Christmas is always a great time for gluttons like myself!
However, to prepare myself for the inevitable food onslaught, I undertook some “training”:
A “Tony Adams” at Piebury Corner:
A deep filed pie consisting of crisp pastry and tender meat, topped with a rich, smooth gravy and sitting on a pile of creamy mash. Beautiful!
A “crazy lamb jalfrezzi burger” at Baba G’s:
Tender spiced lamb in a soft bun, smothered with riatha and an apple and pear chutney. Innovative, but not quite as good as a traditional jalfrezi from Dishoom.
A “Louisiana Rib” from Pure:
Sounded awesome, tasted very one dimensional. The distinct lack of smokiness in the pulled pork was a killer.
Chicken from Assenheim 56:
Think Nandos, but SO MUCH BETTER (blasphemy!). I have no idea what is in the “green” sauce (I’m guessing a lot of coriander!) but ask for extra sauce! I would also suggest getting the salad, not the rice (otherwise risk falling asleep at your desk…..)
Juice from Joe and the Juice:
Made fresh and reasonably priced. Only complaint is that they add too much apple to the juices!
More dim sum at the Lotus (I went three weekends in a row….)
Diwali treats from Pooja:
A colleague brought these in for Diwali. I ended up eating a box all by myself….and then went to the shop to buy some for later….
(I recommend the chocolate burfi. And the besan patisa. Maybe get some of the carrot halwa as a side snack too).
Hot pot at Chilli Cool:
All you can eat hotpot for under £20 a head. Sure, the quality of the meat is average, but the atmosphere here is awesome (it reminds me of the hustle and bustle of China!). It is also a great place to practise your Mandarin.
Crystallised stem ginger curd from M&S:
If you like lemon curd, you will LOVE this! It goes well with toast and is wonderful as a cake filling. I, however, eat it direct from the jar (I have no shame….)
Like eating a Christmas Pudding. Except it is healthy and vegan! Perfect for a post workout snack!
Carbonara pizza at the Yard:
Weird? Yeah. Ate it all? Of course! Would I order it again? No.
Dinner at Aryana’s:
One of my best friends invited me over for dinner. And what a dinner it was! Baked sweet potatoes, home-made vegan “meatballs”, fresh hummus topped with SAK’s special harissa paste (it came all the way from Tunisia!) and a delightful lemon posset to finish, Aryana, when’s the next one?
Vegan banana bread at CakesnTreats:
Sweet, creamy banana mixed with crunchy walnuts and smothered in chocolate. Decent, but I think mine is better!
Chicken and all the side dishes from Chicken Shop:
Without a doubt the best chicken in London. Smokey skin, moist meat, BIG (think American) portions. The sauces aren’t quite as good as Assenheims, but the Smokey Sauce gives Assenheims a good run for its money! If you like Nandos, you will become addicted to Chicken Shop!
Breakfast at Duck and Waffle:
For my birthday, a couple of friends treated me to a breakfast at the infamous Duck and Waffle. Usually, I only end up at the end of a night out (it is open 24 hours!), but this time, I wanted to try out the breakfast menu whilst taking in the sunrise!
Despite getting there for 7am, it was already packed! Luckily for us (and my stomach), we had reserved a table (highly recommended).
I ended up going for the “Steak Sandwich” (ox cheek benedict, slow cooked hen’s eggs, hollandaise and sriracha) and the bananas brûlée (waffles, home-made nutella, peanut butter and vanilla ice cream).
It has been blogged to death, but there is a reason for this! The addition of sriracha to the hollandaise (the best in London) helps cut through the richness of the ox cheek and that egg…..just look at it!! The waffles weren’t too bad either!
Chocolates from Paul A Young:
If you love chocolate, you have to visit one of Paul’s stores. Cigar leaf caramel, bread and marmelade, salt caramel and kalamansi were just a few of the flavors I tasted! All were very unique, but incredibly delicious. The cigar leaf, in particular, was my pick of the bunch due to the complex taste and the audacity for Paul to even consider it as a flavor!
I also tried a “townie” from Paul A Young:
Crisp, buttery pastry enveloping a fruity and light (but intense) chocolate brownie. Seriously, chocolate heaven.
Roti Canai at Roti King:
Ok, so it’s located next to a strip club. And you have to throw away your clothes after eating there. But it is so so worth it! You see, Roti King makes fresh, flaky roti in a variety of flavours. My favourites? The roti canai special (lamb) and the roti with spinach and cheese (so dirty, but insanely delicious!).
Want further proof of how good this place is? Check out Marina’s review!
Stollen and Lebkuchen:
A gift from my German teacher. My only regret is that I missed out on the dominosteine!
Two meats and two sides from Smokstak:
Excuse the rubbish photos, but I was too busy stuffing my face with the outrageously good pulled pork and beef brisket. Even the side dishes here are incredible (get a double portion of beans. They are, dare I say it, EVEN better than Pitt Cue’s!).
I may have ended up with sauce all over a brand new white shirt, but it was worth it. So worth it.
I was introduced to this divine combination at a friend’s Come Dine With Me. The brandy rich butter just melts into the slightly warmed mince pies, leaving you with mouthful of pure awesomeness. For Boxing Day, I am going to eat at least a dozen of these bad boys!
Giles, I owe you one!
Green Supreme juice from Boost:
A detoxer’s dream. Perfect for the run-up to Christmas.
All you can eat hogroast at Big Easy:
Despite being a chain, Big Easy do some brilliant dishes – the BBQ beans and the BBQ sauce are just two things that come to mind. Avoid the applesauce at all costs, however.
I highly recommend the Big Easy: the staff at Big Easy are very good fun, the bar will offer you any drink you can dream up and the live music adds to the lively atmosphere! My favourite thing however? They give you a bib!