During our trip to France, we decided to stop by the local supermarket and pick up some items we could use for meals throughout the week – as we were self-catered. We came across a brand called Cereal Bio that makes the closest thing I could find to veggie burgers in the supermarket: galettes.
These galettes came in a few varieties, so we picked up a couple to try out. There was the boulghour de riz, legumes, et colombo; and the sarrasin & boulghour a l’emmental. Just in case you’ve let your French lessons go since school, that’s bulgar rice, vegetables, and lentils (although the translation is not 100% on that one), and buckwheat and bulgar with Emmental cheese. We also grabbed some puffy potato balls and baked beans to go with them.
We served them up with a slice of cheese on top to try and make them a bit more burger-like, and then dug in. I tried them without sauce or other accompaniments to try to get a real feel for what they actually tasted like – this was totally new territory as I’ve never seen anything like this in the UK!
First of all, the Emmental version, as you can see above. It was slightly salty with a texture on the inside like rice, no doubt due to the bulgur and buckwheat. I could not actually discern any cheese flavour – perhaps it was so mild that it just got swallowed up by the other tastes! With the slice of gouda on top it was much improved, as the flavour was quite bland. It was also quite bitty, although I would point out that it was not at all crumbly. Overall, it was quite filling – and though I’m sure it would get boring over time, it wasn’t a bad vegetarian option.
Next, on to the lentil burger, which you can see below. I’d like to note at this point that even baked beans taste differently in France! This one had both the flavour and the texture of a falafel, being quite salty and spicy at the same time. The lentils were included whole in the mixture, and there was quite a peppery taste to it. The falafel flavour was a little orangey too. It was again very filling, and this one was certainly more interesting than the other.
If you are a vegetarian staying in France or looking to try something new, I certainly recommend giving them a try. I’m not sure I could eat the Emmental version too often, but the falafel one was quite nice. I’d go for it every now and then but not too regularly, as it is very salty. Otherwise, it was enjoyable just to try something that was so totally new!
On the VegBurge scale, I give this…
Taste – 6/10
Price – 6/10
Rest of experience – 8/10