Tag: healthy food

Tortilla Vegetarian

Tortilla has always looked out for their vegetarian customers by providing a menu that is easily customisable but in recent months they have joined the Vegetarian Society – the only legally licensed vegetarian trademark registered globally.

If you don’t know who Tortilla are yet, here is a quick overview:

Tortilla started on 2007 after the owners saw a gap in the market for good burritos and tacos. More than just burrito producers, Tortilla take special care to ensure that they operate sustainably. They use grass fed beef and higher welfare chicken and pork, minimise ‘food miles’ by purchasing most of their ingredients from within the UK, prioritising organic food and providing recycling in their restaurants.

Tortilla work hard to keep the customer first by offering healthier options like the lower carb naked burrito and providing nutritional information for their meals so that customers can make informed decisions.

By the time you add free guacamole for vegetarian diners to their list of attributes, it makes it hard to not want to at least give them a try.

For locations click here

For more info visit click here

   

*Guacamole is a additional cost for non-vegetarian customers

 

Mandira Yoghurt Bar 4

Covent Garden is set to be home to London’s first ever fresh yoghurt bar.

Not to be confused with the frozen yoghurt joints that have popped up with force over the past few years, Mandira  yoghurt bar serves fresh yoghurt bowls with a light fruit or vegetable topping, making a healthy snack or a deliciously simple standalone meal.

Although this is a new concept in the UK, in Turkey, “mandıra” are traditional shops selling artisanal dairy products which are found all across the country. The Mediterranean inspiration is evident in menu options like Hummus & Za’atar, Cucumber & Mint, Aubergine & Tomato Puree and the yoghurt bowls will be presented in a classic Mediterranean style with olive oil, pepper and salt.

Mandira Yoghurt Bar 2

There will also be options more suited to a Western palette such as Raspberry & Walnut, Granola & Strawberry and Blueberry & Green Apple.

Mandira Yoghurt Bar 3

Other menu items are also inspired by the Mediterranean such as their homemade, hearty soups and sandwiches served on traditional Turkish simit bread.

What’s more, Mandira uses only the freshest ingredients, including yoghurt sourced from a handful of small farms just outside the capital. Due to open end of April/beginning of May 2017, the Mandira yoghurt bar will be open seven days a week, for eating in or take away. In the meantime you can get your yoghurt fix via Deliveroo.

More info

www.mandiralondon.com

ambience
ambience
Image credit: Shutterstock

We think it’s wonderful that so many restaurants are either featuring healthier products or specialising in healthy niches. However, as the market grows, is simply serving up a quirky latte enough or should more attention be paid to a restaurant’s ambience and environment?

A few months ago we visited a café in West London based on a recommendation from one of our readers. The menu boasted artisan coffees and classic meals made with the best ingredients so we were certain this was going to be a great visit.

Unfortunately, the background music of choice for the day was hip hop and every track was littered with f-bombs and the usual controversial terminology that is synonymous with hip hop music. For us it was nothing short of awkward but looking around no one else seemed bothered by it, so it was bottoms up for us and over the road for a latte from a high street chain who played no music.

Fast forward to the other day when we travelled to a café in East London that also came highly recommended from a reader.

Everything about the place was a win for us: a menu that had low carb options, gluten free options, offered breakfast all day and their interior invited people to chillax with play areas for children and a number of books scattered around for you to flick through. Unfortunately when it came time to pay the bill we noticed that we had been accidentally charged for an extra coffee. No biggie right? Wrong! After flagging the discrepancy at the till, the member of staff who dealt with us said ‘well, I remember making two decaf lattes’. Fair enough (sorta), so we caught the attention of the waitress who served us to ask her to confirm how many coffees she served and she put her hands up in the air defensively and remarked that it had nothing to do with her. The member of staff at the till eventually subtracted the extra coffee from the bill… after going through every single ticket.

It’s understandable that a business would want to watch the pennies, but surely you would believe the customer for the sake of the cost of a coffee, no?

These experiences led us to wonder whether if some of these healthy restaurants are relying on their food to attract the punters and giving little attention to the other factors that make a great dining experience.

Are busy bodies willing to sacrifice good service or pleasant ambience for meals that are tailored to their dietary requirements or do busy bodies want their (gluten-free) cake and want to eat it too? Let us know in the comments below!

Waitrose has launched a new range of healthy foods which have been inspired by the ever increasing trend for nutritious foods that are innovative, trendy and of course good for you. Look out for breakfast salads, sorghum and new vegan products from the popular supermarket.

We know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and the new Eggs Benedict and Eggs Florentine (269 kcals and 281 kcals respectively) breakfast salads are a great source of protein and make a change to the typical ‘busy’ breakfasts of porridge or toast. The breakfast salads contain spinach, red rice, quinoa, egg and dollop of hollandaise.

Waitrose Eggs Benedict Breakfast Salad Waitrose Eggs Florentine Breakfast Salad
Soghum, a grain that is being tipped as the new quinoa can be found in Waitrose’s Vegan Grains and Raw Vegetables Salad which as the name implies ticks a few other health trends too. The low fat salad contains raw shredded butternut squash and beetroot and mixed with a vegan raw carrot and miso dressing.

Waitrose Vegan Grains and Raw VegetablesWaitrose Wholewheat Noodles and Vegetable Stir Fry

According to Simona Cohen-Vida, Product Developer at Waitrose, ‘What healthy eaters consume in the US, British shoppers will usually follow. There’s a movement towards not cutting down or taking things out of your diet. The best way to keep health intentions on track is to add new ingredients to dishes. By adding this variety, mealtimes remain interesting and help you get natural goodness from your food, with the vegetables making it easier to reach your five a day. All of our new range is either ready-made or ready to cook so they’ll save time in the kitchen too’.

In addition to breakfast salads and sorghum, Waitrose have also responded to customer demands by adapting their stir fry meals with runner beans and broccoli cut into noodle shapes to make dishes lower in carbs. They also now sell quinoa fried rice and are the first UK supermarket to sell fresh wholewheat noodles.

Well done, Waitrose, well done.

Charcoal Bagel 2017 food trend

2017 Food Trends

By BBB

2017 food trends

A New Year wouldn’t be complete without a new food trend to follow. So just to make sure you aren’t caught on the back foot, here are some of the 2017 food trends you should be on the lookout for:

Purple Foods

Purple Broccoli 2017 Food Trend
Image Credit: Bruce S

It looks like purple is the new black. According to Whole Foods, who monitor consumer food behaviour, richly coloured foods are the ones to watch in 2017 so we can expect foods like purple cauliflower, black rice, purple asparagus, and purple corn to start popping up on menus and in supermarkets near you.

Flexitarianism

flexitarianism 2017 food trend
Image credit: Med.com.au

Also known as semi-vegetarianism, this trend sees people reducing their meat intake and even potentially restricting it to certain times such as weekends. Whether or not you see it as vegetarians eating meat occasionally or meat eaters eating more plant based foods, is six of one and half a dozen of the other. What this trend does show is that plant based meals are becoming a priority for many.

Turmeric Lattes

turmeric powder 2017 food trend
Image Credit: Steven Jackson

Turmeric which began to gain some ‘trend traction’ seems likely to remain popular in 2017 so expect turmeric lattes to become more of a staple and less of a trend. Known for its many benefits, turmeric combined with warm milk and the sweetener of your choice may seem ‘unconventional’ but makes for a great hot drink.

Charcoal

Charcoal Bagel 2017 food trend

Yep, the black stuff. Normally reserved for balancing an upset stomach, charcoal is gradually muscling it’s way onto the food scene. Waitrose currently stock some products such as charcoal and sesame biscuits, a charcoal and chia seed-topped bagel and cold pressed charcoal juice. The jury is still out on whether or not this is a useful new trend but it will certainly make for some cool Instagram snaps.

Vegetable Crisps

vegetable crisps 2017 food trends

Alternative crisps look set to be on the rise as well. While a few brands have ventured into the world of kale crisps and root vegetable crisps in recent years, alternative crisps are also likely to become more of a trend in 2017. So look out for your favourite (or least favourite veg) to be served in a handy portable crisp packet.

Ultimately, these trends show that the restaurant industry listens to what we want. According to the results of a recent survey among catering specialists and restaurants about food trends, we should be seeing more gluten free options, healthy alternatives, locally sourced food, vegetarianism and veganism.

If anything, these trends show that we are becoming more and more health conscious which can only be a good thing. So here’s to a healthy (and balanced) 2017!

Savage Salads

By BBB

We heard about Savage Salads through the grapevine (by grapevine we mean spotting someone with a Savage Salads box and interrogating them for details) and found them halfway down Strutton Ground near St James’ Park station.

Savage Salads Strutton GroundWhen we visited, the Savage Salad stall was popular  and the branding kinda made you feel like you were doing something a little rebellious – in a good way.

Although the humble salad has generally evolved from its leafy and unsubstantial reputation, the Savage Salads offering is definitely a break from the norm.

The base was a combination of four different types of salads:

  • White & red cabbage, dried apricots, kale, orange, poppy seeds
  • Roasted beetroots, quinoa, pumpkin seeds
  • Grilled aubergine, peppers, chickpeas, rocket, chilli and
  • Panzanella

Savage Salads Halloumi  Savage Salads Chicken

Our salads were dressed with a drizzle of olive oil before being topped with grilled halloumi on one salad and rosemary, thyme & lemon marinated chicken breast on the other. Everything was prepared right in front of us, the flavours had a summery vibe and the salads were delicious.

Savage Salads Freshly Prepared

The only criticism we could find was that the cutlery felt a lslightly insubstantial for such a savage salad – more time was spent trying to recover chickpeas that fell back in the box than actually enjoying the chickpeas.

While there is no nutritional information available, given how good the ingredients are its safe to say that the salads are good for ya. If you are coeliac it’s worth double checking which of the salads may have gluten.

The simple menu made a refreshing change as it’s always great to find a place that sticks to a couple of things and does them well – too much choice can be bewildering for a busy body at lunchtime.

If you want to give try them you can currently find them at:

Berwick Street Market in Soho Monday-Friday

Strutton Ground in Victoria Monday-Wednesday

St Giles in the fields market in Covent Garden every Thursday

For up to date information check out their website and connect with them via social media

facebook twitter Instagram-v051916_200

 

Cash is set to be a thing of the past at healthy food chain Tossed. Their two newest branches – Coleman Street and Upper Thames Street – will be cash-free branches, accepting payments via contactless card, chip card, or an NFC mobile payment app such as Apple Pay only. Furthermore, the new branches will also be fitted with self-service kiosks putting the high street salad bar well ahead of the curve.

According to NFC World, the remaining Tossed branches will also be adopting this approach. The rationale appears to be to embrace opportunities that technology enable and to also reduce paper use.

Tossed - WorkTossed have never been averse to technology and utilised screens at tills to provide customers with further information on their products, however, this is a leap even for these forward thinkers.

BBB does wonder if this approach could potentially exclude some potential customers but on the surface it looks like the cash-free approach could be ideal for the super busy.

Balanced Busy Bodies is always on the lookout for products that are healthy but our interest will naturally be piqued by a product that whose name implies that it could help you look better.

The Beauty’In brand was developed in Brazil with beauty in mind. Their products claim to supplement the body’s nutrients without the addition of sugar, preservatives or trans fats. We sent a bar to a loyal BBusyBody to find out what she thought and this is what she said:

‘When BBB sent me the Beauty’In Beauty Bar to try I was delighted, a snack that makes me look good? I couldn’t wait to tuck in. Seriously though, this beauty bar with zero preservatives, zero artificial dyes and zero glucose syrup was the kind of snack I had been looking for.

I have been trying unsuccessfully to end a habit of unhealthy snacks that I have developed and I am aiming towards a healthier lifestyle.

The bar is actually not quite a bar, it’s actually six little cereal cubes, so when you open it, you could share if you wanted to. Not me though – haha.

The flavour I got was Apple, Raisins, Cashew and Honey.Beauty'In Bar

On my first bite I wasn’t overly impressed, it had a sort of tanginess to it that I wasn’t sure I liked, 5 more squares later though and I had acquired the taste and it  really filled the gap.

The bar has honey as a sweetener and is also enriched with vitamins, collagen.  Unfortunately, I don’t think eating collagen will get rid of your wrinkles.  Although many food products claim it does, there has been no scientific evidence to prove that. However it is a fantastic protein and does you no harm in eating it as protein helps you to stay fuller longer and that is fantastic.

I guess the real question is: ‘if it doesn’t get rid of wrinkles why on earth is it called a beauty bar’?

Well it’s because the company believe in beauty from the outside can only be achieved from taking care of yourself within, so they produce a range of products with this philosophy.

They have four other bars in their range available from Harvey Nichols for £2.50 – I will be checking the other flavours out!’

For more info check out:

www.beautyin.com

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