You can call Spain the Land of Meat Lovers (think jamón) and you’re right about that. But definitely, it is not without its share of food joints that cater to vegetarians and vegans. From what I see around and online, the current trend veers towards healthy living. This is apparent in the good number of restaurants and fast food establishments that offer veggie dishes to meet the needs of the health-conscious Madrileños.
Craving for Burger
I am a burger guy. Serve me quick a warm burger anytime, and I would devour it just as easily. And it would not hurt a bit if it is created and cooked in a healthy way. In fact, I love it more if it was vegan. It is why I was beyond happy to have chanced upon Sanissimo, at Calle de San Vicente Ferrer in Tribunal.
Scanning Sanissimo’s menu board by its entrance, I see that it boasts of great options: veggie burgers, bagel, and wrap, and healthy juices and smoothies. If offers heavenly desserts to indulge in such as cookies and cakes – perfect to cap the meal and keep any customer satiated for the rest of the day.
Sanissimo’s glass counter display with its many vegan and vegetarian goodies
Who say veggie foods are bland and boring? Not if it is done right – and Sanissimo makes sure of it. According to the restaurant’s website, “Saníssimo is a young, dynamic company committed to offering safe and healthy food with dedication…” I can say that not only do they serve “safe and healthy food” but they churn out ones with delectable flavors as well.
I went for Terra Nostra, Sanissimo’s burger with patties made of lentils, a grain legume that’s basically carbohydrates, starch to be specific. The good thing about lentil is that it’s healthy. Apart from being protein-rich, it full of dietary fibers. Hence, it takes more time to digest (a boon to those with blood sugar levels that shoots up whenever simple carbo is consumed). Just perfect for me!
My food so divine in the form of Terra Nostra, one of Sanissimo’s four veggie burger offerings. This one’s made of lentil patties. I like that it’s filled with tomatoes, a heap of spinach, and the most delectable veggie dressing. A good portion of steamed broccoli as side dish makes it more healthful. With a refreshing Bavaria lemon drink that washed everything down, it’s such a complete healthful dish option at only 8.95 euro. Such a steal, right?
I chose Terra Nostra mainly because I crave for garbanzo-based food big time. Why wouldn’t I, after all those years of eating felafel and humous in Tel Aviv? After a good bite on my burger, I swore I wished I had a bigger sandwich to consume. Of course, it didn’t taste like beef, but heck, it was just as juicy and tasty as the real thing. Overall, it was a yummy treat.
I was served enthusiastically by its courteous “senora de sanissimo.” She tried to speak in English upon seeing how I struggled with my Spanish, groping hopelessly for the right words as I ordered. I got express permission from her to use this photo, by the way.
And so, I queried if indeed, the patty was made of lentils. I must have scared her off because she was quite frantic when she asked if I had any problem at all with lentils or chickpeas. I assured her that there’s nothing to worry about, and that I was just gathering facts for my blog. Its website advises customers to disclose any allergy or adverse reaction to a particular ingredient. Such information will help the staff in making proper adjustments and recommendations regarding orders.
Apart from Terra Nostra, Sanissimo has three other burger offerings: Red Dragon and Green Peace, both patties of which are made of Chickpeas or Garbanzos, and the soy-based Gossip Girl burger. There are many other delicious and healthy meal items to choose from, like bagels, wraps, salads, cakes, and pies. You may order online via its website.
Location / Dining Area
Sanissimo is cozy and makes you feel quickly at ease. The place’s not overly decorated, no serious frills, and just a few frames here and there that feature signs and sayings (about life and health). Accentuating the tables are cute lamps, which i don’t know if they’re functional or not. I wish they could add a few tables more (currently, there are three) to accommodate the anticipated influx of customers during peak hours, albeit doing so might be quite impossible since the area is small.
Simply put, vegetarian is the way to go. I’ve done this in Manila for a time, and happy that I was at my lightest and healthiest then. But this time, it’s one herculean goal. As it is, I am now “living the dream in Madrid”, which meant having acquired the taste for these fine meats, and my current food pleasures – jamon, calamares, and albondigas. Even so, for the sake of my health, I’ll make sure to go vegan once in a while, and drop by at Sanissimo and enjoy the healthy benefits that its food offers.
Location: Calle San Vicente Ferrer, 28, Tribunal, Madrid
How to go: Near Tribunal Station and Autobus Station of 149, 40