There are some vegans who refuse to eat in restaurants and cafes that serve animal products. Thankfully Mr. Canny is easier going than that. We have many friends who meat and we want to be able to socialise in places that are inclusive for all. That said, we’re dining more as a family thanks to Dinky, but we’ll still manage to get out and about now and again for the purposes of the blog.
One eatery that accommodates both vegans and omnivores is Bojangles Cafe. Recently opened in Sunderland I was prompted to visit by Neil from NE Veggie Socials. This local group organises foodie meetup events in the North East specifically aimed at vegetarians and vegans. Even curious meat eaters are welcome to join in! Details of forthcoming socials can be found here.
We visited Bojangles on a quiet Monday afternoon. We’d missed the opportunity to sample their breakfast menu, although Mr. Canny pointed out it was disappointing to see there wasn’t a ‘Full English’ option for him. We discussed this with the owner and mentioned that if the Quorn sausages were subbed for good old Linda McCartney then the veggie option (minus the egg) would become vegan. We cited the fantastic Sky Apple brekkie he’s enjoyed as an excellent example of what changes can be made to attract vegan diners.
The dish recommended to try by Mr. Canny was the Chickpea and Spinach Masala, which is served on a bed of Quinoa. He enjoyed it, although afterwards said it was sauce-light which made it slightly dry. Also ordered was an avocado smoothie from the menu. Bojangles have a whole page dedicated to various juice concoctions which, based on the footfall while we were dining there, is very popular with the local gym brigade. Great for those following a clean diet.
I opted for Roasted Pepper stuffed with couscous. This was topped with Goats Cheese at my request, but it is suitable for vegans without. It was a light lunch, which was ruined by the dessert of a deliciously full fat Caramel Shortcake I had. Mr. Canny chose the healthier Apple and Pecan Slice, which are bought in from a local producer who makes ‘clean’ tray bakes. The Rocky Road looks tasty!
The owner told us she’d originally wanted to open a vegetarian and vegan cafe as her sister is vegan, but was offering meat to appeal to the local demographic. I appreciate how difficult it must be for her to set up in this economic climate, and wants to ensure she’s not limiting herself which could be the death knell for any start up.
The food at Bojangles is cooked to order and unfussy. Ouseburn Coffee is served, and you aren’t charged extra for soy or rice milk like other establishments. Prices are reasonable, there’s a baby change facility available and staff are chatty and welcoming. A great addition to the Sunderland cafe scene.
Thanks for reading,