Chicken Pho and Rainbow Side Salad – EAT, Bankside

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The HR department where I work always give out freebies or offer vouchers as long as you make an afford to pay them a visit and collect the freebies in person. Last week I scored 2 free bottles of anti dandruff shampoo (no, I do not have dandruff!) while this week was £1 off when you spend £6 voucher from EAT. Seeing the voucher is from EAT, reckon there must be one nearby so I went on the hunt.

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This is the first time I’m exploring this stretch of Bankside as it is a bit out of the way from my office entrance. Apart from EAT, there is a Zizzi, Pizza Express as well as The Real Greek and the omnipresent Starbucks.

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Feel a tad under the weather today and needed some comforting, I got the Chicken Pho at £4.99 and the Rainbow Side Salad at £2.59 to take the bill over £6 so I can use the discount voucher from HR. Boom is correct, £6 is not a figure plucked out from thin air, you need to at least purchase 2 products to enjoy the discount and I got suckered into it. Total bill after discount came up to £6.58.

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I used to have the noodle pots from EAT all the time and though I do make it a point to try their limited edition noodles when available, the Chicken Pho is my staple as it is light, refreshing and the cheapest of the noodle pots. I always appreciate the high ratio of veg vs noodles, it almost makes you feel healthy eating it. Don’t forget to get the server to add chopped chili to your noodle pot and a hard squeeze from the lime wedge will give your noodles a slight wicked edge.

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Over the years, I have noticed that EAT has been tweaking the recipe for their Chicken Pho. If I recall correctly, egg noodles was used when they first started serving this. Then there was a period when they swap to thin rice noodles or bee hoon for those in the know. It has been awhile since I had the Chicken Pho and I’m glad they now used the correct rice noodles, the broader kind known as kway teow or guo tiao depending on which chinese dialect you speak.

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Continuing with the healthy theme, the Rainbow Side Salad was made up of muki beans, pomegranate seeds, lentils, barley, cranberry, melon seeds, capsicum, shredded carrots and chives. I hope I did not miss anything. The zingy and tart mint dressing compliments the sweet components of the salad very well while the beans and pulses puts your jaws on a workout.

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I know, some people might think EAT is boring and I guess it can be. But when you need some comforting, nothing is better than trial and tested food that you know will not let you down.

EAT
Unit 3 Riverside House
2A Southwark Bridge Road
Bankside
London SE1 9HA
0207 636 8309

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Haggis, Neeps and Tatties – Chez Boom and Sillfield Farm, Borough Market

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One of my biggest past time on weekends is cooking. I’m always looking out for inspiration of new things to cook be it recipe from newspaper, supermarket freebie magazines or fellow food blogs. Seeing it’s Burns Night last Friday and I have a wee bottle of Scottish Whiskey hanging around, decided to grab some proper haggis from Borough Market and give Haggies, Neeps and Tatties a go.

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Wanted to get haggies from The Ginger Pig but they were sold out by lunch time. Had to resort to Plan B and got it from Sillfield Farm next door instead. The haggies supposedly comes in 2 sizes but they ran out of the big one so I had to get 2 small 3/4 pound ones instead. They were £3.95 each, not cheap considering it’s made from offal.

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For those of you who are curious, haggis is a traditional Scottish dish made from sheep’s pluck which is it’s heart, liver and lung. The cooked and minced pluck is mixed with onion, oats and various herbs and spices and stuffed in a casing so it’s something like a sausage. The “parcel” is boiled but unlike sausage, you don’t eat the casing.

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The classic accompaniment to haggis is neeps and tatties. Mashed turnip and swede and mashed potatoes. After reading several recipes from the interweb, I’m still not sure whether neeps refers to turnips or swede. Decided to go with swede since I thought the slight sweetness will go well with the rest of dish. Also made a basic Bisto gravy but added some leeks to it.

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I know the picture don’t look great, the lousy lighting at Chez Boom makes everything looks yellow (Junk included, well she is already yellow afterall). The pile with the green bits is the mashed potatoes, the green bits are chives.

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This is not the first time I have tried haggis but have to agree with Boom that this is best one we have both tried. The haggis is not dry at all and is rich and wholesome, no trace of offal taste at all. Combined with the creamy mash and slightly sweet mashed swede, it was the perfect meal for a cold winter night. Boom liked adding whiskey to the haggis while I prefer it without. Somehow the whiskey was too harsh for my taste. In all, really enjoyed it.

Chez Boom
Somewhere in West London
Open 24/7
Strictly by invitation
Only for the worthy

Sillfield Farm
Borough Market, Middle Market area
8 Southwark Street
London SE1 1TL