Butchies Buttermilk Chicken Burger – Red Market, Shoreditch

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Sorry folks! Junk has been too obsessed with her underwater hobby to eat much, let alone write recently. Luckily, managed to dig out some pics from an outing a few weeks back with Boom so shall attempt to trawl through my memory of what was on offer.

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Heard about Red Market from the foodie grapevine but did not managed to visit last year. So when I heard they are back this year, dragged Boom who just works around the corner for a recon. See! We were so unfashionably early that the sign to the market was still being painted!

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The night we were there, the follow outfits were present, Deshi Roti, Mei Mei’s Street Cart, La Casa Del Burrito, Bare Bone Cue, Last Gelatiera, Butchies and Dough Brothers. We did have the Hoisin Duck Jian Bing from Mei Mei’s Street Cart but once again both Boom and Junk committed the carnal sin of food bloggers. Thou shall not eat before thy snap! But from what I recall, we both enjoyed the Chinese crepe though we both felt the hoisin sauce a tad sweet.

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Next, we decided to give the Buttermilk Chicken Burger from Butchies a try. Also threw in a portion of twice cooked chips to share. If I recall, the burger was £6 while the chips were £2.50.

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The twice cooked chips were pretty good, cut from fresh spuds and served with chipotle mayo. Unlike frozen chips, they have the earthy spud taste. Sorry! Pic taken after half the portion was consumed.

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We both enjoyed the burger! Deep fried chicken thigh marinated in buttermilk with bacon and lettuce, dressed with chipotle mayo and guacamole, stuffed into a sweet toasted brioche bun. Total yum!

More picture taken of the market, enjoy!

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Red Market SS14
288-299 Old Street
London EC1V 9DP

 

15 Course Tasting Menu – HKK, Liverpool Street

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The Boom decided to splash out and took me to HKK for their 15 course tasting menu yesterday night. The location of HKK is rather obscure, on the edge of Shoreditch and the City. Also, the facade is unassuming, no name of the restaurant, just frosted glass and cool blue lights.

Finally something worth blogging about. Won’t write much since there are so many pictures!

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See! 15 course tasting menu at £95! You can check out their menu online.
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Cripsy taro puff with Canadian scallop. This is the upmarket version of your typical dim sum taro puff. Instead of minced pork, it’s filled with diced scallop. I could happily have a few more puffs. The Boom liked this as well though he thought the mushy taro “dirtied” the fresh taste of the scallop.

wpid-wp-1391865598542.jpeg Cold jumbo crab. Chunky piece of crab meat on a leaf of chicory with a Shao Xing rice wine sauce. We thought the bitterness of the chicory leaf will overpower the delicate taste of the crab but luckily, the inner tender leaf of chicory was used so our fear was moot! Apart from Shao Xing wine, we both think some wasabi was used. Nice and refreshing with a tad of bite.

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Cherry wood roasted Peking duck. This was the highlight of the night! A slice of duck skin, a thick slice of duck breast with skin and a wrap with duck meat, skin and slivers of cucumber and spring onion.

We were instructed (yes, instructed!) to dip the skin in the sugar and hoi sin sauce and eat that first, followed by the breast meat with skin and lastly the wrap. Boy! This was some good stuff. Simply the best Peking duck I have ever tasted. The skin is crispy with a bit of duck fat that just melts in your mouth. The slice of duck breast was juicy and moist, simply delightful! The Boom wanted more and was waxing lyrical about how his life will be complete if he can have a whole duck with a bottle of nice red wine. The Boom and his duck craze, don’t blame him, this duck is top quack!

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The yummy duck roasting away in the kitchen.

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Truffled seafood soup with Osmanthus flower. We were once again instructed to lower the spoon filled with sea bass and scallop into the soup to warm the seafood up slightly before drinking the soup. We were expecting a light bodied soup and thus was surprised this was more like a chowder. Rich and totally umami.

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Dim sum trilogy. We both loved the deep fried dumpling that is wrapped in vermicelli and topped with caviar. The skin of the white dumpling is far too thick and the mouth feel was gummy and not pleasant. The red spicy dumpling fared slightly better, thinner skin but still too thick but have an interesting filling. Ginger, five spice and Szechuan peppercorn. Disappointing overall.

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Braised organic Duke of Berkshire pork with Mantou. I was expecting a white fluffy bun stuffed with the braised pork and so was very surprised by the 50p size bun. Taste wise, the bun was just bad! Slightly crispy on the outside with texture of wholemeal bread on the inside. Totally out of character. The moist and tender braised pork saved this dish to be let down once again by the overly sweet sauce. Even the Boom thought the sauce to be too sweet.

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Sugar snap, lotus root and water chestnut in XO sauce. This dish showcase the different texture of the vegetables. Nice, but nothing spectacular.

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Hawberry red bean cake and glutinous sesame ball served with white peony tea. Junk has done it again! I ate my portion of this dish without taking a pic so had to hijack the same dish from the neighboring table for a snap.

We both thought the the proportion of the hawberry jelly could be more to better balance the coconut red bean cake.

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Wok fried lobster in garlic sesame sauce. The Boom thought the lobster was slightly on the tough side. The sauce was just meh.

wpid-wp-1391865909137.jpeg Char grilled Chilean sea bass. This dish we both love. The smoky char taste contrasted wonderfully with the naturally sweet taste of the sea bass.
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Seared Wagyu beef in VSOP sauce. The Boom say this is like pulled pork which I can understand. There is a slight moo to the beef but could not discern the fatty marbling I would expect from a Wagyu. Perhaps because the cut has been braised?

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Seared Rhug Farm organic lamb with pan mee. This was average. I was expecting handmade pan mee noodles. Instead, the noodles tasted more like pad thai. The lamb pieces was way too salty I thought.

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Lemon cream, citrus sable and yogurt sorbet. Most of the other reviews I’ve read of HKK all said the dessert was a let down. I thought otherwise which is rare as I’m not a big dessert fan. We both loved this dish. The tart of the lemon cream and sorbet balanced the rich butter biscuit base. Only thing I would say is though well executed, this is not a typical Chinese dessert.

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Chocolate velvet, roast banana and five spice crouton. Another non Chinese dessert but utterly delicious! After the tartness of the last dish, this was rich and warming. The roast banana goes so well with the rich chocolate mousse. Slightly let down by the crouton. Way too hard and tough.
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Selection of petits fours. This reminds me of Pick and Mix from Woolworths… meh!
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The final verdict! Not cheap, won’t be repeating it again soon but a worthwhile experience.

HKK
Broadgate West
88 Worship Street
London EC2A 2BE
020 3535 1888

Cataplana de Porco Alentejano – Eyre Brothers, Shoreditch

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Junk lucked out today! She got to go to a rather posh restaurant for lunch and all thanks to Stan! Yes, that damned one I was cursing the other day. Then again, it wasn’t purely out of the goodness of his heart, it took a Kindle to make him cough up lunch. The story goes, since I got a tablet and am running the Kindle Android app on it to read, saw no point to my Kindle with keyboard. In the spirit of decluttering, decided to flog it off to willing takers. That’s where Stan came in and I offered him the Kindle in exchange for lunch.

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Apparently he has been wanting to try Eyre Brothers after reading about it in Timeout, guess this is the opportunity. The restaurant is located within walking distance from Shoreditch High Street Overground and is in the midst of some pretty funky shops, restaurants and cafes. I should really spread my wings and wander around that area for lunch.

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Unlike other Spanish/Portuguese restaurants, the decor is very modern with no reference to the restaurant’s culture influences. I find that very refreshing, not a single toro in sight. Stan made reservations and suggested the Cataplana de Porco Alentejano which is a sharing dish for two. Pork, clams and being free, can’t say no now can I?  Also ordered a side of braised cabbage greens as the token veg. The Nigerian and Mr CSS were also invited and they ordered a lamb and a hake dish respectively and they both looked pretty good as well.

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Pork and clams, some might think that it is a weird combination but it turned out spectacular. The pork belly was braised just right, tender enough to tear with a spoon yet still maintained a slight bite. The clams provided the briny ozone taste of the sea to the braising liquid which I think had some red wine, rosemary and something that gave it the anise taste. Tarragon perhaps? Some lemon wedges and coriander were served with the dish and we were told to pile our plate with fried potatoes, the stew, a scattering of coriander and topping it all off with a good squeeze of lemon juice. The recommendation worked great, the lemon juice and coriander complimented the rich stew perfectly.  2 minor complains, the fried potatoes were slightly under cooked, could be crispier and if only bigger clams were used. The ones we had were tiny. Perhaps it’s not clam season?

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Mains for the 4 of us with water, 2 Cokes and an orange juice for around £110 which includes service charge of 12.5%, not an everyday lunch thing but good as the occasional treat! Thanks Stan! Hope you enjoy the Kindle.

Eyre Brothers
70 Leonard Street
London EC2A 4QX
0207 613 5346

Jungle Curry Duck Noodles – Thai & Laos Street Food, Shoreditch Boxpark

 

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Double post today! Hungry Junk you see. So I had to travel from the Canary Wharf office to the Brick Lane office around lunch time and decided to pickup lunch from a place newly relocated to Shoreditch Boxpark. I have tried Thai & Laos Street Food when they are still a food truck at Ely’s Yard, Brick Lane. Back then, they are usually a 2 person operation, the young chap and I guess his partner you can see in the picture in the link.

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Compared to the rest of the other food joint in the Boxpark, I would say the Thai & Laos Street Food’s container decor is not as funky. But the graffiti wall and the menu written on torn cardboard and simply pasted on the wall seem to work without the feeling that they are trying too hard. There are laminated menus with pictures available as well if you can’t imagine what you order from the written menu.

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Apart from the young chap and his partner, Mom and Pop are on hand to help with the cooking today. Mom took the orders, Pop handled the side dish while the couple took care of the main dishes. All made fresh on order, total family affair. I asked how was business since relocating from Ely’s Yard, the answer was they were very well received. Looking at the customers at 1430, I would say it was a wise move.

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So you chose a protein (veg, chook, salmon, prawn, moo, quack), a sauce and either noodles or rice. Pad Thai with a choice of protein and soup is also available. I went with Duck, Jungle Curry with noodles with a side of fried spring rolls. The main dish is £6 and the 7 small spring rolls at £2. Back to my bad habits I guess.

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Taste wise, it’s good! Spicy, tangy and the crunchy veg with the rich duck breast slices was great. I enjoyed it alot especially after swimming 50 laps in 20 minutes. But is it Jungle Curry? I don’t really think so. I have had the red curry version which was more representative of what it is. If you want something tasty, it will hit the spot. But you will probably not get authenticity. Then again, it’s just lunch!

Thai & Laos Street Food
Unit 53
Shoreditch Boxpark
2-4 Bethnal Green Road
London E1 6GY