Asha’s is going vegan for this year’s Manchester Food and Drink Festival.
Masterchef UK quarter-finalist and Asha’s executive chef Bobby Geeta has teamed up with Manchester head chef Ashwani Rangta to create a five course vegan menu, using locally sourced and in-season British produce such as heritage beetroot, butternut squash and parsnips to deliver a quirky and memorable event.
It will be available for two nights only as part of the festival’s fringe dining events.
Asha’s have also partnered up with Seedlip, the world’s first distilled non-alcoholic spirit, to offer a selection of five paired, non-alcoholic cocktails to complement Ashwani and Bobby’s vegan dishes.
Inspired by The Art of Distillation, a book written in 1651 detailing apothecaries’ distilled non-alcoholic herbal remedies, Seedlip has taken centuries-old techniques and reimagined them to meet modern tastes. If you like keeping a clear head, these will be right up your street.
Start your evening with a Seedlip Garden 108 and tonic served in a highball with a handful of peas, alongside a starter of pea and mint shorba (a delicious yoghurt based soup, served cold as a side) and crushed almond samosa. Garden 108 is a herbal, summery concoction with notes of fresh peas, hay, spearmint, rosemary and thyme – the perfect complement to the refreshing shorba and samosa combo.
Next up, a stunning heritage beetroot and parsnip shami kebab accompanied by black cabbage – it’s known as the new kale and has a pleasant, tangy and bitter taste and a sweet aftertaste – and Andhra chilli fig chutney. This dish will be accompanied by a Seedlip’s pear and parsnip soda. We’re looking forward to getting stuck into this pairing.
Next, a salad of seasonally-grown Achari heirloom baby tomatoes and a protein-packed chickpea dosa, served with lemon verbena chutney and paired with a Seedlip Garden Toddy – a non-alcoholic twist on the warming whiskey-based original.
Fourth on the list is a spelt and butternut squash curry, which comes with tandoori tofu, baby artichoke pakoras and home-salted slices of cucumber. Paired with a Seedlip Garden and elderflower tonic, which comes served in a highball with a cucumber ribbon, Asha’s chefs really have put together a veritable feast here.
Last, but certainly not least, there’s pudding.
Round off your evening with vegan fried chocolate momos (parcels stuffed with vegan chocolate) accompanied by passion fruit, tender coconut and nutrient-rich palm jaggery, a brilliantly healthy alternative to white sugar.
Finish off with a Seedlip Garden Booch, a mixture of Garden 108 and passion fruit-flavoured kombucha, a fermented tea with numerous health benefits.
This sounds like a dinner we really don’t want to miss. For anyone trying to live their best life, it’s a no-brainer. From inventive dishes to drinks, it ticks all of the boxes.