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Simon “Indiana” Jones & the Temple of Seitan

wp-1514843781635.jpg1st January: 2:30pm… so here we are on Day 1, and after surviving a New Year’s Eve hangover of headachy misery and a 2.2 mile walk from Stepney we arrive at the “Temple of Seitan”, a vegan fast food joint in Hackney and get in the mercifully short queue…I’ve been here before when it first opened and they had a few teething issues with running out of bread and some of the menu, but we were hoping today would be hassle free…

[Carly adds: not least because when you’re hung over and hungry you just need fried food! The Temple of Seitan offers ‘fried chicken’ that is actually deep fried gluten, and a variety of vegan-friendly treats – I was particularly keen to sample their take on my beloved mac n’ cheese…]

We chose a Temple Spicy Burger with fries, and a two-fillet box with a side of Mac n “cheez”, and we weren’t disappointed by the quality or quantity of the food – lots of it, for about £18.

The hot burger was lovely [the ‘cheese’ used in it, my first encounter with vegan cheese, was perfectly serviceable, a pleasant surprise!] and the fries were crispy and tasty too. As for the fillet, it was tasty with a nice texture [not exactly like chicken, but not unlike it; though denser, like the breaded turkey steaks I had as a child].
The Mac and cheez was lovely, with a smoky/mustardy initial taste, a nice creamy texture and well cooked pasta. [For me, the texture was noticeably different to normal macaroni – rougher and slightly chewier – but not unpleasant for that. The sauce also lacked the distinctive gloop/stretch of classic mac n’ cheese which betrayed that there was no real cheese in it, but it was a perfectly satisfying and yummy dish, flavoursome and topped with lovely vegan ‘sour cream’.]

Over all it was a good meal & super tasty [and hugely filling!] – it’s not a perfect chicken analogue, but it’s getting there and with the accompanying sauces, pickles and stuff it comes pretty close indeed!

The only gripe is the ordering/service set up… as I said there was a queue and we were outside for a bit – once you get in, you place your order and then seemingly you stand in the way of everyone else whilst they try and order themselves – once your food is ready (we had a delay cos the Mac and cheez ran out), the staff shout out your name – or more appropriately, whisper it inaudibly under the loud music that blares out of the speaker that you have to wait under – so there’s a chance you’ll miss your order if you aren’t on the ball (or if you are hungover, trying to stop your eyes falling out, and starving!)…but that can be sorted easily I’m sure!

In other news, while in Hackney we were going to pop into the nearby wholefood store “Greens and Grain” to get a spaghetti squash for a good pasta alternative and different taste/texture… but they were closed! Next week I’ll venture back.

Will definitely be going to the Temple again 🙂 [A hearty hangover cure, definitely recommended.]

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