Vegan Sunday Lunch at The Northumberland Hussar

A whinge of mine – and many other veggies – is the lack of Sunday Roast options in the Toon and its surrounding areas. I wrote a piece listing all of the places you could find a proper dinner on the Lord’s Day without having to chain yourself to the stove when you don’t eat meat, but I have to say there weren’t as many as I’d anticipated. It seems many kitchens believe we much prefer salad or risotto, when this couldn’t be further from the truth.

The persistence of a vegan friend paid off with one of her local boozers. The growth of the vegan food market is noticeable even in Newcastle and she felt The Northumberland Hussar was missing a trick by not offering a SFV Sunday lunch option on account of its rarity. Some pubs will have a Nut Roast available, but often it will be bound by egg. The Hussar was one of these establishments, which put a block on them being able to adapt their fare. Based on her gentle prodding they decided to give it a go, and we duly popped along for the first service to give it a go.

There was no mention of the new choice on the menu but hopefully it will appear officially soon. I was surprised to see the vegetarian dish was cheaper than the meat selection. Some veggies do complain that our food isn’t cheaper without the ‘premium’ ingredients but I have to admit I’ve stopped being overly concerned by this. I’m sometimes just pleased to see a restaurant thinking outside the box and offering the alternatives. 

As the first punters through the doors we were served promptly with our huge plates of food. One thing that can’t be said about the Hussar’s lunch is that the portions are stingy. It also looked like a ‘proper’ Sunday lunch with plenty of veggies and gravy. Using vegan Quorn, the kitchen had plated up both a fillet and pieces. We suggested that instead of using both they choose one or t’other. Our feeling was the fillet more closely resembles a piece of chicken and therefore adds to the ‘experience’ of the meal.

Having previously eaten the Quorn Pieces we were surprised by how flavourful they were cooked in the veggie gravy. As something I have knocking round in the freezer I’d not considered using them as a substitute on a Sunday lunch before (see my recipe for a Vegan Hotpot using them here). It’s a shame the Nut Roast isn’t suitable as I may have preferred that to something available in the supermarket, but I’m certainly not knocking them for it. For both of us it was the gravy, crispy roast potatoes, creamy mash, and the parsnips that were the stand-out parts of the meal. Many pubs serve up microwaved veg and we felt the Hussar’s was of a higher standard than some we’d encountered historically. We did say that the green beans were overdone, however.

Pictured above is the vegetarian version of the lunch, featuring a Nut Roast as the meat substitute. I personally think £8.95 is great value for money for the amount of food served up by the pub. We both struggled to finish our plates, which is definitely the sign of a good feed on a Sunday. There’s no dairy/egg free dessert option yet, but give Alex time to badger them some more about that! I even heard the chef talking about vegan Yorkshire Puds as I was leaving, so we’ll see how this develops. Hopefully this new Sunday lunch option will be a success for them.

Thanks for reading,

Pip x

You can find out where to find a veggie Sunday lunch in Newcastle here.

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