All Day Breakfast with Caramelized Banana Pancakes
When we went to Cosmic Treats in Toronto we really weren’t expecting to get anything other than desserts, but since we were feeling peckish (as Eian would say) one of the meals on the menu caught our eye. Even though it was 11pm, we were drawn to the All Day Breakfast option. It came with your choice of caramelized banana chocolate chip pancakes, blueberry oatmeal pancakes, or cornmeal waffles, with tofu scramble, and hash browns.
We decided on the caramelized banana chocolate chip pancakes, because we are decadence fiends… plus this flavour immediately made us think of one of our favourite ice creams ever by So Delicious; Banana Flambe! The tofu scramble also caught our attention since Eian has been wanting to try it for literally ever! And as you guys may or may not know, I am potato obsessed, or maybe I’m just a potato, I haven’t really figured that out yet. Either way, our cravings led us to a beautiful, surprise dining experience. It actually ended up being one of our favorite meals we had in Toronto!
It turns out, if you caramelize just about anything, it tastes beautiful. I discovered this when I first tasted the caramelized banana chocolate chip pancakes from Cosmic Treats. These taste like heaven. Everyone likes chocolate chip pancakes, that’s nothing new, but when combined with caramelized banana, they’re exponentially more delicious. The banana was mixed into the pancakes just like the chocolate chips were, but the chunks of banana were much bigger, and squishier! The way all the flavours combined reminded me of So Delicious Banana Flambe ice cream! They tasted more like a dessert than a breakfast, but somehow weren’t overly sweet. I don’t know how you can shove this much decadence into a pancake and not have it come out overly sweet, but somehow they managed. We also shared these, so I think that helped limit the sweetness!
The tofu scramble had so much delicious flavour as well! I’ve read some reviews saying the tofu scramble here has almost NO flavour. I’m convinced they actually listened to the feedback and reworked the recipe, because it actually had so much depth of flavour! All the flavours blended together beautifully, with no dominant, or offensive taste to be found. The boyfriend ate the tofu scramble so I’m relying on his description of it! He says it worked really well with the rest of the plate because even though it was really flavourful, it was also subtle and smooth, allowing it to blend with the other items. It also had chunks of red peppers, spinach, and tomatoes which added a lot of flavour!
So I have REALLY high standards when it comes to potatoes. Potatoes are probably my favourite food, and I’m used to making my own, the exact (superior) way I like them. Safe to say, my expectations for these hash browns weren’t very high, but I was blown away by the flavour of these!! I’ve never had a potato quite like this. The flavour was really warm, subtle and savoury. I feel like there was nutmeg or maybe even cumin involved. They definitely didn’t just use the typical spices I put on potatoes (onion, garlic, salt, pepper, paprika), they were way more than that! I found the flavour to be somewhat similar to the tofu scramble in terms of the spices used. This was nice because everything on the plate went together really well. Moral of the story, I would sell my soul for the spice combo on these things!
Probably the softest pancakes ever. I feel like this alone does not do these pancakes justice, but it’s true, they were SO soft! They were about half an inch thick, the outside was dark golden brown, and they were so fluffy and soft! They were the kind of pancakes that are easy to cut with just the side of a fork; so not chewy at all, more like a cake texture!
The chocolate chips and caramelized bananas added nice contrast to the texture. The chocolate was melty and warm, and the bananas were squishy and sugary. All around, these pancakes tasted and felt like a dessert, especially when topped with maple syrup.
Even though I didn’t like the tofu scramble on account of my picky texture taste buds, I was so impressed with the texture of it! It looked just like scrambled eggs but much more colourful and veggie laden. I can’t say I have experience with scrambled eggs, but I swear these looked fluffier than the real deal! Something my boyfriend really liked about the texture of these was how it was the perfect mix of soft & tender and crispy. Some parts of the tofu scramble were golden brown and crispy, and other parts were tender and bright. It seems like they let one side of the scramble brown and crisp, then mixed it all, making for so many different textures in one dish. The chunks of red pepper and spinach were a nice touch too!
I loved the texture of these hash browns!! They were hands down, my favourite part of this meal! It seemed like they used mini potatoes because they were cut into large chunky pieces, with each piece being made of almost half a potato. They also had the skins on, which is exactly how I like them! I expected them to be really tiny cubes – potentially without skin – since that’s usually what form hash browns come in, but I was much happier with this shape. The large chunks allowed the texture inside to stay nice, soft, and potato-y. Classy texture, 10/10.
I also loved the outside, skin texture of the hash browns. It was kind of crumbly, almost like it had a bread-y coating on it. I think I know how they achieved this texture since I use this method on my own potatoes. What I do to get a crumbly, coated texture is pre cook the potatoes (by boiling them) until they’re really soft and tender – almost falling apart. Then let them cool a bit, and toss them in a bowl on their own or with the spices until the outsides start to get mushy and the chunks start to lose their shape a bit – but not too much.
When baked, this mushy texture on the outside turns into a crispy, almost breaded texture. The hash browns here definitely had that texture going on and it was so beautifully well done. On top of that, the inside texture was really soft and potato-y!! The ideal form of potato right there!
This plate was cute af!! It was actually the first thing we thought when the waitress brought our food out; look how cute this plate is?! Each item was separated into its own little ⅓ section on the square plate. Everything was arranged around a cute metal syrup pitcher. I think the mini syrup pitcher was my favourite part of the presentation; it was so retro and classy. Although each item was separated, the plate still looked – and felt – really full. They somehow managed this without the foods mixing. I hate when foods mix, because I’m a picky weirdo… especially about textures. So thank you Cosmic Treats for presenting these foods so beautifully, and in a way that allowed me to avoid the texture of the tofu scramble.
Something I really liked about the presentation of this plate was how beige it was. As you know, I love beige foods. Potatoes, bread, give me all of the carbs please. They combined some of the best beige foods and added a pop of colour in the form of tofu scramble. Overall, this is a meal combo I’ve never had a chance to try, it was basically like a traditional big breakfast, but instead of the murder eggs and meat, it was super carb focused! I was really happy I got to indulge in a veganized, carb-heavy version of this classic meal!
I think this plate was health? To our standards maybe? It didn’t feel super greasy like some restaurant meals do, it felt more like homestyle cooking! And I think that’s actually the theme they’re going for judging by the rest of their menu items (which included things like lasagna, chickn’ caesar wraps, and spaghetti & meatballs). It was definitely a nice and satisfying food break after visiting the most greasy, indulgent restaurant ever, Apiecalypse Now! earlier that day.
We also felt very satisfied after eating this meal, it didn’t leave us feeling hungry 20 minutes later, or uncomfortably full like some take out food is guilty of. I feel like most of the foods on this spread were real whole foods (although jazzed up a bit with some oil I’m sure) which made it seem like one of the healthier options available to us at the time.
Either way, whether this meal was ‘healthy’ or not, it made us feel really good, emotionally and physically. If there’s one thing I hate, it’s going to a restaurant, eating really delicious – but decadent – food, then being punished for it by your body later with intense and painful gas. Thank you Cosmic Treats for not inducing this experience for us.
The prices of the food menu items at Cosmic Treats ranged from $4 – $15. The All Day Breakfast was one of the main dishes, so it was on the more expensive side, at $14. Although it’s one of the most expensive items on the menu, we still think the prices here are really fair. The main dish we got was big enough for us both to share, so the servings are very generous.
The food itself is much higher quality than fast food restaurants. It has a homestyle feel to it, and you can tell the ingredients are fresh, whole foods! On top of this, you get 3 different dishes in one meal, so it is extra prep work. For what you get at Cosmic Treats in terms of serving size, food quality and diversity, the prices are really awesome! Where else can you get a vegan all day breakfast for under $20… that feeds two people?!