

pumpkin-seeds100g pumpkin (or butternut squash),  1 tsp veg oil, ½  tsp garam masala, ½ tsp curry powder, ¼ (40g) onion, ½ garlic clove, 300ml veg stock (using ½ tsp veg bouillon and 300ml hot water), 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds or flaked almonds

Peel the Pumpkin (or butternut squash) and cut into cubes.  Place in a roasting dish, add ½ tsp veg oil and the spices.  Roast at 1900C for 30 minutes

Chop the onion and fry in the remaining ½ tsp oil for 3 minutes, add the garlic and the roasted pumpkin and cook for 2 more minutes then add the hot stock.  Simmer for 15-20 minutes.  Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper if necessary

To toast the pumpkin seeds or almonds,  heat up a dry frying pan and add the seeds/nuts.  Keep the pan moving and watch to make sure the contents don’t burn.  After a few minutes the seeds or nuts should be likely toasted and give off a nutty smell

blend soup

If you like a smooth soup, blend and top with the roasted pumpkin seeds or nuts and serve with 1 Ryvita crisp bread

soup vegan

Local vegan producers

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

Local vegan producers

Last week I talked about being vegan and some of the things to look out for like B12, iron etc. I was also asked about veganism by Notts TV interviewer Kate Chaplin

 

 

This week I thought I’d showcase a few local Nottingham vegan producers who are making great vegan food not far from you! I have met them all personally and have eaten their produce on a number of occasions.  Maybe you can add to the list and we can let everyone know what’s out there for existing vegans and perhaps others who want to give it a go

Sweet Vibes Baker: Chamiah Goulbourne

This is her story…….

My journey to veganism began while working and living in Austria. I was working as an English teacher although it was unpaid in return for my teaching qualification. So no income and high living expenses. It made sense economically to cut food costs by cutting down on meat which I didn’t miss at all. Vegans in the family educated me around ethical and health implications of eating animal products.

the baker

On return from Austria I felt I couldn’t settle into the life I’d had before. I knew I wanted to do something more creative and centred around food but couldn’t quite figure out what. It was also around this time I developed severe allergies, face swelling, eczema. Inclined to look for a natural remedy I cut dairy and sugar from my diet, which eventually worked.

I started baking again, which had been a passion since my mid teens and since I could no longer eat commercially available sweet things I began adapting and developing recipes to contain no refined sugars and use foods which had naturally occurring sugars instead. I was amazed and excited with the ways in which I could use these new ingredients. And so Sweet Vibes Baker was born. I got the recipes taste tested by 50+ people at a time; tweaking and adapting from the feedback I received.

Cakes

I created an instagram page and facebook..although I had never used social media before. Designed my own logo and things went from there. I started getting custom orders and was contacted by a local vegetarian cafe, Folks and Fable in Bingham

Many of the products incorporate fruit and veg which I get from local stores, markets, allotments of friends, family and neighbours gardens. Cakes are sweetened further with syrups such as maple and agave.

sweet vibescakes

The idea behind the brand is a stripping and reverting back. Reverting back to nature, to locally home grown produce, to natural ingredients. I didn’t want to go down the cutesy cupcake route which is what I think people generally assume when you tell them you’re a baker. I wanted to stay away from that as I think it can sometimes be a little style over substance which would undermine the whole brand. It was also important the products tasted good, not good considering they were vegan or considering they were sugar free.

You can find me at markets and fairs around Nottingham and the East Midlands. Sneinton Vegan Market, Leicester Market, Sherwood Market, Notts Green Fest.

I also supply Folks and Fables with donuts and the newest vegan/vegetarian cafe in Nottingham: N0.12 Hounds gate. I want to expand so I’m currently in talks with other shops and cafes around Nottingham. As well as supplying cafe’s I take custom orders, birthday cakes and events.

In the future I would like to combine the conscious eating element of the business with conscious living through events, pop ups, workshops, classes, books. Eventually I will have my own space where people can eat, take part in yoga and meditation workshops and receive alternative therapies. So it would be great to work with people who have the same goals or experience in these areas. I’m very interested in working with children, through work I’ve had experience with almost every age range but think to make a real lasting change the key is to get in as early as possible. Plus younger groups are so rewarding to work with, seeing effects and change can be instant.

Overall I’m very excited with the opportunities coming my way and the directions in which the business can expand. Immensely proud of the progress this little business has made in just 13wks from start up and can’t wait to see what will happen next.

Luisa’s guilt free chocolates

This poster tells Luisa’s story

luisa final story

As you know I deliver healthy vegan cookery classes in my West Bridgford cookery school.  It is hoped that both Chamiah and Luisa will appear as guests chefs.  If you’d like to attend please contact me 07946 301338 or email susan@nutrition-coach.co.uk

For balance I’d like to showcase a savoury vegan producer

Vork Pie made by Sophie Neill

Sophie produces handmade vegan pies and snacks, and can be found at vegan fairs and local farmers markets. They regularly attend West Bridgford and Beeston Farmers Markets and the Vegan market in Sneinton. And their gorgeous pies and ‘scotch eggs’ are also sold at a number of local eateries including the Peacock and Johnson Arms Pubs and Debbie Bryan cafe

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But If you want one or several Vork Pies (they freeze very well) get to the venues early as they sell out very quickly!

I absolutely love Sarah’s pies, they make a very quick and tasty meal and have been a part of my diet for the last few years.  It was only a month ago that I tried the smoked hummus and beetroot ‘scotch egg’ It was so full if flavour.

Let’s keep supporting local producers

Banana and peanut butter Bread

Vegan Banana and peanut butter Bread –12 slices

This is a great way to use up ripe bananas that might otherwise end up in the bin or composter.  You can also defrost and use any ripe bananas that you have in the freezer.  An extra addition could be 1 tbsp cacao powder, but you will need to add 1 tbsp water to keep the same consistency

I baked this very cake for the visitors at Maggie’s cancer support centre, in Nottingham.  A very kind person sent me this message

“Just been to Maggie’s Susan and had some of your lovely banana cake. X”

 

vegan

225g Plain flour (or use Self-raising flour and no baking powder)

2 tsp of Baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tablespoon ground flaxseed + 3 tablespoons water – mixed together

100g Brown/coconut sugar or 75g agave/maple syrup/golden syrup/date syrup

2 tsp Cinnamon or Mixed spice

1 tbsp cacao powder and 1 tbsp water (optional)

4 large very ripe bananas, mashed

75g (80ml) Vegetable or Sunflower oil

120g wholenut peanut butter

2lb loaf tin and grease proof paper or liners

  • Pre-heat oven to 200C/180Fan/400F/ gas 6
  • Mash the peeled bananas with a fork. Mix well with oil, peanut butter, vanilla extract and sugar (and 1 tbsp water if adding cacao powder)
  • Mix the flour, baking powder and cinnamon/mixed spice (and cacao powder if using) together then add to the banana mix and combine well.

This short video shows the cakes consistency and how easy it is to prepare the loaf tin when using a paper liner

  • Pour in to a greased and lined 2lb loaf tin and place in the oven for 20 minutes, before checking. Cover with foil, if the loaf cake is browning. Bake for another 40 minutes (approximately).

vegan cake

  • Allow to cool a little before slicing. It’s delicious freshly baked but even yummier when it goes squidgy the next day!

vegan cakeDo let me know how you get on, and if you make any alterations or additions to the recipe

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Should you go Vegan?

Should you go Vegan?

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

The subject of veganism is appearing more regularly in the media; Lewis Hamilton is the latest big name to follow in the footsteps of Serena and Venus Williams and adopt a vegan lifestyle.  Vegetarian and vegan inspired cafes, pubs, restaurants are springing up all around the country – we have a plethora of them here in Nottingham – number 12 hounds gateRobe roomPeacockhorse and plough, binghamOscar and Rosiesangel microbrewery,cafe royaCrocus cafe to name but a few.  And of course I offer vegan cookery lessons in West Bridgford for those who wish to dip their toe in to vegan waters or for anyone that wants to incorporate more veggies in to their diet

vegan cookery class

Being vegan means not consuming any animal products or by-products.  Obviously that means no meat, fish, dairy and eggs.  For some it also means no honey.  They will also not wear leather or fur.  For many it is also more than just food, it’s a lifestyle choice centred around animal welfare, ethical treatment of animals and people and the conservation of the planet

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This article has also appeared in the local online resource West Bridgford Wire

http://westbridgfordwire.com/susan-hart-asks-go-vegan-2/

 

 

 

Here’s just some of the vegan food on offer in our Nottingham eateries

 

5 reason why veganism is worth considering

1. Vegans and vegetarians generally have a lower BMI (Body Mass Index),  which can lead to a reduced risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers.

IMG_66442. Eating a more plant based diet means more antioxidants and phytochemicals which help fight free radicals and reduce inflammation; high levels of both could lead to an increase in chronic diseases like arthritis, heart disease and some cancers

3. Getting your 5-a-day.  Nearly two thirds of adults don’t manage to eat their recommended 5 fruits and/or vegetables a day.  These multicoloured powerhouses give us fibre, vitamins and minerals and help to stabilise our blood sugar levels

 

4. Reduced food costs?  A tin of beans costing beans50p has up to 10g of protein.  Buying fruits and veg when in season makes them more affordable they also contain optimum nutrition.  Dried beans and lentils can be bought in bulk.  Frozen fruits and vegetables are nutritionally equal to fresh and are often more convenient. Many fruits and veg can be obtained free of charge from local allotments, friends and family or by growing your own.

5. And we can’t get away from animal welfare, global warming and sustaining the planet.

If you want to take the plunge but don’t know where to start then consider attending my vegan and vegetarian cookery classes that run weekly on most days (except Thursdays) and Tuesday evening

veg cookery poster jpeg

NP media cookery courseThe Nottingham Post online also covered the opening of my cookery school Nottingham Post article

So come along and make something new and nutritious

Contact me on 07946 301338 or susan@nutrition-coach.co.uk

 

 

A vegan diet can be naturally lower in calcium, vitamin D, iron, vitamin B12, zinc and omega-3 fatty acids.  But with some careful meal planning vegans can incorporate these micronutrients into their diet.

Marmite and soya (B12), Mushrooms and sunshine (Vitamin D), Flaxseeds (Omega 3), Green leafy Veg and pulses (Iron), citrus/dried fruits and sesame seeds (calcium) and Tofu, nuts and seeds (*zinc)

vegan cookery testimonial J Pemberton 2

Vitamin D was in the media this week; with Public Health England suggesting that everyone should take a supplement in the winter months due to the reduced sunlight.   One of the best ways to obtain this crucial vitamin is to be in the sun for about 10-15 minutes a day without sunscreen. so take a break at lunchtime and go for a quick walk, spend some time in the garden, walk the dog or take the children to the park.  All those activities done without sunscreen for 10 minutes should help your body to make Vitamin D.  After all it’s called the sunshine vitamin! 

* Unrefined grains such as wholemeal bread, pasta and rice, are high in phytates, which can block zinc absorption

 

Stuffed aubergine

Stuffed aubergine 

Serves 2

1 medium aubergine

1 tbsp olive oil

100g puy or green lentils

½ tin of chopped tomatoes

1 medium onion finely chopped

1 clove of garlic crushed or 1 tsp garlic paste/puree

1 tbsp toasted pine nuts*

1 pinch each of ground cinnamon, coriander and Chinese 5 spice (or clove)

handful mint or parsley leaves – chopped

Topping – 50g oats, 1 tbsp oil, 1 garlic clove minced, ¼ of the mint/parsley leaves chopped

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  • pre-heat the oven 200C/180 fan/gas 6
  • cut the aubergine in half lengthways and make diagonal cuts in to the flesh, making sure you don’t cut through the skin. Brush the surface with ½ tbsp of oil, place on a baking tray and bake for 30 minutes until soft.

aubergine

  • Meanwhile, cook the lentils in a large pan with 500ml of water. Bring to the boil and boil for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for a further 15 minutes until softened but still slightly firm. Drain and leave to cool

lentils

  • Heat ½ tbsp oil in a pan and slowly cook the onion until soft but not brown. Add the garlic and cook for a further 5 minutes. Tip in the ½ tin of tomatoes, drained lentils, toasted pine nuts and spices and cook for 3-5 more minutes
  • Make the oaty topping – In a bowl mix oats, oil, garlic and ¼ of the chopped mint/parsley leaves

  • Take the aubergine out of the oven and scoop out the flesh leaving the shell intact. Put the flesh into the pan with the other ingredients and stir in the remaining chopped mint/parsley

cooked lentils

  • Fill the shells with the mixture. And cover with the oaty topping. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Check to make sure the oats are not browning too quickly. Cover with foil if that is the case

 

 

  • Remove the cooked aubergine from the oven. Serve on two plates with a large mixed salad
  • The photo below is for 4 people

stuffed aubergine

My cookery guests have made this recipe, and absolutely loved it

 

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* to toast the pine nuts – heat up a try frying pan (no oil) add in the nuts and keep moving the contents so they gently toast and colour. Remove from the pan after 5 minutes and leave to cool

Alchemilla, Derby Road

Alchemilla, Derby Road

A veggie paradise!

You may not have heard of this new fine dining restaurant, or if you have you may not know where it is. Well let me enlighten you; according to its website Alchemilla delivers ‘contemporary British cuisine’, using plenty of plant-based ingredients. All cooked by Alex Bond and his team. Alex has worked in some illustrious kitchens including our very own Michelin stared Sat Bains

outside

Booking a table is quite tricky as the restaurant is already a big hit with Nottingham diners. But I managed to get a table for two one Friday lunchtime. Now all I had to do was find it!

It’s located on Derby Road not far from the entrance in to the Park. It has a very subtle door that has a ‘living wall’ next to it, we descended in to the subterranean restaurant, where we were taken to our table via a view of the kitchen; which looked very calm, orderly and clean. No Gordon Ramsey rants here!

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My review has also appeared in the West Bridgford Wire – a great local online resource

 

 

 

As usual I’d phoned ahead to say I was vegan and happily informed that it wouldn’t be a problem. We were each given a menu and the server said the chef would make the vegan adjustments I just had to choose the menu I wanted. So on offer was a 5, 7 or 10 course tasting menu with or without a drinks pairing menu. We opted for the 5 course with drinks (£35 and £25 respectively).

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Very quickly we were presented with homemade sourdough bread with butter and fermented olive ‘butter’ for me, along with tap water. The bread and olive spread was amazing and we were very tempted to ask for more.

 

After a suitable pause to take in our surroundings and check out the other diners our first course was served, heritage tomato with lovage puree for me. Not only was it beautiful to look at but the taste was so fresh and light, a very light wine was also served.

alchemilla tomato

Tomato dish

 

On to the next delicacy, cauliflower, roast yeast and almonds. And now this is my favourite! It was very comforting, soft and unctuous with a real ‘meaty’ favour, courtesy of the roasted yeast I think, all washed down with a rather lovely wine or was it a beer? More bread was brought to us and our water glasses were regularly refilled.

cauliflower

roasted cauliflower

 

Course three was BBQ Hispy, hazelnut milk and toasted hazelnuts. Now for those that don’t know (and I was one of them!) hispy is a type of cabbage. It was as far removed from school dinners as you could get and served another chilled wine.

Hispy cabbage

Hispy cabbage

At this point on a Friday afternoon I’m very grateful that the portions are delicate and the drinks are not full measures because out came number four of five and it was the first of the desserts; raspberry, coffee and black garlic – an unlikely combination but boy was it tasty! And it looked as pretty as a picture and again accompanied by a dessert wine.

raspberry dessert

raspberry dessert

And last but not least chocolate, miso, banana and lime; I have it all the time, don’t you! It was just delicious. The ice-cream mousse was so tasty without being sweet, that came from the caramelised banana. And the whole thing was as a delight.

 

chocolate and banana

chocolate and banana

If you’re not vegan you might be interested to know what my other half had:

Squid bolognaise; cauliflower, roast yeast with almonds and Parmesan; beef short rib, apple pie and finally strawberry, fennel and tarragon. He thoroughly enjoyed all his dishes but the squid bolognaise was the highlight

wine

Now you may have to forgive me If I got slightly muddled about the whys and wherefores of the wines and beer, but it was 2pm in the afternoon and I’m not a big drinker!

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The whole experience was fantastic. The staff were knowledgeable, attentive and courteous without being a nuisance. The restaurant itself is very open, architecturally stunning and not contrived or overly formal. And the pace of the meal was just right, it allowed us time to savour each course and gently sip the drinks. We finished with some very strong coffee and a promise to ourselves to return again.

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Top vegan restaurants in Notts

Top vegan restaurants in Notts

I know its only been three months since I last did a top 5 vegan restaurants list, but In Nottingham (and I’m sure it’s the same further afield) there’s been an explosion in vegetarian and vegan eateries as well as regular places providing vegan only menus

Here are 6 more places I have recently visited that have really proved themselves to be truly catering for vegans.  But if your favourite isn’t on the list then please let me know and I may pay them a visit

In no particularly order

Horse and Plough, Bingham

This rural pub is part of the ever expanding Castle Rock Brewery chain and they are all, to varying degrees vegan friendly.  However, the Horse and Plough is leading the way.  It has a dedicated vegan menu that is mouth wateringly tempting. But don’t just take my word for it take a trip out to Bingham and try their Starburger followed by the delicious chocolate brownie, all washed down with some very quaffable vegan beer

Alchemilla, Nottingham

Recently opened by Alex Bond, this unassuming restaurant serves contemporary British cuisine. There is no hiding from the fact that this is the most expensive restaurant on my list but boy does it deliver!  They serve 5,7 and 10 course tasting menus ranging from £35  to £60.  You can also have a wine pairing menu and they start from £25.  The vegan options, as with the other meat/fish dishes deliver a unique eating experience.  I bet you’ve never had cauliflower, roasted yeast and almonds, or a heritage tomato with lovage puree that looks as pretty as a picture and tastes even better.  As for puddings (yes you get two!); the raspberry, coffee and black garlic dessert will amaze you

Crocus cafe, Lenton

Situated in the heart of Lenton is the Crocus Cafe, a dedicated vegan and vegetarian restaurant with a social conscience.  It is Nottingham’s longest-running community café that is volunteer-led and  not-for-profit. And on top of that it serves food that people love.  The atmosphere is relaxed and inclusive and if you have enjoyed your meal you can enable someone less fortunate to experience it too as the cafe has a ‘suspended’ meal programme meaning you can pay in advance for someone’s else to eat for free

 

Baresca, Nottingham

You’ll find this vibrant restaurant tucked away on Byard Lane.  It is a modern Spanish tapas eatery and part of the Perkins family group.  I was really pleased to see it had a separate vegan menu that offered a full range of animal free delights.  I felt just like every other diner as I couldn’t make my mind up so I over ordered!! Don’t be surprised if like mine your eyes are bigger than your belly!!

Marigold restaurant, West Bridgford

Generally indian restaurants have always catered well for vegans, but the Marigold is exceptional.  For a start the price of the vegetable curries are much less than the meat or fish versions (often a personal bugbear of mine). The portions are generous without making you feel stuffed and the dishes themselves are not oily but more flavoursome relying on delicate spicing (although if you ask for they can also be deliciously hot).  And as if that wasn’t enough they offer a discounted loyalty card making your visit even better value

Angel Microbrewery, Stoney Street

The pub has been around for years and has undergone a recent transformation into a microbrewery.  So not only can you get a decent vegan pint (or half in my case) but it can be accompanied by a rather tasty pulled jackfruit burger.  Or you may be tempted by the pie, ‘fish’ and chips or ‘steak’.  Whichever one you choose save room for pudding!