Make a beeline for these healthy hotspots in the capital to tuck into delicious guilt-free fare
Wild Food Café
Tucked away among the colourful nooks and crannies of Neal’s Yard, the Wild Food Café is a paradise for devotees of the raw diet. Boasting a relaxed vibe despite being one of the most visited food haunts in the area, its welcoming atmosphere is partly due to friendly staff who are enthusiastic to share how their dishes are created.
Customers lucky enough to snag a window seat can bask in the sunlight as they make a start on their ayurvedic super salad or finish off their last sweet potato wedge. When it comes to dessert, creativity has been kicked up a notch: chocolate-lovers will love the nut-free raw chocolate tart, although the lemon cheesecake and the raw ginger and rhubarb slice make for tough competition.
Wild Food Café, 1, 14 Neal’s Yard, London WC2H 9DP. wildfoodcafe.com
Nama – Artisan Raw Foods
An exponent of superior global cuisine, Notting Hill-based Nama Foods is the perfect place to tuck into a Thai coconut curry, Mexican bowl or an Italian walnut and courgette pizza, with a twist — reinvented using raw ingredients. With its minimalistic backdrop and cool aesthetic, the restaurant provides a tranquil environment for visitors who wish to make the most of the eclectic breakfast menu, rustic lunch options or desserts that will satisfy even the most demanding sweet tooth.
Nama has more than succeeded in its mission to provide a whole new range of food choices by swapping traditional cooking techniques, like boiling and grilling, with ‘below 42C’ methods, including blending and dehydrating. One particular treat to keep an eye out for is the ‘rawtella’ spread — Nama’s healthy twist on Nutella, made from cacao and hazelnut butter. Served on filling slices of raw almond and walnut bread, then topped with bananas, this early-morning delicacy will perk up even the weariest customer.
Nama, 110 Talbot Road, London W11 1JR. namafoods.com
While Tanya’s Café boasts some of the most artistically crafted delicacies in London — its intricate smoothie bowls and vibrant cheesecakes are creating a stir among foodie Instagrammers — its trademark is a range of alcoholic tipples.
Europe’s first ‘superfood cocktail bar’ offers a choice of four uniquely crafted drinks centred around plant-based and gluten-free alcohol. Infused and garnished with a plethora of colourful raw ingredients, adding a fruity splash of flavour, the gin-based tang of the Totally Tanya and the citrus-rum blend of Island Time will cultivate a warm buzz in curious foodies looking to indulge in a stronger type of delicacy. Don’t have a sweet tooth? Pick a beverage from the organic beer and wine list — completely plant based, with no added sulphites, these righteous drinks are sure to make the hangover easier to bear. We hope.
Tanya’s Café, Myhotel, 35 Ixworth Place, London SW3 3QX. tanyascafe.com
The recipe: raw cacao and carob sandwich cookies
“Now, these are really special,” says Olivia, author of Livia’s Kitchen, a book crammed with tasty gluten- and dairy-free recipes that will satisfy even the sweetest tooth. “The superfood powders in this recipe make the cookies not only rich and full of flavour, but wonderfully nourishing, too.” What’s more, they’re pretty filling, so are the perfect afternoon snack to keep you going without that typical mid-afternoon energy slump. What more could you want?
Ingredients (makes 14 cookies)
Cashew cream filling
100g smooth cashew butter
½tbsp vanilla powder
1tbsp coconut palm sugar
150g ground almonds
100ml date syrup
25g melted raw coconut oil
2tbsp carob powder
2tbsp cacao powder
½tbsp vanilla powder
1tbsp coconut sugar
To make the cashew cream filling Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. To make the cookies Using your hands, blend all ingredients together in mixing bowl until thoroughly combined and sticky. Using your hands, roll out the mixture into small [size of a mug base], thin circles. Using a knife, spread cashew cream on half of the cookies, then place the remaining cookies on top to form sandwiches.
This recipe was extracted from Livia’s Kitchen, by Olivia Wollenberg. RRP: £20 (Ebury Press). Photography: Tara Fisher