Vegan & Raw in Camden!

Hellooo, it’s been too long! As some of you may know, I spent the majority of last week volunteering at the first ever UK Fruitfest! (though hopefully, the first of many!). I got back (Very exhausted) on Sunday, and have since then spent my time recovering! It’s amazing how you never really realise how worn out you are, until you stop for a moment… Phew.

Anyway, more on that later. I still have one more post to share with you all about my time in Camden, so here it is! (I have so many posts to share with you all! Catching up slowly though!)

When we finally arrived in London, we are very hungry! I posted about what foods we had managed to take (and find!) on our journey to London here, but I knew where we would be going as soon as we arrived.. so I made sure not to fill up too much..

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InSpiral!
This is my favourite cafe. It’s where I first tried gourmet raw food (back when I thought going completely raw was crazy!). I’d always been interested in raw food, and being able to try it here years ago was fabulous. Thankfully, raw pizza is still on their menu! So I knew what I was getting for lunch!

(Before we made it to Lunch, we quickly dropped our bags off at the hostel we were staying in. On our walk back into Camden, we stumbled across a little coffee shop, Cakes n’ treats,Β with the words “Vegan Coffee-shop” on the banner! We could not resist popping in to have a quick look! Stupidly, I forgot to take any photos! But there was huge, gorgeous cakes, cookies, tarts, croissants, bagels.. so many goodies! My brother couldn’t resist buying a mint chocolate chip cookie to share. Look at the size of it!

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I tried a little nibble of this, and it was really yummy. Not my kind of thing, but the boys loved it! Getting in their junk food fix before heading to the healthy yumminess that is InSpiral! πŸ˜‰ )

Oh InSpiral.. how I have missed you…

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Raw pizza, in all it’s glory! This was even nicer than the one I had last time! From what I can remember, the first time that I tried it, the base was quite thick, and almost gummy because of it. This however had a wonderfully thin base, soft enough to cut, but definitely held it’s own with all of the other ingredients! I was topped with an orangey sauce (I have no idea what it was, cashew cheese maybe? But it was glorious), lots of fresh tomatoes, olives and salad, and the most amazing green pesto. I could eat this every day.

We all tried a bit of each-others food, and everyone agreed that this was amazing! Even my non-raw, only-recently-eating-salad brother said he preferred this over his cooked choice! Another point to raw food!

My eyes were a bit bigger than my belly, and I also got a side salad. You pay for the bowl size, and then ask them to fill it up with whatever side dishes / salads that they happen to have that day! I got a mix of creamy rocket salad, Caesar salad, and a fresh and tasty carrot and seaweed salad. Oh my god, just amazing. The girl who doesn’t like creamy salad dressings is officially a convert. I was so sad I was too full to finish this! But thankfully my partner helped me out ;).
I can definitely see a Caesar salad on my list of things to make very soon!

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I also got this to drink. Lychee, berries and basil – How could I not try it? This was so light and fruity. The basil flavour was very subtle, but added a little something different to this. Everyone loved this drink.

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This was my brothers choice – Vegan Shephards pie with lentils, and a side of potatoes and some curry-dish the server told him he “had to try”!

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He wasn’t amazingly keen on the shephards pie, but the rest he enjoyed. I tried a small bite of the shepherds pie, and it had a very nice, savoury flavour. I’m not a big fan of “comfort food”, but if you are you’d love it.

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This was my partners choice. I think this was a nut roast, topped with butternut squash mash and tahini. Very nice, rich flavours that complimented each-other well. He really enjoyed this.

My partner got a side dish of potatoes, polenta fries, and seasoned broccoli with cabbage, which he loved. The polenta was really flavourful too. It could have been a little crispier, but it was still very nice.

Stuffed to the brim (and after looking wistfully at the gorgeous ice-creams I was too full to eat..) we set off to explore Camden. If you have never been, I would highly recommend it. It’s like a City all in itself. Huge decorations on the buildings, a gorgeous bustling market, crazy shops and awesome people. I could easily spend a week exploring it. Just under 2 days was no-where near long enough!

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Wandering around Cyberdog. Even if you’re not into raves, you need to check this shop out. It’s a weird and wonderful place full of amazing things. Just brace yourself – the music is loud! I love that the staff wear cyberdog clothes too. Everyone is so funky and colourful!

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Just case you’re wondering where Cyberdog is, just keep an eye out for the giant metal man!

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This pattern went all the way from the floor, up and up several stories inside one part of the market. How gorgeous is that? I particularly loved the peacocks.

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The entrance to one part of the market! So so beautiful. Keep an eye out as you’re walking through Camden market – you will see horse statues everywhere!

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Testament to how bizarre Camden market is – down a small alley way, you see a chandelier hanging from the roof! Amazing.

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Beautiful art shop in the market. I so wish I wasn’t taking the bus home – there were so many wonderful things I would have loved to take home with me!

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A quick snap from inside one of the many gorgeous stores! I’ll take one of each, of everything please!

We saw too much for me to photograph everything, so I’ll let you see it for yourself. After all of that wandering, it was time to head back to the hostel and get changed for the gig we were seeing! The band we were going to watch are called “Post-modern Jukebox” , and they do old-time covers of modern songs. So we donned our vintage looks, ready to head out for a night on the town!

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My two dapper gentlemen! My partner on the left (wearing what he pretty much wears every day!) and my brother on the right, looking rather dashing!

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I look a little bit dazed in this photo! But my partner looks lovely, so I had to include it :).

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I’ve been waiting for a reason to wear this dress for a long time, so I was very happy to finally be able to wear it. πŸ˜€
It didn’t actually fit before Christmas, so I was very surprised after trying it on the week before that it now fits perfectly! I didn’t start eating raw to lose weight, but it is nice to be able to fit into my old clothes again, whilst eating lots of yummy food too! (Not to mention, feeling great at the same time!)

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Speaking of yummy food, we went out to grab a bite to eat before heading off to the gig. The menu at InSpiral was pretty much the same as what we ate for lunch, so we decided to see what else Camden had to offer. (Though I couldn’t resist grabbing a small to-go salad to take with me!)
We found a little falafel stand just as they were closing, so we just managed to grab some food there! My partner and brother both got falafel wraps – a large wrap, generously filled with hummus, falafel, salad, pickles, tahini and hot sauce. Unfortunately, my brother wasn’t a fan, so Lee (me partner) finished his off for him! Luckily we were sat oposite a stall selling fresh mango, so Ben (my bro!) was able to fill up on that! Not a bad dinner in my books!

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I got a small box of falafel, salad, pickles and hot sauce, which was really lovely.

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The falafel and hot sauce added a nice spicy kick to the InSpiral salad! I couldn’t eat it all, but it was gorgeous.

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Rockin’ and ready to boogie! Getting excited at the venue waiting for the performance to start! It was great to see so many other people dressing up too. It’s always lovely to be surrounded by people just as crazy as you.

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It was pretty impossible to get a good photo of the performers, but believe me when I say that this was the best gig I have ever been to. The atmosphere, the performers, the singing.. just amazing. I would highly recommend seeing these guys play if you get the chance. The gig ended at 10pm, and were still buzzing, so we decided to wander around Camden and see what jumped out at us. We hadn’t been walking 10 minutes when the sound of acoustic guitar drew us in to a pub! We stayed there and watched a very good singer perform his stuff (and watched the very drunk people dancing like fools, which was highly amusing!).
After he finished, we decided to end the night with a visit to the Worlds End pub! My partner had never been there before, so me and Ben wanted to show him what it was like.

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Fun times ensued (as you can see!) – and I got to try this gorgeous ginger cider! I’m a huge fan of anything gingery, and love gingerbeer, so I was very happy to try this. It was delicious! (I forgot to get a photo, but the bottle recommended it being served in a jam-jar – so my brother went and asked at the bar for one, and they looked! Unfortunately, none could be found, but how awesome/funny/amazing is it that they tried? )

We ventured to the balcony to enjoy our drinks for a little bit, and got to enjoy some rather interesting decor!

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Just hanging with our new pal ;).

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Giant spider would like to join you for a drink please..

After many laughs, and a night full of chatter, we finally pottered back to our hostel for a well needed rest! We had to be up fairly early to check out, and we knew just where we were going for breakfast..

That’s right, Inspiral!!

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The breakfast that I chose was this beautiful creation – a raw, fruit-filled crepe! Filled with a gorgeous cashew cream (flavoured with apple and cinnamon I think?), with fresh banana, apple, strawberries, and what I think is a gogi berry sauce! This was absolutely delightful. The only negative point I could possible give it, is that it would have done with some more fresh berries to cut through the richness of the cream and banana. But aside from that, just heavenly.
I also had a fresh smoothie, “Berry Bliss” – Blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, acai, bananas, dates and avocado. This was quite nice and mild tasting. Surprisingly, not as packed with berry flavour as I would have thought! But nice nonetheless. (I just looked up what was in it now, and noticed that my banana and avocado hating partner drank this happily! Maybe I should sneak some into his next smoothie πŸ˜‰ )

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Both Ben and Lee got the full English breakfast, and absolutely loved it. The baked beans are home-made, and really are quite tasty. The mushrooms and tofu are beautifully flavoured too. I tried a tiny bite of the sausage (dirty minded diners beware, rude jokes will be made!), and it was amazingly flavourful. Vegan sausages can so often be dry, but this was so moist and bursting with flavour! Not something I’d want to eat a lot of, but I can certainly see the appeal.
Overall, a great start to our day!
We spent the rest of our time wandering around Camden, re-visiting any shops we wanted to buy things from, and generally just enjoying the sun and atmosphere of Camden!

I spied a fresh juice and smoothie stall in the market, and just had to stop to try some!

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Everything it made right in front of you, from very fresh ingredients! I needed from juicy refreshment, so I opted for a Jamaica juice, with some added kale.

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This was so delicious. Such a lovely colour, and tasty too. I love that it’s filled right to the very top of the lid (not just to the top of the cup-line). The fresh juice is blended with ice, making it wonderfully cold and refreshing on what was a very hot day!

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Here I am, starting to think that maybe I should have ordered a large…

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You could also buy these young thai coconuts from the stall. None of us had tried one of these before, and oh my goodness, you Have to try these! If you think you like coconut, or it you don’t, you should still try this! The flavours are still coconutty – but nuttier, richer, yet more refreshing at the same time. And the flesh is almost like a fresh coconut-nutty-toasty flavoured jelly. I had a hard time not eating all of Lee’s! Yum, (He very kindly shared lots of it with me though!)

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After a huge breakfast, and so much juice and coconut, no-one was particularly hungry for lunch. Since I knew me and Lee had a long journey home ahead of us, I popped back to InSpiral to pick up some goodies to-go (which I mentioned in my previous travel post). I also grabbed myself several bags of kale chips, some crackers, raw truffles, and this gorgeous little pot of raw ice-cream!

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I’ve been hoping to try their ice-cream for such a long time, but normally I’m far too full to sample any! Not today though! I had hoped to try their coffee flavour, but since they were out, I went for Lucuma maple pecan. Such a great flavour pairing. Everyone agreed that this was delicious (and they very kindly only tried a small bite so that I could enjoy it, as they knew I’d been anticipating this for so long! The men in my life are so sweet πŸ™‚ ). I could have eaten a pint of this, but I think the little tubs are perfect little treat-sized morsels! I hope to try many more flavours in the future!

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I also picked up this bottle of Raspberry & Elderflower Kombucha out of curiosity. I’ve only tried kombucha once before, and I thought it was absolutely vile! But I’ve heard so many people talking about how lovely it is that I just had to give it a second chance, and I’m so glad that I did! This was thoroughly enjoyable :).

The smell is a little like vinegar, but don’t let that put you off. The flavour is sparklingly sweet and tasty. I’m a kombucha convert!

Well, that’s all that we had time for in our stay in Camden! I hope you’re enjoyed my (rather lengthy!) post :).
I’m hoping to soon be able to tell you all about my adventures at the raw fruit fest. But for now, I’ll leave you with some of the photos I took before leaving InSpiral, of just some of the many gorgeous meals they had on offer! Enjoy! πŸ™‚

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Raw nut and seed burgers.

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Gorgeous looking vegan quiche.

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Vegan shepherds pie.

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Vegan Lasagna.

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Nut roast with butternut squash & tahini.

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Close up of the signs for the lovely dishes!

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More examples of their beautiful raw crepes. (And on the next shelf down – roasted vegetable sandwiches)

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That day’s raw pizza – how beautiful does that look? I couldn’t resist getting a slice to take home with me! It made a wonderful dinner for the next day, and it meant I could bring a little bit of InSpiral home with me! (Speaking of which, I’ve written this post whilst munching on some of their kale chips! Me? Obsessed? Never!)

Have you ever been to InSpiral?

If yes, what’s your favourite thing to eat there?
If no, what would you like to try the most?

<3 Pixie x

 

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