Following hot on the heels of large corporations, Montreal's Lebanese chain restaurant will be adding plant-based options to its menu on Monday, August 3rd: Vegan shish taouk (which the company describes as "vegan kebab plate"), vegan pita wraps, and new vegan recipes for pita and garlic sauce.
While there are options, plant-based options don't make up a majority of Lebanese cuisine, with vegans usually being directed to falafel, lentil soups, fattoush salads with toasted bread, a handful of desserts, and mezze like tabbouleh, hummus and baba ghanoush when dining out. To date, vegan meat options for Levantine food in Montreal has been largely dominated by restaurants like Falafel St-Jacques, which opened a new location in Lachine last year.
Once next week rolls around, however, Boustan will be joining the ranks of restaurant making vegan concessions. Normally known for its huge spits of meat cooking throughout the day at any of its locations, the new vegan protein is made from shiitake mushrooms and marinated with spices before being cooked on the grill, the 'meat' will be served either as a plate or a pita wrap.
They'll also be rolling out a vegan garlic sauce made from canola oil, soy milk, fresh garlic and spices; some recipes for garlic sauce (or toum) can involve butter instead of neutral oils like canola.
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“We’ve been hard at work for the past 8 months, developing a high-quality vegan product that doesn’t compromise on taste, texture, and that can compete on the market,” says Emad Saad, President and CEO of Boustan's franchises.
The shift in the menu follows a massive expansion for Boustan, which now numbers at 26 locations both on and off the island and is continuing its push to franchise its company out even further.
The vegan kebab plate and vegan kebab pita will be available in all Boustan locations.