I defy anyone to have anything other than positive things to say about this food…

We LOVE the Lotus. Chinese food is my all time favourite food…and an entire vegan chinese restaurant is quite simply heaven!

We popped in on Friday night….

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Who would have thought vegans would have such a choice? I mean…what do we eat?

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And, for me, the best meal I’ve had in many years….

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If you’ve never been to the Lotus, I suggest you take a wee daunder there. Whether you’re a vegan…vegetarian…or an omnivore keen to further your food horizons. You WILL NOT be left disappointed!

 

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Whole foods and nothing but the whole foods.

So, the Whole Food Market is something I’m very familiar with from my US friends. But, you don’t hear a lot of people in the UK talking about this store.

Thankfully…those of us lucky enough to live in the general vicinity of Giffnock have the pleasure of being able to visit this gem of a store.

Now, before you enter you should know that you’ll need to remortgage your house if you’re planning on doing a full shop here. Also, as good as some of it is…and my gosh so much of it is so good…a lot of it is overpriced pompous pish!

The things I love about it….

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The loose aisle….

I love being able to buy my pulses, oats, grains, nuts and fruit loose. I adore using the little brown paper bags and buying only what I need. I love the absence of plastic bags and tubs. Unnecessary plastic! Plus, overall….it IS cheaper!

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Nuts…nuts….nuts….

Peanut butter on mass!!!! Anyone who knows me knows I LOVE peanut butter….and at wholefoods you can make your own, and bulk buy really good natural peanut butter!

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Salted broad beans!!!

I also love that you can refill your washing liquids and fabric conditioner….so you can reuse your bottles. Again, reducing your environmental impact. It’s not any more expensive than the mass produced supermarket brands either!

The utter pish part, for me…is their fruit and vegetables. Yeah, they’re organic but they’re no more locally sourced than any other veg. And…they’re silly expensive. So, I bypass the pretty displays of vegetables and fruit and go straight to my favourite areas.

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Behold…..2 bags of vegan goodies for a whopping £56!

I’ll continue to visit this shop to get the things I love….but will favour the good ol’ supermarket for my weekly shop! Unless I win the lottery (which considering I don’t do it, the odds aren’t in my favour!) if I win the jackpot, I’ll throw caution to the wind and do my full bi-weekly (I’m rich, it’s my duty!) shop in wholefoods. I may even splurge and buy myself 2 or 3 canvas bags for life! 🤣

On another note….we have our first house valuation next week. Exciting!

It wouldn’t take a Philadelphia lawyer to work out what I made for dinner…

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My spicy peanut tofu was, as usual, amazing. But, the tofu I used tonight was BY FAR the nicest tofu I have ever made. It was actually chewy, rather than just soft. It has the same texture as paneer (from what I can remember), for those of you who can remember what non vegan food tastes like. I loved it and would highly recommend it.

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Go out and buy all the tofu!

Enjoy! 👌

Sleep is for the weak!

Today was supposed to be my ‘sleep day’ following a run of nights. Sadly for me I had to collect blinds from Glasgow, so I could only sleep for two hours!!! 😲

Plus side is….we went to Mono for our lunch. I really like Mono!! The atmosphere is lovely…the staff are super quirky and friendly…and the music is always good!!

The service is sloooooowwwww….as in you need to put aside a good three hours for a ‘quick snack’ but as long as you’re equipped with this knowledge you’ll be fine.

Today the theme was sharing. We had the platter…..💖

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The pickled veg is bliss!!!

And followed this up with the raw avocado and chocolate cheesecake to share and an oatly cappuccino (we had a coffee each…wwll, B stole mine!).

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My friend pointed out that the puree looks like a skid mark and now I can’t unsee it!! 😂😂😂

The huge bonus to Mono is location. Ideally situated for a wee walk to Glasgow Green…which is what we did. Baby B played for a while before we found ourself caught in a storm of biblical proportion.

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Trying to shelter!

Despite this severe soaking, we had fun! It’s always fun to be with the people I love the most.

Tonight I was craving vegan junk food, so vegan junk I had.

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Pasta with garlic, chilli & olive oil. My comfort food.

It’s now bedtime. Oh…and the blinds were worth getting up for.

G’night! 🤘

Glasgow Vegan Festival.

Today was the day for the long awaited Glasgow Vegan Festival. The event was on from 11am Saturday until 5pm Sunday (not 24 hours, you understand, it did close at 5pm each night). We’ve had this date in our dairy for quite a while .

It was held in the Trades Hall on Glassford Street and entry cost £3 on the door.

The building is absolutely gorgeous and it was wel laid out, considering. However, to say it was roasting was an understatement. I felt like I was perusing stalls on the surface of the sun! There wasn’t a breath of air in the place to begin with, then when you add hundreds of vegans into the mix…it all gets a bit unbearable! I was a wee bit crabbit, if I’m being 100% truthful.

Nice touches….

Once you paid in at the door there was a wee table selling Vegan Life and Cook Vegan magazines for £1.50, instead of the usual £4.99. This, I liked!!

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If I’m totally truthful, I wasn’t super impressed with the festival. I am ALWAYS happy when veganism is promoted and celebrated/enjoyed by the masses, but I just didn’t feel there was very much to see.

I was at the Edinburgh festival recently and the quality and quantity of stalls far outweighed the Glasgow selection.

There was one and a half rooms of stalls…perhaps 20 in total. The food was kept separate, which was definitely for the best as that room was like the bowels of hell in terms of heat.

They had the usual merchandise stalls, the lovely Alternative Grocery Store guy with all his wares, and some fox hunting/fracking subscription stalls.

To be honest, I couldn’t concentrate on browsing too much as I was roasting and it was BUSY!

Upstairs, and I mean UP STAIRS!!!!…there were talks and demos…and childrens yoga with Lindsay, which our little Bettelicious thoroughly enjoyed (for an hour).

I was keen to buy a theVEGANkind box, but they were totally sold out. 😭

Downstairs was the epicentre of the festival…the food area. Sadly, for us…most of the stalls were already sold out (we arrived at midday, so not late) and as a result EVERYONE seemed to be flocking towards one stall. This is where my experience became really enjoyable….food, of course.

After a VERY long wait, we got to the front of the queue. Sadly, they had sold out of rolls….at this point I really did want to throw myself on the floor and take a tantrum. But…there wasn’t enough floor space and I think it would have been judged quite harshly. So, instead…I ordered it with the bread instead!

I had an ‘egg’ and ‘bacon’ sandwich, with mayonnaise.

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This picture does not do it justice. Head to my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/TheProgressiveVegan/) for a video of the gooey ‘yolk’ running out it. 💗

This sandwich was amazing. I would have preferred the pretzel roll, but it was gorgeous on the bread too.

Liz got a ‘steak’ and cheese roll, again…without the roll.

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There was no facility for cold water/juice, so we took leave after the food was placed into our sweaty hands and headed outside to eat it on the pavement of Glassford Street, like a hobo! Happy hobos!

On a side note….do not ever buy this chocolate. It’s awful. It peels itself out the packet and jumps into your mouth….even when you don’t want it.

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Vega. The chocolate of the vegan Gods! 💗

I was hoping to pick up amazing vegan pies….vegan meat and chocolate…but sadly they had all sold out. So, overall not a very productive trip for me.

That being said. I enjoyed it. And I ate well….even if just for one meal! ✌

The Lotus.

I haven’t done a review in a while, mainly because I haven’t had time to galavant around the place trying out new food places.

However, as we were travelling through Glasgow around dinner time tonight (that’s 7ish to us) we decided to try the Lotus vegetarian (although in fairness it’s all vegan except 3 dishes) Chinese restaurant.

The Lotus Vegetarian Cuisine Limited, to give it its official name, can be found on Bridge Street in Glasgow. There is handy parking right outside, if you go after 6pm, and a wee pay and display a stone’s throw away if you visit during the day.

Inside the restaurant is pretty modest. It’s absolutely spotless and the staff are perhaps the friendliest I have ever encountered.

I usually take a picture of the menu, but to be honest I was too excited by the vast choice that I forgot entirely. Let’s just say there is at least four pages of vegan yumminess for you to peruse!

They also make it abundantly clear that NOTHING is too much bother. Everything is made fresh, to order and they’re happy to alter dishes or make up whatever you want.

For us, the most exciting part was the vegan ‘prawn crackers’. I haven’t been able to enjoy a prawn cracker for well over a decade…and tonight…I thought I was going to die and go to heaven! I know…I know…calm down, it’s only a prawn cracker. But…to me, it was a big deal!

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💗

With so much choice we took a while to decide what we were having, but we eventually opted for vegan prawn toast and deep fried dumplings for starters.

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You get 4 bits, but Liz stole a piece off the plate before I took the photo.

The prawn toast was gorgeous. Have no idea what it was filled with, but it was pink and fishy and the texture was right. It was a really gorgeous dish.

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Little pockets of salty, crispy gorgeousness.

Again, I dont know what these were filled with but I’d guess tofu and veggies. Regardless, they were perfect! The dipping sauce was also lush!

For the main I ordered Szechuan tofu and fried rice. This dish was absolutely amazing. It tasted so fresh and vibrant. It was medium spiced and the tofu itself was exquisite. Soft and creamy but packed full of flavour.

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Szechuan tofu.

Liz had….wait for it…sweet and sour ‘chicken balls’ with boiled rice.

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Delicious little crispy balls! (Don’t pervert the innocence of a food blog!)

These truly were amazing. I again, have no idea what the balls were actually made of. They didn’t taste of quorn or anything, so perhaps a soya protein they make themselves into balls? Regardless, the sauce was THE BEST I’ve tasted, and the texture of the chicken balls took me back to my omni days. For me, this dish was LOVE!

Bette had a love affair with the boiled rice, she ate loads and stated “this is the most good restaurant I’ve ever been to”. That’s straight from a four year old’s mouth. She thought her food was so good it made her want to cry! 😂  So really, everything I’ve said is totally unnecessary! 👍

Bette enjoyed a BIG bowl of vegan chocolate ice cream before we settled the bill.

If you’re going here you should know, they don’t serve alcohol…or meat, of course. The portion sizes are massive (but shamefully we ate nearly everything). Everything is cooked to order (and MSG free), so its not fast food. We sat down at 8.15pm and didn’t leave until 10pm. We waited a while between starter and main meal, a little bit longer than I’d have liked, but as soon as the food arrived I totally forgot about the wait. You become immersed in the flavours of the dishes and the waiting time seems like a distant memory. I’d do it all over again, rather similar to childbirth! 😉 Finally, the price is super reasonable…so you won’t need to remortgage your house for a meal here!

I’d give this little gem of a place a solid 10 out of 10!

A lovely experience from start to finish! We will definitely be back.

Thanks Lotus…for making vegan dining an absolute pleasure!! 💓