The deli, owned by Megan Tucker, will pop up on a monthly basis, offering plant-based versions of traditional Jewish dishes with inspirations taken from Israeli and Mediterranean cuisine. The menu will feature White Carrot Whitefish Salad, Mushroom Pastrami Sandwiches, Carrot Lox Bagels, and holiday favorites like Challah bread, Rugelach pastries, and Potatoe Latkes. Tucker also created two dishes to celebrate the city of LA: Corned Beet Reuben Tacos, and Matzoh Ramen which uniquely combines classic Matzoh Ball Soup and Japanese ramen.
Mort & Betty’s also has an animal rights mission. Tucker hopes to open a farm animal sanctuary, and so five percent of the pop-up’s profits will help fund this. She plans to raise $1 million, which will enable her to buy out a dairy farm and adopt the cows housed there.
In the meantime, Tucker has high hopes for her pop-up deli. She intends to bring Mort & Betty’s to more cities across the U.S., and is interested in collaborating with other chefs, maybe even partaking in a vegan latke “bake-off” with the former cooking show host, best-selling vegan cookbook author, and plant-based restauranteur Isa Chandra Moskowitz.
A VERY VEGAN LA-LA LAND
It is apt that Tucker’s deli is hitting Los Angeles as its first port of call: the city was named the “Most Vegan-Friendly City” in the U.S. by animal rights group PETA, and crowned the title by vegan musician and LA restaurateur, Moby.
Los Angeles is home to a plethora of vegan restaurants including the award-winning celebrity favorite, Crossroads, helmed by chef Tal Ronnen; popular Mexican-inspired cuisine at Gracias Madre; modern classics at Sage Vegan Bistro; vegan sushi at Shojin; and the Grand Central Market favorite, Ramen Hood.
However, making it the ideal home for Mort & Betty’s, the city is perhaps best known for its vegan food trucks and pop-ups. With offerings from Cena Vegan, Plant Food for People, Senoreata, and the Word of Mouth truck, there’s vegan food available seven nights a week in almost every neighborhood.
Furthermore, in line with Mort & Betty’s celebration of Jewish cuisine, LA is known for embracing different cultures. Food entrepreneurs have created a space centered around serving vegan Latino cuisine inspired by their heritage, sparking a grassroots movement that makes plant-based food more accessible.
Image credit: Mort & Betty’s
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