Review: Vegan Deluxe Set Menu at Bombay Express

When it comes to curry house classics we’re always recommending Bombay Express and we were excited to see their new Vegan Deluxe Set Menu for April. It expands upon the successful Veganuary menu with some special new treats.

After the customary poppadom course we tried the new vegan starter. Billed as Dal soup we were served a flavourful, thin dal. Perfectly spiced and livened up with a wedge of lemon the soup was delicious. Plus it came in a super cute pan thing.

For the main course we each ordered one of the new dishes to split between us. Both came with rice, channa massala (rich, slightly smokey, and always a favourite) and nann. We paid extra for one of the nann to come with vegan cheese on top. Cheese topped nann in an old school guilty pleasure of ours. The cheese on top tastes like a coconut one which I’m not usually a fan of but works quite well with Indian food.

When using the cheesy nann to scoop up the Vegetable Massala (apparently the first vegan massala in Devon!) I was transported back to my teens. And just like I remember from being a spice shy teenager it was creamy, comforting, goodness.

We also ordered the sagg paneer which was good but not quite as fab as the Veg Massala. The cheese was a little overwhelming in the curry. We finished, once again, with the delicious coconut tart and left happy.


Review: Bombay Express Veganuary Menu

All the month long our local Indian take away and restaurant Bombay Express is serving up a four course Veganuary special. Some of the dishes are taken from their usual menu, some of them are brand new, all of it sounded delicious, and with members of the local Vegan Facebook group planning a meet up we thought we’d eat in for a change.

After popadoms for the table the vegan menu gives you the choice of vegetable spring rolls or vegetable samosas. Which was a little disappointing. Kate got the spring rolls and I got the samosas and aside from the shape there wasn’t much difference.

The pastry was nice and crisp but the filling was pretty standard. The salad garnish of crisp lettuce, tomato, cucumber slice and lemon wedge is fine when it comes with your take away but looks a little plain on the side of your starter.

There was more choice for the main. Kate went with her all-time favourite: saag aloo. I had channa masala. Both of these dishes are on our regular order and Bombay Express make them well. I especially like the channa masala, the sauce is silky and the chickpeas are cooked just right. We each got a side of aubergine bhajee, naan bread and a rice.

I wasn’t expecting to be that excited by the naan but I was. I love a plain roti but there is something special about naan which I didn’t realise I even missed before I bit into it. The aubergine was lovely too. The sauce was flavourful and it was the high point of the meal. So I stole Kate’s portion while she wasn’t looking. We really enjoyed our main. It was a struggle to leave room for the dessert. But we did. Because we knew what was coming.

Coconut Chocolate Tart. It’s gluten free, it’s vegan, it’s delicious. It’s everything you want in a tart. The chocolate filling is smooth and light. You barely know you’re eating it. Then you realise you have no more chocolate left, sob a little and hope it stays on the menu past the end of January.

Bombay Express is at the top end of Belgrave road and their Veganuary Menu is available for the rest of the month.

Vegan Options at Bombay Express 

Bombay Express is our local Indian and while I’ve known for a while that it has vegan options I’ve been reluctant to try them. I do prefer to go to places were vegan options are marked on the menu because I’m awkward and panic easily. But recently they had an offer for world vegan day so I held Kate’s hand and bravely went in to ask what we could have.

There is quite a lot of choice. You can have a vegetable balti, jalfrezi or madras. There’s also garlic chilli vegetable on the menu. Bombay potatoes, aloo gobi, channa massala, tarka dhal, saag aloo and mushroom bhaji can all be ordered as a side or a main. So between me and Kate we polished off four side dish sized portions. Clockwise from top left we have the dhal which is super creamy, a saag aloo that’s full of flavourful spinach, a rich channa masala and a delicious portion of Bombay potatoes.

It’s always great to have another vegan take away option, it’s brilliant to have one that is so very yummy.

Grocery Store Tips And Tricks: Vegan Mofo Day 12

I have a love for food shopping that leaves most people baffled and questioning my sanity.  Unfortunately I just don’t have very many tips and tricks. I’m not really organised about my food shopping. I have found some fun products in my time thought. If you’re in Torquay all of these were found in the Newton Road branch.

Three of the Best: Accidentally Vegan at Asda

bacon fries

Bacon Flavour Crinkle Fries

Some things you just buy to amuse yourself and these crinkle fries are one of those things. Crinkle is the second best shape for a chip after curly and bacon is, apparently, the greatest flavour. Put them together and what do you get? A chip that tastes like a warm frazzle. That’s not necessarily a bad thing.


Find them in the freezer section with the other chips.


Garlic Dough Balls 

Made with oil and not butter these doughballs are suitable for vegans. That does make it oily though. Have a napkin on hand for when you eat these. They are deliciously garlicky and and are perfect on the side of your pizza or pasta.


Find them in the freezer section near the pizza.

mint thins

Mint Thins

Mint with chocolate on top. Own brand After Eights but without the dairy by-products. Delicious. It’s mint and chocolate, what more can I say.

mint thins open

Find then by the sharing sweets.

Vegan Cheese is Real Cheese: Vegan Mofo Day 6

When the Kind Grind opened back in July they didn’t have a kitchen which meant they only had cakes and pre-packaged snacks.  I’m not complaining, I love both of those but sometimes I wasn’t something a little more savoury. Luckily in the last couple of months they’ve got the kitchen fixed up and brought new additions to the menu. Exciting.


If you are around for breakfast you can get yourself a lovely crumpet with a variety of toppings. Come lunch and you can get a mezze platter, a baguette, a panini or try a special. We’re going to talk about the paninis today. Because it’s cheese themed!


Kate went for a cheese and pesto panini. I think, technically it comes with tomatoes but she asks for it without large slices of vegetables. It was yum. The cheese is delicious. Importantly they also get the timing on the panini press just right. I’ve been burned by an over cooked panini before. Literally.


Typically, I had mine with chilli. My love of chilli is, I think, rather well documented. I’m loving it. It may have become my favourite quick lunch. And I can’t help but being excited that vegan cheese has gone from barely edible to delicious in the last few years. Not to mention how great it is to have a local vegan cafe!


Papa Johns Arrives in Torquay and A Defence of Chain Pizza

The first time I saw a Papa Johns I wondered what the point was. Within walking distance there were two other pizza places nearby. Two amazing local places with fantastic pizza. Of course that was before I vegetarian, never mind vegan. And before I moved to TQ1. If a chain that offers vegan food wants to move in I’m not going to complain.

Can I have all of the veggies but none of the cheese?

When we got back from Skye we were tired and lacked food in the cupboards. A perfect time for a take away. All I needed to do was add toppings, remove cheese (in that order or it doesn’t work) and wait for delivery.

Shortly before this revolution in Torre’s pizza scene there was another one. We have Deliveroo now. Both Rock Garden and Pizza Express are available through them. You can only order from the menu at Pizza Express so that means the Vegan Giardiniera. This has the benefit of vegan cheese but it could really have done with something like… twice as many toppings. Or three times. I’m not picky, just hungry.

Unfortunately comes without tripod thing

I’m pretty happy with my delivery pizza options these days. Though I’d be jumping for joy if more local places offered vegan options. I love the vegan cheese that Pizza Express offers but in terms of coustomizing your toppings and value for money Papa Johns comes out ahead. I’m not sure what I think of the Special Garlic sauce though…

Vegan On The Go: Torquay Style

Since Jeremy Corbyn didn’t come out as a vegan the Guardian has stepped up it’s game with veganism articles. We got two on Tuesday. One of them was called Vegan On The Go: high-street options that make an animal-free diet easy. It’s by Alexis Gauthier. It does not contain one suggestion that would work in Torquay. We don’t have Pret, our M&S and Sainsburys are out of town. No Leon, no Benugo. And all of the options are salad. Except the one that suggests going into a supermarket for a pot of humus.

This does not make an animal-free diet seem easy. Or appetising. Or possible outside London. So I’m going to present my list to you. Vegan On The Go. Food available on Fleet Walk to Upper Union Street. That you can eat while walking, waiting for a bus or in complete violation of the no eating signs of the bus. Grab and go only, nothing that requires a special order. This is a list for those of us in a rush.

Starbucks: A few options available but the Kale, Jalapeno and Slaw Wrap is my favourite.

I really did take this picture on a bus

Cafe Nero: A couple of wraps.

Tesco: There are lots of little bits and bobs you can find in the chiller at the front. There’s hummus and veggies, prepared fruit, and, my to go snack everywhere, vegetable samosa.

Love in Pastry

Warrens: Pastys. This is my favourite option. And I know I’ve written about them before but I love them.  Get yourself a Pasty from Warrens to fill you up. They’re fab.

Boots: I haven’t tried it yet but there’s a vegan salad pot.

So there are five genuinely quick and easy options for a  vegan lunch you don’t even need to think about. If you’re in Torquay.