“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien

Monday, May 30, 2016

Vegan Treats at the Retreat

Yesterday we went to the wilds of High Halden (about 5 miles away!) to a Family Fun Day at a wonderful animal rescue centre called The Retreat. It was their first ever Fun Day and they had seriously not expected the huge crowds that they got.

On the downside this meant that there were tremendously long queues both for food and the loos! On the upside though, it meant they got way more donations than they were expecting, which is great!

The food they were serving looked and smelled great - vegan burritos with sweet potato, rice and beans, vegan burgers with all the trimmings, and vegan hot dogs at one area, and at the other area, sandwiches and wraps and fries etc., and a cake stall with some seriously delicious-looking cakes.

Again, all vegan. There was a sign up that explained their position.

Luckily for us we weren't all that hungry, so when we learned that there were only hot dogs left it wasn't really a blow to us, even though I would have liked to sample the burritos or burgers, However as we meandered round we came to an area with a mixture of stalls, some with random items for sale and some about veganism, organic cotton and the like, and then I came to the Animal Aid stall, staffed by two very nice people...

...who were selling all sorts of nice vegan treats for humans (and doggies - I bought our pooches a bag of heart-shaped peanut butter-cinnamon dog treats which they enjoyed).

I bought four interesting-looking items with the intent of sampling them at home. Here are my reviews!

From the top: The Nakd Ginger Bread bar. Gluten, wheat and dairy free. Consistency somewhat like playdough, a nice pleasant taste, but not very gingery. I liked it though, and so did Rosie, which counts for a lot in my book.

Secondly, The Nakd Bakewell Tart bar, like all Nakd bars, are pure raw fruit and nut bars, guaranteed GMO-free. This one also got the thumbs-up from Rosie and me. It tastes very like a Bakewell, with that crumb-y, cake-ish almond flavor. Definitely must have this one again.

Third was the  GoMaxGo Cleo's Peanut Butter cups. These look identical to the traditional Reese's white chocolate version, with the added bonus of tasting a whole lot better. Not only that but they're gluten free. The regular chocolate version is made using rice milk chocolate.

Lastly, and this was our favourite, the Thumbs Up bar, also by GoMaxGo. Imagine somebody crossed a Cadbury's Crunchie with a Butterfinger bar. This is what you would have. Crispy, crunchy honeycomb with the subtle slightly salty twang of peanut butter.  No trans fats, no hydrogenated oils, GM-free, dairy-free. Awesome.

If you want to buy these, you might just find them in the health foods section of your local supermarket, your local Holland & Barrett or independent health food store, or purchase them online from Amazon, or from  www.animalaidshop.org.uk.

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