It's an early morning in Cambridge and there's already a line forming outside of the vegan/vegetarian diner Veggie Galaxy. Since 2011, this beloved spot has been cranking out diner classics with a vegan or vegetarian twist.
A recent menu update has proven that this place isn't slowing down anytime soon.
With an aim to add some lighter and healthier food to their menu, Veggie Galaxy has added options with a definite increase in one particular food; avocado. They're already going through upwards of 50 every day as these new avocado offerings are quickly becoming fan favorites.
Here are reviews of some of these new dishes, all of which were awesome and the large portions kept us full for almost the entire day.
Avocado Eggs Benedict
This was hands down my favorite new item. Being someone who can't eat eggs and generally avoids dairy, there are usually slim pickings when it comes to savory breakfasts.
My dish, consisting of tofu eggs (conventional eggs available), sliced avocado, cherry tomatoes, and fresh herbs over a grilled house-made black pepper biscuit, gave me the chance to experience diner food not covered in powdered sugar and maple syrup. It was an amazing experience.
The tofu eggs were seasoned perfectly and added a great savory flavor to the dish while the house-made biscuit gave a great crunch and added spice. The avocado, however, was the star of the show. Adding a creaminess to the dish, it made the new plate feel rich without weighing me down.
Stuffed French Toast
Though not necessarily brand new to the menu, the Stuffed French Toast, made with vanilla vegan cream cheese and topped with caramelized banana butter, strawberry sauce, and real maple syrup, has had a recipe makeover.
The key difference is a switch to a thicker bread, which made the dish much more substantial. The acidity of the strawberry sauce cuts through the sweetness and makes the flavor more nuanced. The vanilla vegan cream cheese was a bonus considering I've given up cheese for Lent.
Make no mistake about this french toast, it is 100% not healthy and is purely diner fare. Anyone who thinks all vegan food is healthy is wrong, but any skeptic of vegan food being delicious needs to try this.
Fried Pickle Spears
These fried pickle spears, made with a cornmeal crust and served with a remoulade, tasted like every food you'd find at a carnival in one bite. After sampling the two breakfasts I was stuffed, but am so glad I made room for these. They were definitely unhealthy, but what food with the word fried in the name is?
The remoulade definitely pulled the spears out of the "straight from the carnival" flavor, adding spice and umami flavor that the fried batter sorely needed for contrast. The batter itself was crispy and the pickle cut through the greasy, bready flavor.
The spears themselves are huge, so I would suggest getting these in a group and splitting.
Made with a fried spiced chickpea patty, tahini dressing, lemony red cabbage, pickles, and hummus, this new burger at Veggie Galaxy gives you, as my photographer said, "a taste of the Middle East in a burger."
The tahini, combined with the hummus, had a nutty and somewhat smoky flavor. With the red cabbage and coleslaw on the side, the burger gained a fresh flavor that if excluded would have made it too bready.
There was also a nice crunch to the fried chickpea patty, which most veggie burgers offered at restaurants usually miss the mark on.
Some other plates that we didn't have a chance to try include their Avocado Toast, waffles, and the Chickpea "Tuna" Stuffed Avocado. You can see some of these offerings on their Instagram, which is almost as good as their food.
These new dishes show that even after six years in the business, Veggie Galaxy isn't afraid to try new things.
I highly recommend trying it out, though make sure you either go early when they open or later in the day to avoid inevitable crowds.