Monday, February 19, 2007

London loves

First, Saturday lunch at Yauatcha, with some fusion-y dim sum (spinach wrapped prawn and water chestnut dumplings, the crispy 'box dumpling' which had prawn and date within and deep fried beancurd strips on the outside and served with plum sauce, some regular siu mai and a crispy duck roll), expensive tea which they don't refill (they can't really as they don't leave the er.. leaves in the pot) and some non-Chinese desserts (I had a coconut brioche burger with pistachio cream and cherry coulis as the filling). It's noisy and very blue, and they pack the tables together such that you can listen in on conversations and spy on their blueprints (we possibly sat next to the owner who was talking shop about opening Hakkasan in China). It has a minimalist concept, lots of whites and blues and a fishtank out front full of inedible fish.

15-17 Broadwick Street, W1

And what is reunion dinner without steamboat! It was quite an adventure...

Buying veg and fishballs in Chinatown
Trying desperately to find sliced pork at the Japanese store - only to have the last 3 trays swiped under our noses.
Making our way to my cousin's friend's place in Kingston only to learn that the trains were not running all the way there and getting on a replacement bus service from Wimbledon which takes some 40 minutes.
Buying more stuff from Sainsbury's and finally getting to our destination where we start rinsing and chopping and boiling water only to wait
and wait
and wait
because it's a slow cooker.
(I've never done steamboat in anything but a steamboat so this definitely was a first.)
Then giving up on the slow cooker and transferring stuff to the rice cooker, which did work.

It was a ton of food including: mussels, prawns, two kinds of fishballs, enoki mushrooms, shitake mushrooms, finely sliced fillet steak, salmon pieces, tunghoon, egg noodles, Chinese cabbage. And brownie after.

Sunday breakfast (CNY Day 1) was the ever popular nian gao (it's a sticky cake made from glutinous rice)!

The best way to eat nian gao - sliced up and fried in egg.

After a late breakfast, we made our way to the very grand British Museum

It has a fancy new roof.

Glorious ancient stuff.

And behold! Their reading room.

Lunch was some simple French food at Paul, which included some 20 minutes of queuing to get in.

Was it worth the wait?

Their bread sure was. It was crusty and to die for.

I ordered the Paillasson Campagnard (grated potatoes topped with mushrooms and dry cured ham)

Ching had the La Berrichonne (wholemeal bread, goat's cheese, ham, olive cream, tomato)

Covent Garden
29 Bedford Street
London WC2E 9ED

How was your new year?


Anonymous said...

Gongxifacai :) Glad you came for CNY!

I'm also glad I cleaned the kitchen worktop and stove properly- it looks very white in the pics!!

Have you tried the Darjeeling yet?

olduvai said...

yup the darjeeling's pretty good!

Thanks again for a great time.

umami said...

Oh this brings back memories of our steamboat dinners, especially during CNY, in the student halls. We always used rice cookers, and then afterwards we would all sit down and reminisce about TVB dramas.

by the way, my sister's name is ching too, small world huh? She lives in London but was in KL for the CNY.