Ella and her husband own two delis - one is a smaller one in Seymour Place and the other a two floor affair in Weighhouse Street, just behind Oxford Street. I went to the latter, and luckily found a seat straight away - I'd heard there could be queues and so was very happy that it wasn't the case during my visit. It's possible that the horrible and gloomy London weather might have had something to do with it... Just maybe! Even without a queue though the place was still very full, but the staff seemed completely on top of everything and were very helpful to boot.
The idea for the menu is simple: there's a counter full of lovely different little dishes from which you can choose four to make up your own "MaE bowl". As well as the things on the counter, there are also two warm dishes served with rice which you can choose as a part of your four, which I quite liked. The whole bowl is only £9.50 which I thought was pretty reasonable as you do get quite a lot for your money (I couldn't even finish my dish!).
Aside from the main dish, I do have to admit that the rest of the products were unfortunately quite expensive. I had a smoothie (albeit a generous portion and very tasty) which was £6.50 and cold pressed juices or smoothies were around the same price mark. So if you're on a budget, you can still go here, but maybe leave the juices for another time and stick with tap water - it'll still be a yummy experience, I promise!
For my bowl, I went with both of the hot dishes which on Sunday were a veggie green curry and spicy beans (not sure if these change daily?) with rice as well as roasted sweet potato chunks with tahini and mushed avocado. IT WAS SO GOOD! My favourites were definitely the spiced beans and the sweet potato chunks - I'm seriously tempted to go back and just have a double portion of both... I think I'll resist the urge for a repeat order though as there are still so many different things I'd like to try, such as the sun dried tomato falafel and the pea & avocado hummus - yum!
Overall I had a really great experience in MaE Deli, and I would recommend it to anyone regardless of whether they're veggies or not - I think Ella's food really showcases how plant based food really doesn't mean "rabbit food" or whatever other phrases are generally thrown around! I also did a bit of reading on her website, and was very pleased to find out that she pays the London living wage to all of her employees which I think is really great and commendable, and definitely yet another reason to support her little delis!
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