Kochi’s first vegan eatery provides appetising options to battle the scorching summer
Very few of us will say no to a chilled glass of lassi in this unforgiving weather. However, many foodies may think twice before taking a sip if the lassi is announced to be dairy-free. Well, we’re here to tell you that you don’t need to be apprehensive about tasting any dish served behind the green doors of this hard-to-spot cafe on Quiros Street.
The brainchild of New Zealander, Bree Mcilroy, Loving Earth Yoga Cafe is truly unique as it’s a 100 per cent plant-based diner. The largest misconception surrounding vegan cuisine is that it most probably is comprised of just salads and fruits.
This is despite the fact that conventional everyday fare in Kerala is vegan to a large extent too—examples range from plain dosa served with sambar, puttu and kadala or appam made with coconut milk.
So we visit this yoga expert’s coir-jute-bamboo lined establishment, situated in Fort Kochi, which is pushing things to the next level by serving everything from cold-pressed juice and energy balls made of chia-sunflower seeds to vegan ‘cheese’cake and sorbet berry crumble.
“People who are trying to stop eating animal products like butter, cheese, meat, etc should check out our place. Vegan food is touted to be energising, as it further oxygenates your body,” begins Rishi Tiwari, the chef behind the vegan delights at this restaurant.
“We provide a wide variety of dishes familiar to meat consumers but after replacing certain ingredients with plant-based and cruelty-free products like tempeh and tofu (made from soy milk),” adds the Mumbaikar, as I slurp down on a refreshing mango lassi crafted with creamy coconut milk yoghurt, juicy mangoes, and maple syrup.
Those who are tired of all the vegetarian Indian specials that are available literally everywhere in the city will thoroughly enjoy the dishes at this spot. A fan of Oriental seafood? Try their vegan alternative: sushi made with organic brown rice, ginger-garlic tofu (marinated for 12-hours) or nori seaweed, lush veganaise, crispy carrot, red capsicum, lettuce and wasabi. Persian delicacies get you drooling? Opt for their chickpea or beet hummus served with sesame and garlic pita doused with extra virgin olive oil.
Nevertheless, I choose the Italian route by tucking into their best-selling pizza, Mrs Rosemary. Named after one of their favourite patrons, it comes with vegan ‘beef’, homemade BBQ sauce, red onion and fresh rosemary sprigs.
“Basically, there’s no vegan cafe in the city and we are introducing a new concept. Here we can play around with food, and people can try specials like vegan ‘chicken’ tikka that is made from a lot of meat substitutes like soy and mushroom,” concludes Bree, an expert yoga practitioner.
Open from 12-3 pm and 6-9 pm.
Pic credit: instagram.com/lovingearth.fortkochi