Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

Notting Hill Carnival 2017   Leave a comment

 

We went to the Notting Hill Carnival to drink beer (check), listen to loud music (check), look at mostly undressed folks (check-a-roonie), and to eat some Carribean food (check).

 

 

I didn’t take a lot of photos after the crowd grew almost unmanageable so this is what you’ll get from this page (apologies, but just image search “Notting Hill Carnival 2017” and you’ll find whatever it is you think you want).

 

We weren’t as drunk as the Iggy Pop looking mofo, above, but not because we didn’t give it the ol’ college try.  His dance was really not as impressive as the copper whose video turned up viral this morning.

 

 

While the crowd probably contained every black person within 500 miles, this is London so (despite racists moaning about being overrun) it was a fairly pale shade, overall.

 

 

I was excited to find an ornate VR postbox (my effort to prove myself the whitest guy at the Carnival, according to Jackie):

 

 

And, the home of one of the founding paraders:

 

 

The Grenfell disaster weighed on everyone’s minds and there were tributes to the victims throughout (and, miraculously, an actual minute of silence in this loudest of London parties).

 

 

That’s not why there was so much smoke in the next picture.  We imbibed in a modicum of hash before travel, but we could easily have sustained a contact high everywhere we went.  “Mahr-ree-wanna, mahr-ree-wanna…like the Bob Marley, mon,” intoned one street salesman as we pushed through a crowd.  That and the hundreds of jerk chicken and goat curry stands on almost every street left our clothing reeking of char.

 

 

The food was grand, too.  J had the goat and I had the chicken (contributing to the avian holocaust wherein more chicken is consumed in 2 days than in the whole rest of the London year).  I also had these numbers handed me on the Tube the day before:

16,000 coconuts
400 goats
15,000 plantains
70,000 litres of carrot juice
10,000 litres of Jamaican stout
25,000 bottles of rum.

I believe it.

 

Entrepreneurs in the neighbourhood rent out their toilets for £3 a go (£5 if you want to jump the queue).  The dry compost loos provided by the borough make it an understandable (if not justifiable) luxury.

 

 

The first and last — the Alpha and Omega, if you will — stands we saw were this troupe of God Botherers:

 

 

One of them — at the far left of the photo — gave me a leaflet with a long, preachy cartoon.  Distilled, below, are the bits I thought I could use here (but opted not to bother):

 

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WP Fish X Chips, Acton, London   Leave a comment

 

The lunch special at MP Fish X Chips is cod bites and chips for 5 quid. I expected smaller bits and less fish overall so the large portions were a nice surprise. On the other hand, the place caters to yuppie tastes so the oil they used was a healthy alternative to beef drippings making for a most bland meal. Not worth a detour, but at least you could fill up.

 

Posted August 25, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Fish and Chips, Food

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Ginny’s Pie & Mash, Plaistow, London   3 comments

 

Finally reaching Ginny’s after some wrong turns that went surprisingly right, I thought, “mmm, stewed eels with green liquor and chilli vinegar…living the dream, I am.”

 

 

Okay, the folks at the Lord Stanley were right: there ARE better batches of eels to be had but I don’t think they prepare them fresh here every day or at all.  Mine had to be thawed then heated to order (although the green liquor was fresh and tangy since they use it on the pie and mash that the other customers were demolishing around me).  Still, my biggest mistake was only ordering the bowl of 5 (10 come for a small increase in tariff).

 

Best conversation:

Pie and Mash woman 1: “I’m popping down the baker, do you want anything?”
Pie and Mash woman 2: “I’m starving. Bring us a sausage roll.”
Me, pointing around the kitchen: “Ahem…”
Pie and Mash woman 1: “Ooo, you get tired of pie and mash all day, every day.”
Me: “Fair enough.”

 

Posted August 21, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Fish and Chips, Food

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Feast of St Arnold 2017   1 comment

 

Today is the Feast of St Arnold, patron saint of Belgian brewers and hop pickers. The long weekend of celebrations started Wednesday with the run honouring Women. While one such Woman out in LA was completing an honour worthy project, we shamefully (or is that “shameLESSly”?) slacked off in the spirit of the season.

 

 

 

It wasn’t all fun and games, though.  Thursday I had to endure a bit of photography based biopsy of some more skin cancers before we were free to go to the Church Street Market in St John’s Wood and then wander around Ealing. The marvelous art deco building at the top of this posting can be found at the intersection of Luton and Penfold in St John’s Wood. After a run down to Hanger Lane, we settled into martinis and some BBQ chicken.

 

 

 

Friday was devoted to household chores such as strimming our weed-and-food-wrapper filled lawn then hanging out in Ruislip thrift stores. Out the back gate, I fought nettles and thorns to gather enough blackberries for some infused vodka (a Thanksgiving treat, if all goes well).

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday, I used some of the charity shop finds to start fermenting a jar of garlic then roasted the remaining heads to make a batch of pesto. To ferment garlic, peel the cloves (the last layer should be left on at least a few of them as this is where the bacteria and yeasts that do the work will be found). Leave some head space and pour a brine of 1 TBS non-iodized (think Kosher) salt per liter of chlorine-free water. Weigh the cloves down, cover, and check back every now and again for 4-6 weeks. Use this like roasted garlic although it should still be firm enough to grate. If you add it at the end of a recipe (that is, don’t cook it), you can diversify your gut microbiome with these.

 

 

 

Pesto recipe:
shitload of garlic
some toasted pine nuts
lots and lots of basil
olive oil
salt & black pepper
Parmesan Reggiano

Blitz all of this together, taste, and adjust to taste whilst trying hard not to eat it all during preparation.

 

 

 

 

The second fermentation project (remember, this is all about St Arnold), is a turmeric bug, sort of a starter culture for carbonated lemonades and limeades. Wash the turmeric but chop it up skins and all to make about 3 teaspoons. Add this and 3 teaspoons of brown sugar to 750 mL of water. Cover and put it in an airing cabinet or other stable, warm place. Feed it, daily, 3 more tsp each of turmeric and sugar until it starts to bubble up pretty good (as much as a week) then transfer to the fridge to slow it down. Feed the bug with a TBS of sugar each week. A half cup of the bug juice plus a half cup of sugar in a gallon of lemon water makes your fizzy lemonade (use Grolsch bottles to store it).

 

 

Things went a bit awry Sunday as I broke a cocktail glass then Frank Sinatra screwed us: One For My Baby, the last cut on Only the Lonely, was far enough toward the warning track on the album that our turntable shut off and I had to turn the disk by hand (the very hands, I remind you, that had just clumsily dropped a cocktail glass).

 

 

Eating well is the best cure for a streak of bad luck like this and I opted for a big pot of prawn Phô. I couldn’t find unpeeled shrimps at the store but I had some frozen bits of sea bream in the freezer from last week and combined them with some existing broth and vegetables to cook into a makeshift fish broth (normally I’d use the prawn heads and shells). Cassoulet may be my Desert Island Dish, but if I were able to find some way to make noodles and gather seafood this would diversify my menu.

 

 

So, now it is off to work … and, on a proper Holy Day, no less.  The plan is to down a Dubbel in Arnold’s name ahead of barbecuing some burgers tonight (although that should probably be some “Brugers”).

 

 

GB Kebabs, Ruislip, Middlesex   Leave a comment

 

There is a pharmacy right next to GB Kebab.  This is probably a codicil of the business license.  On the other hand, my gut microbiome will never be healthier or more diverse if I can ever flush away the salt.

 

Posted August 11, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Food, Kebabs

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Breddos Tacos, Clerkenwell, London   Leave a comment

 

I know better, but I fancied some tacos and made my way to Breddos.  I reckoned it would be full of yuppie scum, and I was right.  I watched the bartender make some lovely margaritas, though, while my food was prepped.

 

 

I got the lunch takeaway special: choice of 3 tacos from the menu for £9 including some fried tortillas and salsa.  “The dark one is chipotle and the other one is a bit spicier with habañero.”  Mmm-hmm.

Everything was tasty.  Nothing was spicy.  And, it was really, really small.

 

Posted August 10, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Food

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Streatham Kebab, Fish and Chips House, Streatham, London   2 comments

 

Up at 5:30 Monday and out of the house at 7:30 without breakfast, I had a pint at 9 then three more at the tail end of the day’s run.  I was starved as I ran the final segment to the station when the aroma of fetid lamb fat (my favourite!) wafted out of the Streatham Kebab, Fish & Chips House.  “Döner meat and chips, please,” and I waited patiently as the elephant leg spun slowly before the heater.  The chilli sauce could have been thicker and hotter, but I couldn’t fault any of the rest of this divine ½ kg of stomach distress.

Yummy.

Posted July 13, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Food, Kebabs

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