You may have heard of Raw Nation Wholefoods – the supplier of handcut fruit and salads to all the major supermarkets – but its counterpart, Crudo Café, is the North-West’s little gem!
Located on the same lot as Raw Nation Wholefoods (meaning their produce is as fresh as it gets!), Crudo has been serving up healthy alternatives to your typical brunch options for almost two years.
“Everything’s made fresh on the day. That’s one of the bonuses of having the café attached to the warehouse. So out the back, they’re handcutting all the food and produce for Coles and Woolies and Foodland and, because there’s such a high turnover, we’ve got fresh produce all the time,” says Crudo’s Social Media Manager, Lauren Clark.
With a mission to make healthy, delicious food the easy option, Crudo has committed itself to use only fresh, quality Australian produce in its dishes.
We tried its menu out for ourselves and here’s what we thought:
Bad Boy Brekkie
A healthy take on the classic brunch meal, Big Brekkie, Bad Boy Brekkie is made up of two pieces of lightly toasted rye sourdough (smeared with some good ol’ smashed avo!), two poached eggs, grilled Adelaide Swiss mushrooms, grilled cubes of haloumi, wilted spinach, roasted tomatoes and strips of zucchini rosti. The rosti is soft and pillowy with delicate flavour complemented by everything else on the plate. The mushrooms aren’t overcooked and therefore give the dish an earthy dimension. Overall, a nice take on a classic!
The Old Italian Lady
We can never go past baked eggs on a brunch menu, and this time was no exception. The Old Italian Lady sees two eggs baked perfectly (with oooozy yolk) in a rich tomatoey sauce that had a slight kick to it from some mild chilli. Served with a few slices of toast, this dish radiates a rustic warmth all over.
Customisable with the choice of any three ingredients from the wide array of selections, we decided to go with baby spinach, red capsicum and mushroom. The omelette itself was well seasoned and not overdone and the three ingredients we chose gave the dish a wonderful myriad of flavours to work with.
Made up of chopped cos lettuce, corn, cherry tomatoes, bacon and Danish feta cheese, this is the perfect ‘simple’ salad. The bacon was done just right, not too crispy and added a nice, smoky flavour to the dish and the salad was dressed with a basic olive oil.
Crudo’s take on the famous Caesar Salad, includes not only cos lettuce, red onion, roasted chicken, boiled egg, and, of course, croutons, but also included the interesting addition of avocado. The chicken was cooked just enough and wasn’t chewy at all, the boiled egg was generously served, the croutons added a nice crunchy texture to the salad, while the avocado provided a slight creaminess. The aioli sauce that dressed this salad was perfect and didn’t overpower the other flavours at all.
This dish was basically a delicious salad served with crunchy, gluten-free corn chips throughout! The dish consisted of warm brown rice, corn, diced red onion, beans, cos lettuce and guacamole. The flavour was mild, with no one flavour prominent over the others – but that was the beauty of this dish! Topped with a chipotle sauce, this dish is no less than a healthy take on your everyday nachos!
Jamaican Jerk Chicken
Jerk style chicken served with avocado, baby spinach, capsicum, cucumber, cherry tomatoes and corn, this salad was slightly different from the others, with its Caribbean flavours evident throughout. Once again, the chicken was cooked well, with the lime mayo sauce tasting a little like peri peri!
The last of the (many) salads we tried, the Balsamic Beet is made up of beetroot (surprise, surprise!), sweet potato, fresh rocket, walnuts and feta cheese. Perhaps the most complex in flavour profile of the dishes we tried, the beetroot had a slight sweetness along with the sweet potato, while the feta provided a savoury note and the rocket added some bitterness. The walnuts added a crunchy texture to the dish while the balsamic vinaigrette gave a touch of sourness. The dish was overall very refreshing and all the flavours worked well together.
A special, the healthy AB was made from our choice of meat (we chose chicken), along with charcoal grilled zucchini, sweet potato and eggplant. The chicken bits were tender and soft and drizzled on top was tomato sauce and mustard which made the whole dish taste a little bit like a cheeseburger! The Healthy AB would be the perfect healthy hangover dish!
Crudo Café is located at Croydon Park and is open from 7am til 3pm Monday to Fridays.
Words by Geena Ho
WHERE: 336A South Rd, Croydon Park