How to have your cake and eat it too...sans guilt.

Why I’m hun­gry for a ve­gan “Big Mac.”

ELLE (Canada) - - #Storyboard - By Lisa Guimond

I haven’t had a Big Mac in 17 years. Be­fore I be­came a veg­e­tar­ian, it was my fast-food BFF. My go-to. My ev­ery­thing. At 11 years old, I could wolf down two of them with fries and feel no shame. I was young, life was beau­ti­ful and calo­ries didn’t count. But now that I’ve all but for­got­ten what it feels like to bite into a juicy burger, Los An­ge­les fast-food joint Doomie’s has set up shop in Toronto to give ve­g­ans and vege­tar­i­ans some­thing to chew on. The menu fea­tures the hall­marks of a greasy spoon (bar­be­cue pulled “pork,” fried mac ’n’ “cheese” balls), but all I re­ally care about is the ve­gan take on the Big Mac. The Mac Daddy, as Chef Doomie (he only goes by one name) calls it, is a tow­er­ing replica of Mickey D’s orig­i­nal ex­cept that it’s built with an­i­mal-prod­uct-free in­gre­di­ents. I’ve en­listed the help of a friend for the taste test—she has had a Big Mac re­cently, so her meat mem­ory is bet­ter than mine. The burger cer­tainly passes our vis­ual test—it looks just like its beefy pre­de­ces­sor, and you can even get it in a fast-food-style box. After a cou­ple of bites, we both agree that the spe­cial sauce is pretty on-point and the patty is hearty. Sure, we’ve prob­a­bly con­sumed about a mil­lion calo­ries, but we’ve de­cided to em­brace the chef’s out­look: “Life is short,” he says. “You have to do what makes you happy.”

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