MANILA, Philippines – There’s a plant-based version of almost everything nowadays – chicharon, inihaw na liempo, Pinoy barbecue, garlic pepper beef, fried chicken – you name it! However, it was the first time I heard of vegan shawarma rice, so I had to try Shirley’s Just Vegan’s plant-based version of the popular Middle Eastern dish.
The local business serves it just like in mainstream stalls – a plate of brightly-colored java rice, generous slices of “meat,” fresh veggies, and a yogurt sauce drizzled on top. The only difference is that it’s “beaf” used – a meat-free substitute made with textured vegetable protein and spices. It’s got a firm, solid chew (none of that mushy texture) and a subtle umami flavor. The “yogurt sauce” used is also a vegan mayo substitute, which adds a nice creaminess to the dish.
The rice is tasty, and the freshly-sliced onions, tomato, and cucumber add a zing of freshness. It’s a whole meal on its own, and a satisfying one at that! Also, this vegan dish got some impressed “this isn’t meat?” comments from my non-vegetarian friends.
Other ingredients include vegetable oil, turmeric, annatto paste, salt, pepper, and soy sauce. You can also opt for a spicy version using sriracha vegan mayo.
Shirley’s Just Vegan’s vegan shawarma rice costs P250 for a solo meal and P1,100 for a tray that’s good for 3-4 people. The hub is based in Kamagong Street, Makati City. You can place your orders via Facebook. – Rappler.com
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