Tauranga’s Only Vegetarian Cafe Closes Its Doors

260534_655789677781094_1941494704_nTHEY SAY ALL good things must come to an end, and that’s precisely what has happened to Tauranga’s only vegetarian & vegan cafe, Food Garden on Cameron Road, Greerton.

Come this Friday (August 2), owner Carol Garden with the help of her small but ever charming team will open their doors one last time.

But all is not lost. Carol plans to focus thereafter on their manufacturing brand, aptly named ‘Gourmet Vegan’ by Food Garden, providing frozen goodies soon to a retail store near you. The initial range hosts a Moroccan vegetable pie and sunflower & walnut sausages and rissoles which will be both vegan & gluten free, with more products to follow.

Established in 2011, The Food Garden became a regular stop for those both young and old (and even those of the four legged variety), many of whom would be greeted by name and an ever-present smile, before settling in to indulge in a selection of vegetarian magazines and daily papers, lounging on the large couch or partaking in some people-watching from the tables and chairs outside.

014I for one, will miss my rice milk chai lattes in a place with such a relaxing atmosphere and service that never disappoints, from Carol’s team of Ginnine, Gisella & Rebecca, and which is conveniently only a stone’s throw from my home. I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

026Carol has kindly agreed to share the recipe for the cafe’s immensely popular Raw Detox Slice with the readers of Doctor Feelgood. I’m demolishing my second helping of the day as we speak, and I have no doubt that you will not be disappointed!

Raw Detox Slice

1 cup almonds – soaked overnight
2 cups dates – soaked for 2 hours
2 cups long thread coconut
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup cocoa

Place almonds, water, cocoa & half of the dates into a food processor.
Blend til smooth, add coconut & blend briefly.
Press into a baking dish and smooth the top before placing in the fridge (covered) for 2 hours.
Lastly, blend the remaining dates and spread icing, topping with slivered almonds & chopped apricots.

To follow the updates of Food Garden’s new venture or to check out when Carol is hosting the next Vegetarian Society catch up in Tauranga, then head over to their Facebook page here. RACHEL WALKER

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