Meatball Curry Rice – De Lites, Shadwell

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Damn Stan! Every Monday, I religiously go to my Canary Wharf office cos of the regular meetings he has set up but for the past month, he keeps rescheduling them to other days which makes my trip redundant. He really took a mickey today by moving the location to my Brick Lane office! Not only was my trip to Canary Wharf wasted, now I have to haul my ass (a small one mind you!) to East London!

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Enough mad woman rants, one saving grace of this diversion is I managed to checkout this small cafe between Shadwell DLR and Shadwell Overground. I have walked past it whenever I travel from one office to another and am intrigued by their special of the day. Some days, it’s biryani, others Lamb Curry and today, it’s Meatball Curry. Was in a rush and so I gave it a try.

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De Lites is one of your typical cafe selling sandwiches, breakfast and pre made lunches. Looking at the toasted paninis that the other diners are having, they look to be well made, generous and even has a side salad. Apart from ordering the Meatball Curry, I also added a lamb samosa. Yes yes, I can’t resist a samosa. The daily special was £4.50 while the samosa was £1.15, total price came to £5.65 which is pretty affordable I think.

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When I unpacked the box, was pretty surprised by the amount of rice I was given, not that I’m complaining. Curry and rice, definitely nice (noddy head). The curry sauce was tasty and rich with cardamon pods and other spices, not too spicy but beware of munching on the cardamom pods. Was expecting the meatballs to be factory made and stuffed with carb fillers but was glad that they looked to be homemade with lean beef and the six I was given with the rice more than filled my tum. The nice lady at the counter even packed a small bag of mixed salad for me which added much needed crunch to my lunch. The samosa on the other hand was nothing great. The samosas from Amar Gaon still triumphs!

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Never occurred to me that you can make a curry out of meatballs, definitely gives me inspiration when I cook at home next. Meatball and boiled egg curry anyone?

De Lites
81 Watney Street
London E1 2QE
0207 790 7100

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Arabian Kasbah Rice and Corn Tabouleh – Chez Boom

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Got some spice mix when I was on vacation, can’t help but go to a local supermarket to stock up on some local stuff. A couple of jars of Nutella like bread spread but made up of sesame seeds instead of hazelnuts, some instant noodles and the spice mix I’m using tonight.

What an exotic name! Arabian Kasbah it’s called. Looking at the cooking instruction, I think it’s like a biryani. The protein gets browned and boil till tender, then the veg and rice goes in with the yogurt. Well, that’s not exactly what the instruction said but I improvised.

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Side dish time. The recommendation on the spice mix instructions was for a raita or a salad. Decided to make a tabouleh as it’s easy and refreshing. The Boom was pretty sure he has some couscous or bulgur wheat lying around but I think he is losing his marbles. Seeing an old tin of sweet corn, said to myself why not? Sweet corn and parsley should work? Added the usual tomatoes, minced garlic, chopped onions, lemon juice and the sweet corn.

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The end result was pretty good! Made the rice with some lamb steaks from Waitrose and it turned out slightly spicy with pretty strong hints of cardamon, bay leafs which enhanced the taste of the lamb. Sweet corn worked very well in the tabouleh and was the perfect contrast to the rich taste of the lamb. In all, pretty satisfied.

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Chez Boom
Somewhere in West London
Open 24/7
Invitation only for the worthy

Curry Chicken – Chez Boom

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If you’ve been following my fledging blog, you would realise that I do spend quite a bit for lunch. Not being a fat cat banker, I do need to tighten my belt sometimes. Also, I’ve been promising an austerity lunch for a while. So today, it’s leftovers for lunch with some additions.

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Potato Bread

Last week, the Boom decided to make some bread, something he never had luck with. Finally he managed to make something decent and so I offered to make curry chicken so we can dip the bread he so lovingly made. According to him, the recipe from the Hairy Bikers is very trusty and consistent. Blame Boom if it didn’t work for you! I’m glad to say that for once, Boom’s bread tastes like bread! Crusty on the outside, Soft and fluffy on the inside. Nothing goes better with chicken curry then crusty bread with a slab of butter. Ok, white fluffy rice does the trick as well!

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I’ve been trying to replicate the curry chicken that my Mom used to make but somehow, there is a “something something” that always eludes me. Does not help that I don’t use precise measurements when I cook, then again my Mom don’t measure as well! On to my chicken curry, the list of ingredients include, shallots, fresh and dried chillies, ginger, lemongrass, curry powder, cardamom pods, coconut milk, spuds and a whole chicken cut into pieces.

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Don’t know why, but curries tend to taste better the next day after cooking so Boom and I ate most of it the next day after I cooked it but there was still some leftovers. So I’m having it for lunch today. Coupled the curry with Tilda’s Mushroom Rice and a small bag of mix veg from Tesco. Curry Chicken was from leftover so basically free, the mushroom rice was languishing in my pantry so free as well. The only thing I paid for was the mix veg bag from Tesco. It was 2 for £2.50 so £1.25 each. In all, not a bad lunch I’d say!

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Chez Boom
Somewhere in West London
Mon-Sun 24 hours
Only for the worthy
Strictly by invitation 🙂