I recently learned that Bala's Bistro — a little African/American restaurant out by the airport — had a vegan menu! I finally got a chance to try it last week, and it was awesome. They have both African dishes and American dishes (and lots of meat), but they offer meatless options from both cuisines. There's a vegan chipotle burger and a vegan kimchi wrap, as well as vegan saka saka (braised cassava leaf) and vegan fataya (a vegetable hand pie).
But the Curry Rout Vegetable Stew was calling my name! I love anything with a coconut curry sauce.
This hearty stew has beets, sweet and white potatoes, carrots, and parsnips, and it's bursting with flavor. All the vegan items come with a side, and you can choose between three kinds of rice (African jollof rice, jasmine rice, or fried rice), plantains, or the veggie special of the day. I went with jasmine rice because it seemed like the best fit for the stew.
That was a tough choice though! It's hard for me to say no to plantains when they're on a menu. I'll definitely be back to try the saka saka with some plantains. You can even get the vegan burger with plantains instead of fries (always a win!).
The stew was delicious. The vegetables were perfectly cooked — soft but not mushy. And the coconut curry sauce was thick and creamy. They sent me home with enough for two meals, so I was excited to have the leftovers for lunch later in the weekend.
Bala's Bistro is located at 2160 East Raines Road.