Vegan hotdogs in Santa Cruz, Tenerife

With four hours left before my flight home and having finished all the work I’d come to Tenerife to do, I decided to locate Santa Cruz’s vegan offerings. This is Northern Tenerife, well away from the crowded high rises and apartment blocks of Los Christianos. 

  
I’d been really surprised by Tenerife. For a start, I’d spent the last four days cowering from the freezing cold weather – in early June, fog and wind had been the order of the day. This is an island of microclimates, and my trip had taken me away from the sunshine. First up to El Teide, a mountain in the centre (fog), and then along the northern coastline which is reminiscent of California’s craggy Route One.

  
The purpose of the trip (oh the hardship), was to track down gourmet Tenerife – the culinary heart of the island. Over the last few days I’ve tasted some incredible wines and eaten a vegan menu at a two star Michelin restaurant. But now, with a few hours to myself, I left the comfort of the hotel’s saltwater pool and comfy loungers, to find Burger Mel, a totally vegan hamburger joint in Santa Cruz.

  
The fact that such a thing even existed surprised me for many reasons. The main one is that Spain is not known for its veggie friendly cuisine, and yet, according to Happy Cow, there seem to be about five Burger Mel’s. She offered me vegan mayonnaise but normal cheese (possibly – my Spanish is mediocre and she didn’t speak English), so it might be worth double checking before you go faux-dairy crazy.
I had absolutely no idea what I just ordered until she just brought it just now. I seem to have got a hotdog with vegan mayonnaise, salsa, onions, and topped with avocado. It’s awesome. Best of all is how cheap Tenerife is away from the tourist areas – it’s incredible.

  
I packed nine euros (now worth about 5 pounds) in my purse worried I wouldn’t have enough and the whole meal including a piña (pineapple juice) came to 4 euros. Amazing. It’s good too. It lacks a little texture but  made a nice change from Tenerife’s high end restaurants. And perhaps the meat-free wind is starting to blow here. 

Vegan hotdogs in Santa Cruz, Tenerife

With four hours left before my flight home and having finished all the work I’d come to Tenerife to do, I decided to locate Santa Cruz’s vegan offerings. This is Northern Tenerife, well away from the crowded high rises and apartment blocks of Los Christianos. 

  
I’d been really surprised by Tenerife. For a start, I’d spent the last four days cowering from the freezing cold weather – in early June, fog and wind had been the order of the day. This is an island of microclimates, and my trip had taken me away from the sunshine. First up to El Teide, a mountain in the centre (fog), and then along the northern coastline which is reminiscent of California’s craggy Route One.

  
The purpose of the trip (oh the hardship), was to track down gourmet Tenerife – the culinary heart of the island. Over the last few days I’ve tasted some incredible wines and eaten a vegan menu at a two star Michelin restaurant. But now, with a few hours to myself, I left the comfort of the hotel’s saltwater pool and comfy loungers, to find Burger Mel, a totally vegan hamburger joint in Santa Cruz.

  
The fact that such a thing even existed surprised me for many reasons. The main one is that Spain is not known for its veggie friendly cuisine, and yet, according to Happy Cow, there seem to be about five Burger Mel’s. She offered me vegan mayonnaise but normal cheese (possibly – my Spanish is mediocre and she didn’t speak English), so it might be worth double checking before you go faux-dairy crazy.
I had absolutely no idea what I just ordered until she just brought it just now. I seem to have got a hotdog with vegan mayonnaise, salsa, onions, and topped with avocado. It’s awesome. Best of all is how cheap Tenerife is away from the tourist areas – it’s incredible.

  
I packed nine euros (now worth about 5 pounds) in my purse worried I wouldn’t have enough and the whole meal including a piña (pineapple juice) came to 4 euros. Amazing. It’s good too. It lacks a little texture but  made a nice change from Tenerife’s high end restaurants. And perhaps the meat-free wind is starting to blow here. 

With four hours left before my flight home and having finished all the work I’d come to Tenerife to do, I decided to locate Santa Cruz’s vegan offerings. This is Northern Tenerife, well away from the crowded high rises and apartment blocks of Los Christianos. 

  
I’d been really surprised by Tenerife. For a start, I’d spent the last four days cowering from the freezing cold weather – in early June, fog and wind had been the order of the day. This is an island of microclimates, and my trip had taken me away from the sunshine. First up to El Teide, a mountain in the centre (fog), and then along the northern coastline which is reminiscent of California’s craggy Route One.

  
The purpose of the trip (oh the hardship), was to track down gourmet Tenerife – the culinary heart of the island. Over the last few days I’ve tasted some incredible wines and eaten a vegan menu at a two star Michelin restaurant. But now, with a few hours to myself, I left the comfort of the hotel’s saltwater pool and comfy loungers, to find Burger Mel, a totally vegan hamburger joint in Santa Cruz.

  
The fact that such a thing even existed surprised me for many reasons. The main one is that Spain is not known for its veggie friendly cuisine, and yet, according to Happy Cow, there seem to be about five Burger Mel’s. She offered me vegan mayonnaise but normal cheese (possibly – my Spanish is mediocre and she didn’t speak English), so it might be worth double checking before you go faux-dairy crazy.
I had absolutely no idea what I just ordered until she just brought it just now. I seem to have got a hotdog with vegan mayonnaise, salsa, onions, and topped with avocado. It’s awesome. Best of all is how cheap Tenerife is away from the tourist areas – it’s incredible.

  
I packed nine euros (now worth about 5 pounds) in my purse worried I wouldn’t have enough and the whole meal including a piña (pineapple juice) came to 4 euros. Amazing. 
It’s good too. It lacks a little texture but  made a nice change from Tenerife’s high end restaurants. And perhaps the wind is changing here. 

Le Rif-A vegan look at life in the north London souk

Le Rif.

172 Seven sisters road, Finsbury Park, N7 7PX is not the sort of location where you’d expect to be whisked back to the sights and smells of the Morccoan souk simply by spooning a mouthful of Tagine, but whisked I was.

The decor is unassuming. There is a wooden terrace outside which provides seating facing onto Seven Sisters Road. I’m not sure whose terrible idea this was as any flavour is immediately masked by the taste of petrol coming from the late rush hour traffic jam that stews there. We moved inside under the pretence of rain, just in case…

The inside is fantastically basic. Without wanting to sound gooey, the owners cheerful smile and the good nature of all the staff working there immediately made up for the 1970’s factory-line cafe decor. Though I appreciated the single memento to Morocco-one of those stained glass tin lamps that you get hassled for in the souk every time you set foot there-there wasn’t much else to tell you it was a Moroccan restaurant, but that was probably to its credit. There are only so many cushions and drapes that one needs. However, I think you can tell strong personalities from weak ones by the types of souvenirs people buy. Lamps from the souk suggest an eagerness to please, and a slight terror of walking away mid haggle. I also have a lamp in my bedroom. I empathise with the owner.

Yet, eagerness to please is a reasonable trait for a Moroccan cafe owner, and, as long as he wasn’t going to try to hoist his lamp on me, I could deal with the sparseness. Especially as tasty, tasty things were on offer, especially for vegans and vegetarians. Vegetarian tagine was for sale at under a fiver (4) and wraps stuffed with falafal, hummous and vegetables were only three.

I was most excited by the juice selection. Morocco will forever be in my mind as a selection of juice carts. In Marrakech’s main square sit around 20 orange juice carts at least, all screaming at tourists to invite them to drink their wares. And it’s the tastiest, sweetest and most refreshing juice you could drink on a burning hot day under the winter sun. At only 20p, I was unsurprised by the mark up to 2.20 here, for a drink of far worse quality. But hey, a mans gotta live!
The tagine was stacked high and with an amazing depth of flavour. It was dairy free (it is normally) and scattered with torn mint leaves. I could taste the turmeric and the cumin and the sweetness of fruit and the depth of the root vegetables.
The falafel wraps were good. There wasn’t as much depth of flavour to the falafel as there was to the tagine, but it would make a tasty, quick snack. The best thing about the wrap was the way the flatbread itself had been griddled so that it gave of a smokey, charred taste. If you’re vegan, there is coleslaw in it, but they obviously make each one made to order so just ask him to leave out the coleslaw. Otherwise, it’s perfect!
Other options include stuffed aubergine for 4.50 and a choice of moroccan pastries, which, for people who have been to Morocco will remember are sweet, sticky and totally yummy.

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