Restaurant Review: Veganising ‘Kream’

by Anda Mtshemla

Walking though the restaurant-lined aisle of Mall of Africa’s outdoor court area, a row of bold, black and white sculptured chairs with mask-like faces moulded into their backs stopped mine and my sister’s hungry hearts as we stepped in. Completely distracted by the hip decor, we were blissfully unaware that our vegan selves, were walking into a restaurant called called Kream with a “K.”

We were welcomed by a warm hostess who managed to seat us almost immediately despite the buzzing restaurant being near capacity. We were then offered a selection of fresh breads to choose from, served with a quartet of spreads which included a biltong butter, garlic butter and olive tapenade. We enjoyed our ciabatta slices dry.


Fresh slices of ciabatta with butter, biltong butter, garlic butter and olive tapanede

A quick look through the menu and we quickly realise this stylish, modern atmosphere is matched by equally stylish and modern cuisine; boasting dishes like Foie Gras and Gourmet Sushi as well as an established wine list and specialised drinks menu with a wide variety of cocktails.

After getting to know the menu, we were approached by yet another host, who ran us through that Saturday’s Chef’s Specials, which included a chargrilled steak and other meats, which of course weren’t dishes that suited our taste. Upon asking about what he would recommend for vegans, the host mentioned an array of salads as well as a thai curry which wasn’t on the menu, but could be made as per our request.

After a few minutes, my lunch date and I decided on a poached pear and walnut salad, which we veganised by requesting that they leave out the goat’s cheese; and created a little sushi platter for ourselves from their selection of vegetable sushi rolls. While I’m not big on salad, the salad we ordered was so fresh, luscious and perfectly dressed, my sister and I considered sending compliments to the chef.


Port-poached pear and Walnut Salad alongside vegetable sushi rolls

While we did ask that our sushi be made with no mayonnaise my sister noticed some oozing out the sides of the fashion sandwiches we ordered. We made our waiter aware, three members of staff came to apologise for the mix up and brand new, mayonnaise-less fashion sandwiches were brought to our table.

We spent a cool R400 (including tip) which I felt was reasonable, considering the fact that this is a fancy-pants kind of spot. While there weren’t a bunch of vegan options on the menu, Kream’s willingness to cater for us, their exceptional service as well as the modern decor and trendy atmosphere, means this restaurant will definitely be getting another visit from me.





The 3-Ingredient Apple Pie Pockets

by Anda Mtshemla

One of my favourite things about grocery shopping is finding accidentally vegan items. My latest “Not-Made-For-Vegans-But-Perfectly-Suitable-For-Them-To-Eat” discovery is ready-made puff pastry. The stuff famous for being packed with a tonne of butter to produce its flaky texture? Yup, vegan.

While most store-bought variations are vegan, there are some brands that contain animal products so make sure you read the ingredient list.

For this recipe, I’ve used this amazing accidentally vegan find as a shortcut to one of my favourite desserts at the moment and yes, you only need three things!

You will need:

1 cup applesauce

1 roll puff pastry (400g)

splash of soy milk (to be used as egg wash)


Pre-heat oven to 180°C

Roll and smooth out the puff pastry sheet

Cut the pastry sheet into equal sized rectangles (a sheet this size gets you about 12 rectangles)

Spoon the applesauce into the centre of half of the rectangles, leaving room around the edges

Place the empty pastry rectangles on top of the applesauce filled ones, gently pressing down the edges of each one

Secure the edges of each pie pocket by gently pressing them down with a fork

Lightly score each of the pie pockets and brush generously with soy milk

Place in the pre-heated oven to bake for 12-15mins

Serve warm and enjoy on its own or with a serving of vegan ice cream

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3-Ingredient vegan apple pie pocket

The Hot Cross Cinnamon Swirls

by Anda Mtshemla

With my first Easter as a vegan around the corner, I wanted to create a recipe with the feel of any other Easter, while minimising time in the kitchen and maximising on the long weekend.

While I was never a fan of hot cross buns as a non-vegan, there’s just something about things that you can’t have. So I put my own vegan twist (or swirl) on the classic Easter treat, which combines the ease of a cinnamon roll, using a simple hack, and the unique flavour of a traditional hot cross bun!

You will need:

1kg bread dough (get this fresh from your local grocer)

3 tablespoons coconut oil

2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon nutmeg

1/2 tablespoon crushed cloves

1/2 cup raisins

1/2 cup sugar

for the “cream cheese” glaze

4 tablespoons icing sugar

1 tsp water

1 tsp lemon juice

pinch of salt


Pre-heat the oven to 180°C

Halve the dough to make it more manageable

Work the raisins into both sections of the dough

Roll out the dough to about 1-2cm thickness

Cut off the sides to make sure the dough is rectangular in shape

Combine coconut oil, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves in a separate bowl

Spread this mixture evenly onto the sheet of dough then roll the dough into a tight log

Slice the log horizontally into 3-5cm swirls

Pack the swirls into a greased baking pan of your choice, leaving space around the edges

Bake for 20-25 minutes

while the cinnamon swirls bake…

Combine the icing sugar, water, lemon juice and salt in a bowl until the mixture reaches a thick but pourable consistency

Once the swirls have baked, drizzle the cream cheese glaze over them and serve warm

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Vegan Hot Cross Cinnamon Swirls crossed with a “cream cheese” glaze

This article was featured in Joburg Style. Read it here.

The 3-Ingredient Vegan McFlurry

by Anda Mtshemla

Believe it or not, “Milk’s Favourite Cookie” contains no milk. Or eggs. Or butter. Or any animal products at all, in fact, making them vegan-friendly. Many people’s favourite Oreo recipe, McDonald’s innovative take on famed “cookies ‘n cream” ice cream, is not vegan. But we can fix that.

PREP TIME: Overnight  COOK TIME: 5mins  MAKES: 2 servings

You will need:

4 frozen bananas

1 tsp vanilla essence

6 Oreos, crushed


Place frozen bananas in blender and blend until smooth and creamy

Add vanilla essence and blend until combined

Add crushed Oreos and pulse until combined

Transfer to mug or bowl and serve

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Yup. Just bananas.

NOTE: Keep in mind that this recipe should be enjoyed immediately as the “ice cream” will lose its creamy texture as the bananas thaw