Bulgogi Beef Dosirak – Kimchee, The Strand

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This is another place I found in my wandering through town. Since I have a fellow colleague nearby, decided to drag him to lunch and give this place a try.

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Kimchee as the name might suggest, is a Korean outfit serving Korean cuisine. Looking at there website, they have 2 outlets focusing on takeaway food with some seating area, one at The Strand and the other at New Oxford Street. There is also a full fledged restaurant somewhere in Holborn. So all within center of London.

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The layout of the takeaway outlet should be familiar to most by now. There is a cold fridge area with drinks, salads and cold dishes while another warm area with the hot food. I fought my usual Noodle Queen urge and went for the warm rice boxes.

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Decided on the Bulgogi Beef Dosirak which I understand is the Korean version of a bento box at £6.95. Added a side of kimchi at 99p and a Plum Tea at £1.45 (I’, pretty sure it is Plum Tea though the receipt says Citron Tea). Total bill at £9.39 which is rather steep.

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The weather in London has been a blessing recently. My mate and I found ourselves eating on a park bench under bright sunshine. Feeling a tad hangover, the refreshing Plum Tea came to the rescue. Slight tangy, not too sweet, was the perfect cure for my parched throat. Served on crushed ice, that would challenge a Pimms anytime!

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Have to say I’m a tad disappointed with my main choice. The beef which should be the star of the show was a tad dry and I would like it to be more seasoned. There were 2 gyozas which was average and the rest of the sides fared the same. The rice luckily was well cooked, not too dry with the rice grains intact and still sticky.

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The kimchi, namesake of the outlet was a pleasant surprise. Fresh tasting, the right amount of tartness while still maintaining the crunch of the cabbage. I would gladly have eaten another portion.

I might give the soup noodles a try if I’m ever back that way but it won’t be in a hurry!

Kimchee
388 Strand
London WC2R 0LT
0207 240 4515

Penang Beef and Ginger Chicken Noodles – Bangkok Kitchen, London Bridge

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Had to make a trip to the Post Office during lunchtime today so decided to pickup some lunch from the Bangkok Kitchen food truck parked just outside the Post Office.

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I have blogged about Bangkok Kitchen not too long ago and if I recall, I thought the food was ok and definitely value for money. There was a couple of people before me in the queue today and I managed to pickup some ordering tips from the gentlemen. The menu say all dishes with rice and noodles for £4.50 but was not specific on whether it’s one dish or you can have a bit from the options available. The gentlemen in front of me asked for 2 dishes with noodles and he only paid £4.50 and I decided to do the same.

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Not that there were options galore  As before, there were 3 choices and today’s were Red Chicken Curry, Penang Beef Curry and Ginger Chicken. I chose the Ginger Chicken as I don’t want 2 curries and went with the Pad Thai noodles instead of rice. The Penang Beef looks suspiciously like the Red Thai Beef Curry I had previously but I went for it since I don’t want to end up with 2 chicken dishes. I also added a Vegetable Spring Roll for £1 and went a bit overboard with the chili sauces as I always do.

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I won’t say much about the Vegetable Spring Roll as it’s just what it is. Packed full with a mixture of glass noodles, cabbage, carrots and black wood ear mushroom, it seriously lacked seasoning. Luckily, sweet chili sauce is included which solved the taste issue. For £1, can’t complain.

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It would seem that unlike Singapore Noodles which does not exist in Singapore, Penang Curry exist in Penang! Compared to last time, I think I made a much better choice this time. The beef in the Penang Beef Curry was tender probably due to the stewing process. The Ginger Chicken was the surprise dish for me. It taste strongly of ginger in a good way and was made with chicken thigh which I preferred over chicken breast. Apart from chicken, the dish also had slices of capsicum, onion and button mushroom. The Pad Thai noodle was ok, perhaps a bit mushy and too tangy for my taste. Do take my comments on the Pad Thai with a pinch of salt, I have never liked Pad Thai in the first place so am probably biased.

Bangkok Kitchen
Next to London Bridge Post Office
19A Borough High Street
London SE1 9SF

Curry Laksa – Hare and Tortoise, Blackfriars

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After spending a couple of years in the Continent and getting my fill of the various types of European cuisine, I find myself starting to crave for the common fare readily available in my home country. Laksa was a much craved after item. When I moved to London, was ecstatic when the Asian restaurant around the corner from me have a version of Curry Laksa! From that day onwards, I order nothing else but Curry Laksa whenever I visit Hare and Tortoise. The Boom might tease me for this but I don’t care! To me, nothing else in the menu interest me.

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I have since moved away from where I first lived in London but am glad there is a Hare and Tortoise branch just across the river from where I’m working. The Boom gladly came along as though he is not addicted to the Curry Laksa like yours truly, he has another dish which he can’t help but ordering. Pot and kettle…

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If you are intending to pay the Blackfriars branch a visit for lunch, do go before 1pm and try to avoid Fridays as they tend to be pretty crowded. Having said that, we never had to wait long for a seat even when there is a queue. Some pictures of the menu above and below. Nice pictures to give you an idea of what you are ordering.

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The menu is mostly filled with Japanese options with sushi, tempura and donburi. But they also have some South East Asian options like my Curry Laksa, Char Kuey Tiew and Curry Chicken with Rice. The Curry Laksa is £7.10 which I believe have gone up in price since I first tried it back in the day. Not surprising I guess.

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The topping and noodles of the laksa as always is more than generous. You get 3 big slices each of chicken breast, prawns, squid, naruto and fried beancurd. Big bunch of beansprouts and sliced cucumber adds crunch to the thin rice noodles. The all important gravy made with the typical spices and heavy on coconut milk is rich and creamy. Scattered throughout were curry leaves which somehow I don’t think adds much but perhaps their taste have been leeched into the gravy.

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I think the portion and ingredients is well worth the £7.10. Another dish I would highly recommend is the Miso Ramen while Boom swears by the Char Kuey Tiew as well as the Curry Chicken with Rice.

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Hare and Tortoise
90 New Bridge Road
London EC4V 6JJ
0207 651 0266