Sunday, September 30, 2018

Yuba-mushroom cheesesteak sandwiches

September 22, 2018


When we're in the mood for an all-day food project, we often turn to Serious Eats. Most recently, we had a crack at their veganised Philly cheesesteak. We've never tried the real thing - a soft long roll filled with many layers of thinly sliced steak and some mild and melty cheese - but we've had a few mock meat versions around Melbourne before.

What most appealed to me about this recipe is the use of layered bean curd sheets in place of the meat. We don't have a lot of experience cooking with it and I was keen to try it again. KFL Supermarket stocked numerous brands and forms, and we picked two to play around with. The first were just thin dried rectangles, and the second were thicker fried rings - I thought these latter ones might be a bit chewier and better at absorbing flavour.


Each component is a full recipe in itself. First, there's a mushroomy stock where the veges are roasted for maximum flavour. You can optionally smoke the yuba, but we just added a few teaspoons of liquid smoke instead as we later cooked it in the stock. A vegan cheese sauce gets its creaminess from blended simmered potato as well as cashews; it's spiced up with paprika, chipotles and jalapenos. Then there's onions slowly caramelised on the stovetop and more roasted mushrooms for the filling. It really is an all-afternoon affair!

The one core hiccup for us was cooking the bean curd sheets. They're thin and brittle, difficult to slice into strips and and not amenable to being coated in dark caramel as the recipe suggests. Even once the stock went in, I picked and prodded at the bean curds, adding a bit more water and trying to make sure each one had enough time submerged in liquid to soften properly. I wonder if the ones used by the Serious Eats team had a different form.

The finished rolls were sloppy and savoury and very enjoyable! And leftovers that we were glad to eat for days. But we didn't really pick up on the many nuanced ingredients that went in along the way - the stock was quite mild, the peppers barely perceptible, the mushrooms losing out to the volume of bean curd in the filling. Our minds are ticking over on a different version - less yuba (pre-soaked) and more mushrooms, sauteed in vegan Worcestershire and oyster sauces, and perhaps one of our other creamier vegan sauces. At this stage we're boldly hoping that we can quarter the effort and possibly even dial up the flavour along the way.



Yuba-mushroom cheesesteak sandwiches
(slightly adapted from a recipe on Serious Eats)

mushroom stock
560g button mushrooms, brushed and quartered
1 onion, quartered
8 cloves garlic, roughly smashed
1 large carrot, cut into large chunks
4 ribs celery, cut into large chunks
5 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon beef-style stock powder

cheese sauce
6 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 chipotle pepper plus 1 teaspoon adobo sauce, all chopped finely
1 small potato, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cup roasted cashews
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup almond milk
1 teaspoon hot sauce
2 teaspoons pickling liquid from a jar of jalapeños
salt

sandwich filling
2 onions, thinly sliced
6 tablespoons sunflower oil
200g king oyster mushrooms, shredded lengthwise
salt and pepper
1/4 cup caster sugar
400g bean curd sheets (yuba), sliced into thick strips
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

6 long rolls


Start with the mushroom stock! Preheat an oven to 230°C. In a large bowl, mix together the mushrooms, onion, garlic, carrot and celery. Add 4 tablespoons of the oil and the salt and toss everything together. Spread the veges out over two baking trays and roast them, tossing them around every 15 minutes, until they're dark brown, about 45 minutes total.

Set a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the remaining tablespoon of oil and the tomato paste, cooking for up to 5 minutes, until dark brown. Add 1.5 litres of water, the roasted vegetables and the stock powder. Simmer everything together for 45 minutes. Strain out the solids and keep the stock for the following steps.

Next, the cheese sauce. Pour the oil into a medium-large saucepan and set it over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and jalapeño, and cook them, stirring regularly, until soft but not browned. Add the cumin, paprika, garlic powder and chipotle with sauce and cook for a further a minute. Add the potatoes and cashews, and cook for 2 minutes. Add the water and almond milk and bring it all to the boil. Turn down the heat and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat and add the hot sauce, pickle juice and salt. Use a blender or spice grinder to make the smoothest sauce you can (it's a tough ask with all those potato chunks!).

Time to prepare the sandwich filling. In a small frypan, heat 3 tablespoons of oil over low-medium heat. Add the onions and cook slowly, stirring regularly, until thoroughly caramelised, about 30 minutes. Set aside.

Get that oven back up to 230°C. In a bowl, toss the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil through the king oyster mushrooms and season it all with salt and pepper. Spread them over a baking tray and roast until golden brown, up to 20 minutes.

Go back to your largest saucepan and set it over high heat. Add the sugar, and cook it until melted and browning. Add the yuba strips and, if you can, stir them around to get them coated in the caramel. Add the liquid smoke, paprika, garlic powder, and then pour over the mushroom stock. Simmer, stirring regularly, until most of the liquid has been absorbed by the yuba, about 15-20 minutes. (We added some extra water and put the lid of for a bit to get the yuba steaming, before taking it off to let liquid evaporate.) Turn off the heat and stir in the mustard. Fold through the sauteed onions and roasted king oyster mushrooms.

To assemble, slice each long roll lengthways. Spread 1/4 cup of cheese sauce on the bottom half of each roll, pile up the yuba-mushroom filling and pop the top back on.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

True North III

September 22, 2018


We've been consistently enjoying lunches and brunches (and even one trivia night) at True North for a few years now. We stopped in for lunch last weekend on our way to the KFL supermarket, and loved the look of TN's current menu! There's an entire separate page of vegan stuff, with gluten free options marked throughout. It follows the same themes as we've seen before, loosely inspired by Mexican ingredients (jalapenos, black beans, pico de gallo) and diner staples (bagels, mac'n'cheese, potato hash) with mock meats and dairy scattered throughout.

I surprisingly looked beyond the Vulgar Display of Pancake to the Facon the Law ($16), a toasted corn brioche roll stuffed with jalapeno scrambled tofu, facon, tomato, vegan cheddar, avocado, relish and rocket. It dripped juices everywhere, and the perfectly ripe avocado got a bit lost in the mix, but this was a mighty, squishy savoury joy.


Michael was just as delighted by the Blazin' Hash ($21), a huge plate containing half a roasted tomato, more of that jalapeno scrambled tofu, wilted spinach, chiptole BBQ mock duck, and a golden-fried brick of the most exquisite potato hash. 


I also wanna tip my hat to the drinks menu, which includes some lovely non-alcoholic options that aren't kombucha. It seems these folks make their own soda syrups, including a charming apple & rhubarb fizz ($5).

True North has achieved an impressive balance of still doing what it does best while also keeping the menu fresh. It means we're still bursting to blog it, even when our photos are overexposed and the cafe is four-to-five years past its instagrammable launch date.


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You can read about our previous visits to True North here and here. Since then it's received positive write-ups from little vegan bearVeganopoulous and frenchtoastandindiepop.
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True North
2A Munro St, Coburg
9917 2262
vegan food, booze
https://www.truenortharcher.com/

Accessibility: There's a small step on entry and a pretty crowded interior (especially on the weekends when the stools at the bar are in use). We ordered at the table and pay at a high counter. The toilet is a narrow non-gendered cubicle.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Lanzhou Beef Noodle Bar

September 16, 2018


Located on the edge of the University of Melbourne campus, I've passed Lanzhou Beef Noodle Bar and not paid any attention to it on countless walks and tram rides. But it unexpectedly turned up in our recent googlings of youpo mian, so we stopped in for an early low-fuss dinner after watching a movie at Nova. It was surprisingly tough to claim two seats at 5:30pm!

As the eatery's name suggests, this isn't really a spot for vegos. The one-page menu starts with three beef noodle soups, two beef noodles, and a cold noodle plate featuring - would you believe it? - beef. Then there's the youpo noodle ($11.80), helpfully labelled as vegan in green lettering! There appear to be a couple other veg options too, though they're not labelled: the 'capsiegg' noodle with soybean paste and a selection of sides.


I was determined not to order the lesser veg dish for a third time, so we doubled down on youpo. This one has the kudai/belt noodles we missed at Xi'an Famous! And there was no shortage of garlic and oil. I liked the chilli level, and there was more to hand at our table for Michael to dig into. In short, this had everything we've fondly recalled from the couple of youpo mian bowls we enjoyed in China! And all the more wonderful that we can revise the best noodle-pulling technique from the chefs while we wait.


We didn't dare imagine that we'd be accessing these noodles again so easily in Melbourne, but Lanzhou Beef Noodle Bar also has outlets in the city and in Caulfield as well as Carlton. They really couldn't be more convenient.
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The only other blog review I've found is about the Caulfield outlet, on far fetched & fanciful.
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Lanzhou Beef Noodle Bar
Shop 3, 743-751 Swanston St, Carlton (entry on Grattan St)
0452 596 756
menu
https://www.beefnoodle.com.au/

Accessibility: There's a shallow ramp on entry. Furniture is densely packed high tables with backless stools. We ordered and paid at a high counter. We didn't visit the toilets.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Simple

September 10 & 15, 2018


Regular readers will be well aware that we've well and truly bought into the Ottolenghi hype. There are nearly 70 posts on here based on Yotam recipes, so we were always going to pounce on his new book when it turned up in the shops. Simple promises the best of both worlds - all the deliciousness of Ottolenghi's recipes without the overly involved processes and ingredients that make them unsuitable for a school night. We couldn't wait to try it out.

The first recipe that caught our eye was tofu and French beans with chraimeh sauce. I couldn't help but laugh when one of the first steps in the recipe was toasting and hand-grinding some caraway seeds - only in an Ottolenghi recipe would this qualify as simple. To be fair, it actually was pretty easy and probably only takes half an hour to put together. I loved this simple mix of spicy tofu and crispy beans, but any subtlety in the sauce was a bit drowned out by our hot paprika - we'll soften the edges a bit next time we make it.


We followed up with one of the many recipes in Simple that seem a bit more like a side than a standalone meal - Brussels sprouts with black garlic. Again, black garlic is a pricey, niche ingredient and wouldn't turn up in too many books pitched as easy cooking, but this is Ottolenghi after all. We loved this - black garlic has a rich, complex flavour that works brilliantly with the slightly caramelised sprouts. We served it up with fresh bread and hummus, but it would work alongside almost anything.


So far, so good with Simple - both of these dishes would be easily whipped up on a work night and both really hit the mark. Don't go in expecting these recipes to actually be simple, but they're definitely a step down from a lot of Yotam's recipes - we'll report back as we try more.


Tofu and French beans with chraimeh sauce
(from Yotam Ottolenghi's Simple)

500g beans, trimmed
1 tablespoon sunflower oil
500g firm tofu, cut into 2cm cubes
15g coriander
salt

sauce
6 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons hot paprika
1 tablespoon caraway seeds, lightly toasted and crushed in a mortar and pestle
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoons sunflower oil
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons caster sugar
1 tablespoon lime juice

Get a medium saucepan of water boiling and add the beans, cooking for five minutes until cooked but still crunchy. Drain and refresh with cold water.

Put the sunflower oil into a frying pan and fry the tofu with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Give it a good 5-10 minutes - you want to get it nice and golden on all sides. Remove from the pan and set aside.

Make the sauce by mixing together the garlic, spices and oil in a small bowl. Add this mixture to a hot frying pan and fry for about a minute. Add the tomato paste, sugar, lime juice and a teaspoon of salt. Stir to combine and then add a cup of water to thin the sauce out. Bring to the boil and cook for a couple of minutes until the sauce thickens.

Add the beans and cook for another minute and then kill the heat. Stir through the tofu and coriander and serve with rice.


Brussels sprouts with burnt butter and black garlic
(from Yotam Ottolenghi's Simple)

450g Brussels sprouts, cut in half lengthways
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
20g black garlic
2 tablespoons thyme leaves
30g unsalted butter
30g pumpkin seeds, toasted
juice of a lemon
1 tablespoon tahini
salt

Preheat the oven to 220°C.

Spread the sprouts out on a baking tray and sprinkle over a good shake of salt. Drizzle with olive oil and smush around a bit so the sprouts get nice and oily. Bake for 10 minutes, until golden brown.

Crush the caraway seeds in a mortar and pestle. Add the black garlic and thyme and crush some more to make a rough paste.

Heat the butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Cook for 3-5 minutes until melted and dark brown. Add the garlic paste, sprouts, pumpkin seeds and more salt. Stir for a minute and kill the heat. Stir through the lemon juice and drizzle the tahini over it all. Serve.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Artichoke & chickpea salad

September 9, 2018


This is a salad that we've been enjoying for several years, thanks to Smith & Daughters. It's been on a couple of versions of their dinner and brunch menu, and it's also in their cookbook. It's hearty and hardy and pickley and just a bit toasted, something that works both as a side and as a main dish on its own. 

The original version pairs artichoke hearts with Jerusalem artichokes; I've gotten lazy about the root vegetable and just use regular old potatoes instead. My two other convenient pantry swaps are dried thyme instead of fresh, and maple syrup instead of agave.

This is the second or third time I've prepared it to share at a friend's house. It's usually tough enough to travel in its final serving state, but this one had a two and a half hour train journey between prep and presentation so I got finicky and packed many of the components separately. Rocket: in its own bag. Almonds: lightly roasted then jarred. Roasted potatoes and paprika chickpeas sharing one lunchbox, charred artichoke hearts and capers in another. Lemon-cumin dressing: jarred and ready for a last emulsifying shake before pouring. It was worth the effort to preserve all those textures, and the entire salad was happily demolished in a sitting, making the train trip home all the easier.


Artichoke & chickpea salad
(slightly adapted from Shannon Martinez & Mo Wyse's Smith & Daughters Cookbook)

1 can chickpeas
olive oil
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
small handful of slivered almonds
500g potatoes
2 teaspoons dried thyme
400g can artichoke hearts
45g capers
2 large handfuls rocket
salt and pepper

dressing
juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon maple syrup
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/3 cup olive oil
salt and pepper


Preheat an oven to 180°C.

Drain and rinse the chickpeas, then spread them out in a small-medium baking tray. Drizzle over the some olive oil, sprinkle in the paprika and add a little salt. Stir well and bake for 20-30 minutes (mine never really crisp up as promised).

This is a good opportunity to toast the almonds in a separate small baking dish. There's no need for oil! Just keep an eye on them to avoid burning - they'll only take about 5 minutes.

Scrub the potatoes and slice them into cubes, skin on. Place them in a large baking tray, drizzle them with olive oil, then add the thyme, plus some salt and pepper. Toss everything together, then bake the potatoes until tender, 30-40 minutes.

After the almonds are out of the oven and cooling, There's probably enough time to make the dressing. Place all of the ingredients in a lidded glass jar and give them a thorough shake.

Drain and lightly rinse the artichoke hearts, then slice them into quarters. Lightly dress them with olive oil, salt and pepper. Set a frypan on high heat and sear the artichokes on 1-2 sides. Remove the artichoke hearts. Drain the capers and pop them into the pan for just a minute, until they pop.

When it's time to serve, layer up the rocket, potatoes and chickpeas, artichokes and capers, then the almonds. Pour over the dressing and lightly toss everything together if you have the space.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Coke & peanuts sheet cake

August 30, 2018


Last month Slate pushed an article into my RSS reader pronouncing Coke and Peanut Butter Sheet Cake Is Sweet, Salty and Southern. A sweet and salty dessert with an offbeat ingredient list? I was very predictably Into It. I found the right excuse to make it soon enough: we set off on a long weekend in Forrest with a couple of friends and I resolved to take most of the cake along with us, leaving a quarter of it back home with our cat sitter.

This recipe is egg-free and pretty easy to veganise, so I went ahead and substituted Nuttelex for the original butter. This only goes a small way towards explaining the worrisome things I noticed as I proceeded. The cake batter was thick and a bit rubbery, and it barely stretched across the baking tray I'd chosen for it, even though this was smaller than the baking tray directed in the recipe. It never achieved the fluffiness of a fresh cake, and seemed to have two-day-old texture from the get-go. 

The peanut butter buttercream was incredibly rich, even by my tolerant standards, and licking the beaters was enough to have me feeling bloated. The quantity here seemed far too high: as you can see in my photo, the buttercream looms as tall as the cake itself! (I wonder if this recipe was tested well, because the photo accompanying the recipe shows very different proportions.)

Yet, somehow, these two not-quite-right components came together to make a pretty great cake. The Coca Cola didn't offer a distinct flavour, but the thick buttercream countered the dryness of the cake and it was very satisfying to eat with a spoon. While this wasn't the novelty experience I hoped for, it was a comforting treat as we lounged by the fire with a jigsaw.


Coke & peanuts sheet cake
(a veganised version of a recipe at food52)

cake
500mL Coca-Cola
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3/4 cup cocoa powder
125g margarine, cut into tablespoon-sized pats
3 cups plain flour
2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt

topping
1 1/2 cups smooth peanut butter
225g margarine, softened
3 cups icing sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-2 tablespoons soy milk
3/4 cup peanuts (roasted and salted), chopped


Preheat an oven to 180°C. Line a very large baking tray with paper and spray it with oil.

In a large saucepan, place together the cola, sugar, cocoa and margarine. Set it over medium heat and bring it to a high simmer, stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat when the margarine has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Set the saucepan aside to cool slightly.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, bicarb soda and salt. Pour in the still-warm cola and whisk until smooth. Pour the cake batter into the baking tray and bake until it passes the skewer test, 15-20 minutes. Allow the cake to cool before you ice it.

Use an electric mixer to beat together the peanut butter and margarine. Gradually beat in the icing sugar, then the salt and vanilla. Add a little soy milk to loosen texture of the buttercream if needed. Beat for an extra 20 seconds after everything is well combined. Spread the buttercream over the cake. Sprinkle over the peanuts, and slice the cake to serve.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Northcote Fish & Chips

August 29, 2018


A few months back the veg*n telegraph pounced on the news that Northcote Fish & Chips were trialling a vegan menu, so when we were looking for a quick dinner in Northcote we headed straight there. The sign on the street promising vegan dim sims made it clear we were in the right place.

The vegan menu has mock prawns and scampi, a pumpkin burger, mushy peas, salad plus dim sims, fish, chips and potato cakes. We stuck with a a pretty classic fish and chip shop order - a couple of dim sims ($1 each from memory), a serve of the Vish ($8.5), a scoop of chips ($3.9) and a couple of potato cakes ($1.25 each). 


The dim sims were fine - I'm not hugely nostalgic for them, but they're nice fried little parcels of cabbage and other veggies, served with some soy sauce for dunking.


The fish was the star of the show - an oatmeal and soy fillet, wrapped in nori and beer-battered. It absolutely delivers the fried fishy goodness you've been missing. Throw in some excellent crispy potato cakes and good chips and you've got the perfect mock fish meal. The guy who runs the joint is super friendly and it's very well located - this place is destined to become a Melbourne vego staple.

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The only other post we can find about Northcote Fish and Chip is Messy Veggies announcing the vegan range back in July.
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Northcote Fish & Chips
341 High Street, Northcote
9482 9079
vegan menu
https://www.northcotefishandchips.com.au

Accessibility: There's a flat but narrow entryway and a few well spaced tables inside. You order and pay at a low counter. We didn't visit the toilets.

Saturday, September 08, 2018

Tidbit cakes & cafe

August 26, 2018


I first got to know Rhi through her blog Vegan in Melbourne and was very excited for her when she opened her own business, Tidbit cakes, in Richmond. Rhi's primary trade is in special occasion cakes but she also sells smaller daily treats from her brightly lit workspace. Everything is vegan.


Sadly our lunchtime visit was too late to claim any of the sausage rolls, but we were well satisfied with the toasties still available. Rhi blends two vegan cheeses to get the best combination of meltiness (Bio Cheese) and flavour (Vegusto). I liked that the pesto, tomato & cheese version ($10) was seedy and nutty, and loved the mustard and pickle piquance of the ham/cheese/tomato standard ($12.50).


There's a couple of little tables to eat in at Tidbit, but Rhi had also pointed out to me the dog park just down the street, so we had our sweets boxed up for a takeaway in the late winter sun. While we watched lots of cute canines frolicking, we split two excellent desserts. This is one of the best vegan cheesecakes ($7) I've ever eaten - super smooth and without a whiff of tofu, with a thick chocolatey biscuit base (get outta here, raw date crusts). We made a magnificent mess of the nutella brownie ($6), which was super-dooper fudgy, with just a little welcome crustiness around the edges.


Though we didn't buy any on this day, these guys make the most stunning vegan macarons! Sadly for us, Richmond's outside our regular circle of movement, but you can bet we'll stop in again (hopefully for a sausage roll) when we're within Tidbit's range.
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Tidbit has also appeared on the blog messy veggies.
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Tidbit cakes & cafe
255 Mary St, Richmond
0434 872 867
https://www.tidbitcakes.com/

Accessibility: There's a ramp on entry and more floor space than furniture inside. We ordered and paid at a low counter. We didn't visit the toilets.

Wednesday, September 05, 2018

Xi'an Famous

August 19, 2018


As we expounded upon our new love for youpo mian, Laura Jean McKay suggested that we give Melbourne's Xi'an Famous a go. This mini-chain has outlets in the CBD, Carlton and Caulfield, and we figured the CBD one would be a convenient dinner stop before settling in for a MIFF movie.

Online reviews warned us that this isn't a place for vegetarians, but we noticed a solid choice or two in each section of the menu: hot and cold rice or wheat noodles with chilli or sesame; a vegetable or egg burger; little fried pancakes and pies; vegetable dumplings; and cold dishes like chilli oil bean curd and shredded potato.


But we were here to test out the big bowls of noodles! Ensuring we had some variation on the youpo mian, I ordered the tomato and egg noodle ($12.80). It was enormous, with a very mild and almost milky broth, plenty of tomato and egg fragments floating through, and a large submerged mass of noodles (the same as the ones below). The overall effect was a bit bland and soupy, and yet again I was jealous of Michael's superior order!


He had, of course, the youpo mian - called spicy hot oil seared hand ripped noodles ($12.80) in English on the menu. The garlic-chilli dressing was exactly what we fondly recalled from our couple of bowls in China. I was again tentative about the chilli intensity, but it was well within my tolerance. The noodles, though, were a bit of a let-down: far from the wide flat belts we loved, these were more thick and slender and thus, much chewier.


This eatery has a casual, help-yourself style; the staff confirmed with us what was vegetarian and were quick to turn around the food. While this wasn't quite the youpo mian we're yearning for, I'd gladly return to order it (and maybe some of the other fried things!) again.

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Xi'an Famous
260 Russell St, Melbourne
9663 3993
noodlesnoodles & fried thingssoups, noodles & dumplingscold dishes & drinks

Accessibility: There's a small step on entry. Inside, furniture is a mixture of low tables with backed chairs and high tables with stools; they're densely arranged with a clear corridor through the middle (see photos above). We ordered and paid at a low counter. We didn't visit the toilets.

Monday, September 03, 2018

Union Kiosk

August 18, 2018


Cindy and I needed a CBD lunch before hitting Alia Shawkat's MIFF event. We'd usually revisit Shandong Mama, but we decided to take a break from Chinese food and hit up Union Kiosk. It's a tiny hole-in-the-wall place on a little laneway pumping out a wide array of vegan toasties and coffee. It's kind of incredible to think that Melbourne can support a wholly vegan jaffle place - we've come a long way since this blog began in 2006. 

Anyway, the menu offers up eight savoury and two sweet jaffles, ranging from delights like veg bolognaise, garlic butter and mozzarella through to a melted hazelnut Vego bar jammed between two bits of bread. It's charmingly inventive for a place with such a narrow focus. I ordered the special - roast chicken, gravy and cheese ($8). The 'chicken' was jackfruit based (kind of reminiscent of our go-to jackfruit chicken recipe) and deliciously smothered in impressively melty cheese and a decent gravy. Cindy was even bolder, ordering the jerk jackfruit with cheese and chilli pineapple ($7 - pictured, right below). She loved it, insisting it was better than mine, with nice spices on the jackfruit jerk and a decent amount of pineapple dotted throughout (a terrible mistake, if you ask me).


We grabbed some takeaway sweets for our walk to the theatre - a berry crumble slice for me and a chocolate peanut butter sandwich cookie for Cindy. They both did the job very nicely.


Union Kiosk is a fantastic CBD option - a wholly vegan place that has really nailed down a niche. We'll be back!
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There are a couple of very positive reviews of Union Kiosk on veggie blogs The Good Hearted and Messy Veggies.
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Union Kiosk
3/306 Little Collins St (on Causeway Lane)
0413 402331
menu board
https://www.facebook.com/unionkiosk/

Accessibility: Union Kiosk is tucked in a crowded, uneven laneway. There are only a couple of tiny tables with low stools. You order and pay at a low counter. We didn't visit the toilets.