Undeniably, Cape Town (a.k.a. the Mother City) has an abundance of beautiful natural attractions to keep residents, holiday makers and tourists coming back for more. Aside from boasting some of the world’s best beaches, waters and nature reserves, this harbour city caters to energetic outdoor enthusiasts. Hiking, biking, walking and surfing seem to be daily priorities.
I did nothing of the sort during my recent 7-day visit.
I’d just packed up our home abroad and moved to South Africa with two kids and three animal-companions in tow. I simply wanted to snuggle into comfy, deep couches, quietly sea gaze at times, and mostly enjoy rambling conversations with my mother, daughters and other like minded folk.
I needed comfort. I wanted peace. I found both in Bella Vegan.
Belle Vegan, in Muizenberg, is owned and run by Jen Tyler, a mother of five. She quips this is why her breakfast and lunchtime portions are so generous, years of feeding so many children. She’s vibrant, kind, and although she runs the kitchen, she’s just as eager to meet her patrons. Jen finds her little cafe full of happy, satisfied people enjoying the fresh juices, favourite meals and freshly baked sweet treats.
We enthused over every slurp, bite, and guzzle. On all three visits!
Jen’s idea is to delight the cafe’s diverse clientele by offering all-time classic meals, for instance hearty pies, plump wraps, tasty hot pots and smoky BLT sandwiches. All 100% vegan. She believes it’s about giving people what they know and love, but with the peace and compassion only vegan meals can deliver.
Pets are welcome, and plenty of time was spent “oohing and ahhing” over a sweet puppy called Laila, as well as our dogs, Max & Trix. For quieter, introspective moments, Belle Vegan offers plenty of reading material, a books-for-resale stand, a charity-driven knitting basket as well as screening daily documentary, before the lunchtime buzz.
Follow Bella Vegan’s quick daily posts on Facebook or, better yet, get yourself and friends over to 42 Palmer Road, Muizenberg, Cape Town.
I’ve included one of Jen’s blog post recipes. – Motherly love at its best! (I found using half the sugar and double the orange juice works well)
Apple and Cinnamon Muffins
1 x Cup Polenta (Mealie Meal)
1 x Cup Oats
1 x Cup Wholewheat or Brown Bread Flour
3 x Tbsp Baking Powder
2 x Heap Tbsp Cinnamon Powder
1 x Tbsp Nutmeg
1/2 x Tbsp Salt
3 x Apples diced ( I keep the skins on)
1 x Cup Raisins
1 x Cup Sugar ( optional…the amount is negotiable)
1 x Cup chopped walnuts
1 x Cup Orange Juice
1/2 x Cup Sunflower Oil
- Combine dry ingredients well.
- Lightly whisk up the wet ingredients.
- Blend the mixes with a wooden spoon.
- Add more orange juice if the mixture seems too dry.
- You should be able to push it off the spoon easily with your finger.
- Spoon into prepared muffin tin
- Bake at 180°C (350°F) until the centres are springy! (around 15 – 20 minutes
- Serve hot with your favourite cuppa!