Diwana Bhel Poori House – Euston

January 7, 2015
diwana-dosa

Diwana Bhel Poori House is one of the cheapest eating out options in London, let alone Zone 1. This was my regular student lunch place/ BYO dinner option in 2008 and every now and again, I have dreams of coconut chutney… just me, and coconut chutney, and no-one and nothing else for miles around….

Also BYO (neighbouring off license), with a £6 lunch buffet, they have been feeding students and academics for decades. It’s easily possible to eat for £10 per person, even including mango lassis for hangover fuel.

But beware, when I say decades, I mean this literally. Which includes the decor. Classic pine ridged panels line the interior, which make me reminisce for the 80s (my childhood kitchen), so if you’re one of these sticklers for chandeliers, granite, marble, or daylight… this may not be the place for you. Similarly, the service is not exactly silver, but it’s decent, so, you’ve been told….

The house speciality is, obviously, Bhel poori, a popular savoury Indian street food snack. Including puffed rice amongst numerous other ingredients, crispy, with a hint of sweetness, sour-tang from tamarind…

    (All Asians have the appetites of stoners, discuss…)

So, of course, starters were **drum roll** bhel poori, obviously, and mixed Bhajis…. and, of course, a mango lassi… These were all really good. Bhel poori is made (compiled? chucked together?) to order, so crispy, crunchy, zingy flavours were all abounding.

The bhajis were light, not greasy, although, if I’m brutally honest, my primal instinct urges me to order 2 plates of bhel poori, just for me….

diwana-belpoori

Main courses were a sag aloo dosa, and mixed thali. The dosa was light and crispy, filled with lightly spiced sag aloo, accompanied by coconut chutney (yes!) a small pot of dahl and some other chilli, which was nice, but, hey, coconut chutney. What I tasted of the thali was great however, as “my” main was better, I was kinda distracted (full) so do not have a detailed run down to give at this point.

diwana-dosa

nb. if you, hungover, hungrily, over-order, you can get a doggy bag to take away. Coconut chutney tastes damn good at 2am… (I really gotta learn to make this for myself…)

Diwana Bhel Poori House on Urbanspoon

Nasi Lemak Face-off: KL vs LDN

June 15, 2014
nasi-lemak-hawker-unwrapped

nb. GBP/ £1 = RM7 approximately

**spoiler alert – This isn’t a real Face Off – there are 3 “contenders” and they’re all awesome**
Although the food is better in Malaysia itself, OF COURSE

Contender 1: Little Penang Cafe, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Pictured is the take-out version of the Nasi Lemak with assam prawns and also some otak-otak on the side.
The cost of this is about MYR$10, and is more of a main course/ dinner version, hence is more substantial and varied than the other 2 Contenders.

nasi-lemak-lil-penang

Contender 2: Indian Hawker stall, Jalan Pahang, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Cost: MYR$1
This is the most similar to the breakfast dish I remember getting from the side of the road. Simple, cheap, and you can always eat more than one….
This was the only one that came with peanuts! Which I always think of as a must-have although I’m sure plenty of people would disagree with me

nasi-lemak-hawker-wrapped

nasi-lemak-hawker-unwrapped

and if this teeny tiny $1 dish doesn’t fill you up, you can also have…. potato poori…. mmm

potato-puri

Contender 3: Malaysia High Commission, London, UK

Cost: GBP£3.50
The most “simple” of the three. It paled in comparison to the first 2 as the rice was a little harder and less coconutty/ fragrant, and the sambal was a tiny bit oilier than I would have liked.

nasilemak-mhc-lon-v2

The Result: Malaysia is better…. but no matter where you are in the world (or KL/ London….) you can always find something good….

GF Eats: Vozars, Brixton

May 13, 2014
vozars-porkbelly2

Vozars is a former GF bakery turned GF restaurant in Brixton market. The ever-changing menu is small, but affordable, and they’re completely GF, including GF beers, and repeat visits entailed great home cooked food and friendly service. Excellent value for money despite being GF. Approximately £10-15 per head including drinks (a slightly ropey glass of £3 rose for me)

Menu changes daily, so you won’t be as lucky as me to have….

Pork belly and luscious mash, £8.50 (I know… what??!!! :p)

vozars-porkbelly2

Chicken strips sandwich was somewhere around the £6.50 mark, on repeat visits, there was different bread, which is no mean feat for a GF restaurant, and a treat (in London, anyways), for those who are genuine coeliacs, to actually have a wealth of choice.

vozars-chickenstrips

Eat here! GF or not, it’s yummy

Vozars on Urbanspoon

GF Eats: Carnaby Burger Company, W1

February 13, 2014
carnabyburgerco

carnabyburgerco

For the hungry coeliac in Soho, Carnaby Burger Co is a relatively safe option. I won’t write a lot as the food was kinda bland. Photos were non-existent (yes, even worse than my normal amateurish nonsense), as the lighting’s pretty bad. We also had macaroni cheese (with a lot of bacon, yum, and chicken breast, sarcastic yay), and nachos.

Things were definitely GF-safe, proved so on repeat visits, but also massive portions and tbh kinda bland, get bored about half way through (although I am of spoilt, asian multi-dish eating culture). Burgers (eg. below) are definitely the best option, as they’re actually quite delicious.

carnabyburgerco-burger

Side note: Leave a big tip! This restaurant is the most poorly planned/ designed restaurant I have ever been to. I think it may be run by new graduates. It’s a horrible rabbit warren, and the worst day of the shittiest job I’ve had (and I’ve had some shitty shitty jobs), would be better than working here. The staff here are lovely and helpful and understandably frazzled. They deserve a lil extra for putting up with this crap.

Carnaby Burger Co. on Urbanspoon

Honest Burgers, Soho: Gluten Free haven

December 10, 2013
GF and non-GF burgers
GF and non-GF burgers

GF and non-GF burgers

There are scores of reviews for this restaurant, so you know it’s ace. However, I have a really REALLY good friend who is highly sensitive to gluten, so places like Honest Burgers are great, because they are actually knowledgeable and will look out for you in a reliable but non-pushy way. And will be v tolerant of a friend who is uber paranoid since a near poisoning with Colman’s mustard (contains flour :( ) .

Non-GF (bacon cheese) is in the front, GF (chicken)n is in the back. The buns are from a deservedly reputable bakery in Brixton, the GF was not as fluffy as the non-GF however, the taste of both burgers was great. As ordered, chips crispy and nice too.

Bill all in about £30 for two, including a green salad (simple, fresh, lovely, can’t go wrong unless you don’t like vegetables, weirdo) and a fair bit of wine.

Waiting staff are awesomely cute, lovely and helpful too, so tip loads 😉

Honest Burgers on Urbanspoon