Places to Eat in Worthing

I live in a seaside town called Worthing. I have lived here my entire life and have seen many businesses come and go through the years. When I was fifteen, I went vegan, and this meant that some of the places that I had considered my favourites became disappointing and lacking options. I live quite near Brighton so it can be annoying being that close to such a huge vegan community yet not have many options in my own town. Eventually, that changed and now there are a lot of places to eat in Worthing. This post is a shout-out to the places that really deserve it because they give great options for everyone.

I will first start off with a fully-vegan business. Cactus Kitchen Gals. They’re all about vegan junk food. Their notzarella sticks are so delicious that I am disappointed when I try supermarket’s attempts at it. Gooey and cheesey, even my non-vegan mum is impressed! They do delicious milkshakes and waffles and I’m honestly in love. They’re also largely gluten-free.

The next business is mostly vegan but has some non-vegan cheese, if I remember correctly. Wine & Reason. I don’t drink so, although many love them for their good wine, I’m all about the food. They have a small menu but it has such good options that you won’t feel like you’re missing out. When I was there, I had banana blossom fish and chips, and then they did a trio of desserts so me and my mum shared that! The Egremont also do banana blossom fish and chips which is delicious.

The third business is not just a cafe but also a great place to go if you’re on the run. The Artisan’s Pantry & Sandwich Bar. They have a lot of vegan options, as well as some non-vegan options. You can take out or sit in. I would suggest this place if you’re after a quiet cafe, also.

Next, we have The Orchard. A non-vegan business with vegan pancakes on offer. They’re quite busy and bustling so get there early! I love their pancakes.

I have to say, the next business is possibly my favourite. Street’s cafe. They have such a large vegan menu, I never know what I’m going to order! Do I want vegan fish and chips or perhaps a burger? It’s a great place to eat with family and is child-friendly. They also sell a few things.

The final business isn’t a cafe at all, but rather a shop. TEBA are always expanding their vegan range in the shop and the vegans of Worthing are very happy. I always want to go in and see what new goods they have to offer. From vegan cheese to fake meat, they will likely have what you want. And if they don’t – just ask them! They often take requests. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, they might have made something delicious too, like baklava. I love their baklava. My favourite shop in Worthing; they are also very nice in there!

If you want places that cater to everyone, when you’re next in Worthing check out the above places! I think you’ll be very happy.

Lia

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Straws Aren’t That Bad

I’ve been a vegan for five years and, in that time, I’ve learned about many advantages of being vegan that I didn’t know when I started. The truth of why 15-year-old me went vegan is because I love animals and I didn’t want to be responsible for their suffering anymore. It’s that simple. However, I have come to learn that there are other benefits too. Health is one; I’m just less at risk of heart problems and certain cancers because I’m vegan. The second biggest benefit to animal welfare, however, has to be that I’m doing a lot for the environment.

I see a lot of eco-friendly people around, saying how they have swapped straws. The truth is that straws are not the threat. They make up around 0.03% of all the plastic in the ocean and, whilst you may help the environment very slightly, the difference isn’t really all that significant just by changing straws. If you really want to help the environment, then remember that at least 46% of all plastic in the ocean comes from fishing nets. They are the single biggest threat to fish. It’s time to stop supporting the fishermen that put them there, if you want to keep the entire eco-system safe. I’m not suggesting you go vegan because I know that many people have different excuses for not becoming vegan but I am suggesting that you think more carefully about how to save the environment, if that’s your goal.

I see lots of disabled people struggling with plastic straws being swapped out for paper or metal ones and I can’t help but think that the companies swapping straws should instead be saving the environment in other, much more significant ways. They say every little bit helps but for such little impact, I do not think disabled people should have to suffer.

Cutting out fish from your diet is the first step you can make to a more environmentally secure future. Plus, you can get so many fish alternatives these days! My personal favourite is Sophie’s Kitchen fishless Smoked Salmon.  I love it on a bagel with vegan cream cheese and watercress or salad leaves. I also love Gardein fishless fillets. Vbites and Quorn also have fishless alternatives which are delicious. You can get Gardein and Sophie’s Kitchen from Sainsburys. Quorn can be found in most supermarkets. I get Vbites from Holland and Barrett though I’m sure other places do it too.

I hope this post made you think a little about the fish in the sea.

Lia

Veganism is Never Perfect

I’ve been a vegan for four years and I’ve come to a realisation in that time: no vegan is perfect. We can’t be completely vegan. It’s always a process, and it takes many more years than I’ve been one to completely master it. The vegan society listed veganism as avoiding animal exploitation as far is as practical. This means that if, like me, you take medication with lactose in it/has been tested on animals, you can’t avoid it. I really wish my medication was vegan-friendly but prescription medications are pretty much never suitable for vegans. It’s a tough fact that you have to deal with, and realise that you need your medication so that you can function and help more animals.

Another thing is companies that aren’t vegan putting out vegan products. I, personally, am usually okay with this because I need to show this company that there’s demand for vegan products, and it also means that it’s easier accessibility. Most companies aren’t vegan; it would be pretty hard for me to get products from completely vegan brands.

There are so many little things that some vegans aren’t okay with, because they have the means to not be okay with it, but as someone who can’t buy stuff for myself currently, I can’t tell my mum about all the different things. I am as vegan as I can be, and I hope that one day I am even more vegan, but it needs to be accessible as well. I eat completely vegan, and my clothes are vegan too. I’m just saying that, if you’re considering being vegan, remember that it’s always a process.

You might think you’re a bad vegan, but you’re trying. We’re all trying, and that’s what matters. I worry about so many things but I have to realise that I can’t be perfect all the time. No one can be. I’ve made mistakes, too, and that’s okay, because my intentions were good. I’ve learned from my mistakes and I’m still learning every day. It’s a long process, but my veganism will never be perfect. I don’t think anyone’s is. That’s just how it is. Until the world catches up, we’re stuck in a mainly non-vegan world and we have to learn to cope with that. It’s alright to try your best, even if that best doesn’t compare to other people’s bests. You’re doing okay.

Lia

Perceptions

So I was at a cafe today with my parents, just having lunch, when I overheard a conversation from the table next to us. A man was saying a lot of bad stuff about vegans. One thing he said was “if they were on my table, I’d have extra pigs in blankets”. He also said the line that I have heard so often from people; that if we didn’t breed animals, they’d be extinct. We actually over-breed them, so it’s a very false statement. Even if it were true, which it isn’t, I would much rather a species go extinct than have to suffer at the hands of humanity.

I know a lot of omnivores; the majority of the people I know are omnivores, and if they’re not, they are vegetarian. I don’t have any vegan friends. I hold my beliefs quite passionately but if I were to go around bad-mouthing them, I’d be a very unpopular person. I accept that it’s not something they’re willing to do. Whilst I’d like them to be vegan, I know that I have to accept them as omnivores. Being vegan is about passion and I couldn’t call myself passionate if I were constantly making them feel bad.

This guy had no right to talk rubbish about an entire group of people within society. He hasn’t even met most of us, yet he can be so rude. It kinda made me sad, because a lot of other people are probably staying similar stuff. Vegans aren’t the enemy; we’re just like you, except we live slightly differently. I’m so thankful for the small amount of friends I have, and I wouldn’t change them. But other people should not judge a book by its cover.

With me, it’s “is she antisocial?” “How rude!” “Does she speak?” “Stop fidgeting!” That is because of my autism and that is how I am judged. Next, because of my veganism, it’s “oh, she’s one of those.” “What does she eat?” “Plants have feelings too, hypocrite.” “Where does she get her protein from?” “Better not be friends with her, she’d turn me.” I have all these perceptions of me constantly floating around and it’s just upsetting to constantly have them in my life. Strangers, leave other strangers alone.Thank you.

I might not be what society deems ‘normal’ but I’m not what you think either. I’m more than just thoughts. I’m a person too.

Lia

Simple Vegan Chocolate Oreo Milkshake Recipe

So, I originally was going to follow a recipe, but I didn’t have enough resources or the right kind of resources. This meant that I made it the way I wanted to, and it was awesome! This recipe is only for one milkshake, just times the ingredients for more. If you’re allergic to soy or almonds, you can substitute them for whichever milk/ice cream you use. 

What I used:

120ml Alpro Almond Milk (not my favourite brand but it does the job)

150g Chocolate Swedish Glacé (use vanilla if you prefer that instead of a chocolate flavour)

4 Oreos

My extremely simple recipe:

1. Shove that ice cream and milk in a blender. Blend until smooth. 

2. Add 2 Oreos to the mix and blend. I did this at a lower blender setting as I wanted little bits of Oreo in my milkshake. However, I noticed some big chunks that hadn’t blended properly and had to push them to the blade halfway through. I was alright with a few chunks left in the mix.

3. I then got a sandwich bag and put the remaining 2 Oreos in it, and got a rolling pin so I could beat them up until they were tiny little bits. I sprinkled this on the top of my milkshake, a few bits accidentally missing it and going in my mouth. Unfortunate. 

4. It just about fit in my mug (I don’t drink out of glasses, but you can!) and then I drank it. It was actually delicious. 

I hope you like this recipe that is simpler than all of those ‘add this, add this, oh and this exotic ingredient’ ones on the internet. I really liked the taste. It was lovely. 🙂

Lia

Vegan Frozen/Fridge Foods

I thought I would do a post outlining different brands that do vegan frozen and fridge foods and which foods are good and which aren’t so good.

I’ve picked five brands which are quite popular food brands. Some are awful and some are amazing.

VBites

I thought I would get the awful over with first. A lot of new vegans are surprised by how ‘real’ this tastes but from the first bite I ever had of their stuff, I was disgusted, if I’m being honest. Quite a few vegans agree with me. Their restaurant is really good though — you should totally go there, but just don’t buy their frozen stuff, unless you like that taste, which would surprise me.

It was founded by Heather Mills, a well-known vegan, after marrying Paul Mccartney (and then divorcing him). I’m not really a fan of her as a person but I’m always a fan of fellow vegans so I thought I’d test it out. It was actually one of the first brands I tested out after becoming vegan. I thought that was what I’d have to get used to for the rest of my life.

The Cheatin’ range sounds like it’s going to be a good alternative to meat, but it is anything but. The slices are awful. 2/10 at best. The other items by Vbites are also as terrible; the meat style isn’t in the style of meat at all, but rather like something else entirely wearing a face mask of meat. And don’t get me started on Cheezly… the first vegan cheeze I ever tried, and I felt sick.

The worst vegan brand out there, in my opinion. Some people do like them but I am not one of them.

Overall, I give them a 2/10, for trying.

Linda McCartney 

Another one of Paul McCartney’s wives, though sadly deceased. Unlike VBites, they aren’t exclusively vegan, but they do quite a few vegan products. Their sausage rolls are lovely, I have to say, but their sausages aren’t quite as good. You can tell that they’re fake, but they are acceptable, and in gravy they are wonderful. Just, not without gravy, in my opinion.

The other day I received wonderful news that a few more vegan dishes are going to be added in the next few weeks, and that really makes me happy. They are supposed to be festive so we can taste them out in time for Christmas. Linda McCartney isn’t a brand I would have everyday, as they aren’t the best ever, but they’re decent, and sometimes that’s all you need.

I give them a 6/10, for sometimes being nice.

Quorn

For a long time, I couldn’t have any Quorn, as none of their stuff was vegan, but when I heard of the addition of a vegan range, eventually, it made me really happy as I had enjoyed their stuff when I was vegetarian.

However, their vegan stuff is generally dry, unflavoursome, and plastic-like. I am not a fan. My mum even tried seasoning up their fillet-styles with some garlic and mushrooms but it didn’t change anything, and garlic is a really strong herb! Their vegan pieces are also not very nice and I am really not a fan of their vegan stuff. Don’t even get me started on the fishless fingers…

Quorn is slightly better than VBites, in that I don’t generally feel sick when having their stuff, so I give them 3/10.

Fry’s

Like VBites, this brand is exclusively vegan, except their food is a little nicer. Their chicken-style burgers are actually one of my favourite burgers to have, as they do taste quite nice. However, not all of their food is that nice. For a while, I was a fan of their chicken-style nuggets, but recently I’ve noticed how plain they are and I’ve gone off of them. Their prawn-style pieces don’t taste a thing like prawn but they are better than the chicken-style nuggets at tasting like chicken! I have them when I want a chicken alternative, not a prawn alternative.

As well as this, their mushroom pies were a favourite of mine for a while. I have also recently gone off of this. I suppose they’re a brand that are good for short-term but you might go off them if you’re into long-term food! My mum actually once mistook curry pies for mushroom pies and I’ve never been a fan of curry pies but I had to have it anyway and I really did not like it, but that’s probably due to my taste.

Fry’s gets a 7/10.

Amy’s

Amy’s is the one on this list where I haven’t tried any of their meat-free ‘meat’ (burgers, in this case). They’re a vegetarian brand, with some vegan products, but gosh, the vegan products that they do are great!

The worst thing I’ve had of theirs is chinese noodles, which is pretty good. Not the best, but decent. I recently had their vegan lasagna for the first time. It was spicy, which I found odd, because no lasagnas I have ever tasted before were spicy. I think it was nice though, but their wasn’t enough cheeze. They should have done more, in my opinion. Next time, I’ll be adding some of my own!

Let me get onto the single-greatest vegan frozen meal I have ever tasted though: their vegan mac n cheeze. I used to have it all the time, until the freezers broke at the place I used to get it from. I was devastated and nowhere else near me did it. Everywhere sold Amy’s, but not the dish I wanted. Recently, I learnt that Ocado did it, and specifically made an order (their minimum requirements are £40) just so I could have it again. I went to lengths so extreme, because it is love.

They say distance makes the heart fonder, and it certainly did for me and this macaroni cheeze. It was just as beautiful as I remembered it, with a cheezy taste so wonderful that it could be compared with non-vegan macaroni cheeses. That macaroni cheeze is a 9/10, would be a 10 if they put it in every shop ever!

Overall, Amy’s is an 8/10, and I think the mac n cheeze brings it up a lot. If you ever want to go vegan, the first food I recommend you try is that.

If you are considering going vegan, Amy’s and Fry’s are good starting points. Linda McCartney is also nice, but I would think about staying clear of Quorn and VBites. But everyone has their own taste. 

Lia

The Reason I’m Still Vegan

So for Christmas 2015, my aunt made me some ice cream. Everything she does is lovely so I was ready to have it. Unfortunately, she’d made one mistake in the ingredients: honey. It’s the thing that a lot of people don’t classify as vegan (I even got a honey sesame snap bar for Christmas 2016!) so they tend to forget about it. I was having a dilemma about honey at that moment because I really didn’t want to disappoint her, she’d gone to so much effort, and at one point I was saying that I’d eat it — but I couldn’t eat it. Even though it was just honey, I felt so much guilt about eating it that I couldn’t. This guilt rises up in my heart and I know that I can’t change my habits.

There are two types of vegans: health vegans and moral vegans. I’m a moral vegan. I also hate breaking promises and I promised myself that I would not be tempted by anything, so I stuck to it. The few occasions I have accidentally had non-vegan stuff made me feel sick to my stomach with the guilt. I just felt like a horrible person, even though I know a lot of you probably eat it without thinking. I’m not trying to turn you, promise! I’m not like that. I’m the only vegan in my family so I’m around non-vegan substances all day. I’m quite proud that I haven’t intentionally had something but I know that if I realised something wasn’t vegan but I felt bad about not eating it, I would still not eat it, literally because of the feeling I get. I made so many mistakes in the first few months but now I’m doing a lot better!

The guilty feeling even comes when I’m eating something that tastes real but isn’t (vegan scrambled eggs!!!) because I feel like I’m breaking my promise, even though I’m not. I care so deeply for other animals, whatever they may be, wherever they may come from, that I find it easy to continue being a vegan. There are a lot of foods I liked before being vegan, but I know that there will always be alternatives, and the alternatives are usually just as good (vegan scrambled eggs, like seriously try them dudes) and I enjoy them a lot. Being a vegan is very personal to me and I am going to be a vegan for as long as I can, and I’m alright with you not being a vegan. We all have different values and we show our support to the causes we really believe in. This is a cause I believe in.

Thank you so much for reading this post,

Lia

When I Was Younger

When I was younger, one time I went to my aunt’s house (probably for Christmas, as is the tradition), and my cousin’s boyfriend-at-the-time was there. He was a vegan and I’d never met a real-life vegan before. I didn’t understand veganism. Why on Earth would anyone choose tofu over bacon? I was definitely a lover of meat and a lover of cakes. I was your typical kid! Also, why was he not sitting on the perfectly-comfortable leather sofa?

Gradually, as the years went on, I realised that he wasn’t from an alien race. He just had different beliefs. I became a vegetarian one year, vegan the next, because of my beliefs. My brother and my dad eat meat and I’m okay with that, so when a friend apologises to me for eating meat in front of me, I’m used to it, and they shouldn’t be apologising. I want to get rid of the barrier that’s blocking meat-eaters and vegans. I want to hang with someone without having to explain why I’m not eating the same things as them. I want our beliefs to be separate and not to get mixed up, because that causes me tension. When people question my beliefs, I want to just shut my ears!

It. is. my. choice. 

Also, please don’t think negatively of all vegans because a few have pushed their beliefs strongly onto you and you’re sick of it. Living with meat-eaters, if I strangled them every time they ate meat, it’d be a daily habit! I don’t mind that they eat meat either. Obviously, I’d prefer it if I lived in a vegan household, for dinner conveniences, but them eating meat: that is their choice. I’m not going to blow up their choice and they shouldn’t blow up mine.

We make choices everyday. We have different beliefs. Yet, we continue as one society. Isn’t that something to be savoured, not destroyed? Terrorism is saying there is only one way to live, and that isn’t true. I believe we can all live in the way that makes us happiest. If that’s eating meat, or not, or eating cheese, or not, then just do it! I might believe one thing, you might believe another; I might cry when I think about how some animals suffer for this, you might not think about it at all — but we can live in harmony. We can live together, whatever.

I’m adopting a jaguar this year, for Christmas. Last year, it was a Snow Leopard for my birthday. I just want to make those creatures have a happy life, like us. That’s what makes me happy, so that is important. Whatever makes you happy is important too. 🙂

What makes you happy?

Vegan Scrambled Egg!

So today, for the first time, I tried vegan scrambled egg. I was a bit sceptical of it because, I mean, how can you get the same flavour?

And then I tried it.

It tasted so real, my body almost went into a meltdown because I haven’t had scrambled egg for more than two years. My body was like noo this is real, but the powder was there. There was no egg. It wasn’t real. Yet, it was.

It tasted so authentic… I just don’t really know how they did it! It was awesome. 🙂

Vegan Double Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

I thought I’d share this amazing recipe for cookies which is vegan (and you won’t believe it).

INGREDIENTS

(can make 6 – 12 cookies, dependant on how big you want each one)

125g vegan butter (Vitalite is my recommendation)

125g granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

250g plain white flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

40g vegan chocolate chips

STEP ONE

Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl until fluffy. Stir in the vanilla extract and mix thoroughly.

STEP TWO

In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking powder, cocoa powder, and chocolate chips. Add this to the cream butter and mix until a soft dough is formed.

STEP THREE

Shape into a log, wrap in clingfilm or foil, and refrigerate for at least an hour (or preferably overnight).

STEP FOUR

To bake, preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Divide and roll the cookies into equally-sized balls before spacing them well apart on a baking sheet.

STEP FIVE

Bake in batches. Each batch should take 15 – 20 minutes to cook. Slightly underdone is best as the cookies will firm up when cooled.

STEP SIX

Leave to cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes, then carefully transfer them to a wire cooling rack.

STEP SEVEN

Enjoy! 🙂

You can adapt this recipe as you like to create different types of cookies.

I hope you enjoyed this post,

Lia 🙂