This blog is a celebration of the wonderful world of vegan cooking. Enjoy!

* The title of this blog refutes the dangerous idea that veganism is a weight-loss diet and that all vegans are skinny. Conversely, being a-not-so-skinny-vegan is also not the same as being overweight or unhealthy. All food intake must be part of a balanced lifestyle.

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Purple Carrot - Bellingen, NSW, Australia

If you ever find yourself on the north coast of New South Wales (and many travellers do as they make their way from Brisbane to Sydney or vice versa) I would highly recommend the short detour from the highway to the town of Bellingen.

The main street of Bellingen.
This tiny town of not even 3000 people seems to have achieved cult status with the cafe dwellers of the nearby bigger towns of Coffs Harbour and Nambucca Heads. And it's not hard to see why. The quiet little town is set against the beautiful peaks of the Dorrigo National Park and the main street proudly displays some beautifully preserved buildings full of food, fashion and craft stores that I've not seen the equal of in many places.

The creek in nearby Promised Land.
I had visited Bellingen on school trips when I was much, much younger but had not been there for many years. On our recent visit to Australia my lovely cousin and her, just as lovely, husband took us for a drive to Bellingen for lunch. We ate at a great, vegan-friendly cafe called The Purple Carrot.

The Purple Carrot
Bellingen, NSW

The cafe doesn't have a website (something I consider a sin these days) and there is nothing vegan on the menu. So why am I reviewing this cafe? Because they were super happy to accommodate vegans and they produced the most delicious quinoa salad with roasted macadamia nuts, beets, carrot and pumpkin/squash. The dish originally had cheese in it (goat's cheese, I think) but the dish really didn't need it and it was really filling and delicious.

The beet-pumpkin-macadamia nut quinoa salad was delicious (sans cheese).
There were lots of vegetarian options on the menu (Geoff really enjoyed his although he can't actually remember what he ate!), the coffee was great (soya milk available, of course) and the service was lovely. It was also just an absolute pleasure to sit out in the sun and enjoy a delicious lunch with great company.

If you have it then take the time to visit Bellingen and this yummy cafe!

1 comment:

  1. I was just in Bellingen and absolutely fell in love with the town. We tried to go to the Purple Carrot but it was closed at the time. We're only in Australia until December, but I'm hoping to sneak in another trip up there before we leave so I'll make sure to hit it while it's open. :)