Har Gau


Saturday, 1 November 2008

Fajitas, curry and cupcakes

Obviously not at the same time. That would generate enough gas energy to light up the Vegas stretch for weeks.

These are more than just cupcakes. Not just because they cost £1.80 per cup, but because each cupcake gives as much glee as having an entire cake while shopping.

I don't know what makes them so good. Actually, I do, but I prefer not to dwell on that. If you look at it closely, you'll see that as opposed to your own-baked miserable dry cakes, these cupcakes are topped with what I like to call 'fluff'. Calling it 'fluff' is infinitely better than calling it butter and sugar, because that just sounds daft (and not as chic).

On top of the 'fluff', there's more 'dazzle' (more bits of sugar). The overall effect is that this is no longer just a cupcake. No. It's diva-like, and should have its own dressing room filled with roses and kittens (don't ask me, ask Mariah).

One of these can contain up to 2 cupcakes. This means that at any one time in these boxes, there could be a shouting match between 2 divas, each wanting its own space, its own comfy couch and its own cosy little corner.

So I eat one.
Which one? Which one? Oh well, I'll eat both.

Essentially meat in gravy wrapped in a flat circular piece of bread. Traditionally from Mexico, modern day version from my kitchen.

Fajita kits are available in most stores, containing the wraps (usually 8 pieces), salsa, and the spices to cook the chicken or beef with.

What I do is I marinade the chicken for about an hour prior to cooking, and I find that this brings out the flavours of the spices more than if you were to sprinkle them on the chicken while cooking. I add in the peppers (capsicum) and onions towards the end of the simmering process because I like the veg to be crunchy, and serve the chicken in a bowl. The wraps are heated on a foil-wrapped plate in the oven at 180 degrees for about 5 minutes, and the salsa is served in another bowl. Sometimes, I add sour cream or cheese to the toppings.

How to make one:
1. Take a piece of wrap and put it in the centre of the plate. If you have a very small plate, get a bigger one.
2. Put the chicken in the middle of the wrap, but not so much that you just KNOW you're not gonna be wrapping that anytime soon.
3. Add the sour cream, salsa and cheese.
4. Wrap it up.
5. Try to eat it, realise that chicken pieces are now on the couch, pick them up, eat with fork and spoon.

Yaki-udon (from Zin, Greenwich)

When you don't want to cook, there's the option of the takeaway. Zin in Greenwich is one of my favourite cosy corners to get cheap Chinese food, with portions big enough for hungry uni students to call this their favourite restaurant.

The restaurant has 7 tables, and could probably take about 20-ish people on a busy day. However, from what I've seen, it's only busy on Fridays and weekends, so perhaps that's why they've not expanded to a bigger restaurant. The menu is a mixture of Japanese sushi and sashimi, and one-dish meals (ramen soup, sweet and sour chicken with rice, curry chicken with rice).

This is one restaurant where it's better value ordering 2 main meals instead of a starter and a main. The price of the starters very from £2.00 (soup) to £3.50 (squid in batter), while the mains are priced at £4.30. Portions are sufficient (i.e. lots of it) and as long as you don't order seafood-based items (the prawns are not the freshest), you should be quite pleased with yourself.

This is the Malaysian curry chicken and rice that we bought as a takeaway from Zin. There's potatoes and chicken in a spicy, cononuty curry gravy, and for £4.30, that's very good value (in London anyway).

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