I always get a bit dubious with trying food that is made to mimic something else, but the least you can do is try. My first attempt in eating meat-free alternatives was at Vegfest in London. Temple of Seitan also known as Temple of Hackney is a place I pass often when shopping in the area. I always thought it was a fried chicken shop but a close inspection of the menu I realised every single thing was all vegan. The shop sign is simply a white lightbox and an elegant font used for their logo. Queues can often be seen formed in the outside of the shop. People sit outside the metal table and chairs chomping on massive burgers or getting their hand’s dirty dunking chicken pieces into sauces.
Ordering the 50/50 box consists of popcorn bites and fries from Temple of Hackney, the staff had to make a fresh batch. Receiving a numbered ticket whilst waiting for the food to be made. Presented in a sturdy cardboard box, I took the box outside and sat at outside sharing tables with strangers. There’s only two long tables outside and a sitting of four bar stools inside. Not so great when it’s cold or wet weather.
What is seitan?
It’s wheat gluten made from wheat. That can replace meat. Seitan can easily absorb flavour and seasoned correctly and you wouldn’t tell the difference between real meat.
Their vegan chicken is made of hydrated wheat gluten, seasoned and coated in batter. The texture is a bit rubberily and tastes like chicken meat. Fries, on the other hand, are a bit limp and warm turning cold situation.
The portion of 50/50 is plenty and great value for £7. I would happily eat this for a healthier meat free alternative to meat version.
Temple of Seitan
10 Morning Ln, London E9 6NA