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march remixed

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Last Monday evening we met our friend Nate who was over from Port Townsend to visit his mother in London. We had several pints at the Lamb & Flag and Nate mentioned he knew of a place for curry in Brick Lane, so we headed East. I'd never been to Brick Lane before (although I have visited the surrounding area several times). It has a large Asian population, but not as large as Southall. A man stood outside every restauraunt trying to draw punters in. We entered Aladin and what immediately struck me was the lack of Indians eating. I have a personal policy that if none of the local people eat at a certain restaurant, don't go in. In this instance though I went in. The starter was good, the main course sub-standard. I got sick the next day (as did Macsen), although whether this was from the curry or the pints of beer I'm not sure. In any case I'll probably stick to Southall for curry from now on. Now I'm dreaming of tinda gosht (lamb and pumpkin curry) from Gifto's Lahore Karahi.

Later in the week we again met up with Nate, his mother, and her boyfriend James in Soho. After eight years I had never met his mother before so it was a pleasure to finally meet her. We had a few pints in the standing-room only pub and then went for Italian at a place we vaugely knew of, but it turned out to be closed for refurbishment. A few doors down was another Italian. It looked like your typical slightly dated fare, but it seemed decent. As we were about pay the bill we noticed they included a cover charge on top of the service charge. The restaurant was stuck in more of a time warp than we realized. We complained at which the waiter aggressively pointed out on the menu in a tiny typeface that the cover was for olives, bread, napkins, water, wear on the chairs, and air usage. We payed the cover in the end, but as we were leaving and still bristling from the waiter's behaviour I advised the two Japanese businessmen looking at the menu outside, "I wouldn't recommend it!" They laughed and moved on.

Yauatcha Girls

After dinner we stopped for patisserie and tea at Yauatcha. The teahouse has changed quite a bit in the year since we've been. There is now a black partition of shelves separating the patisserie counter from the rest of the room and they've lowered the lighting dramatically. They also serve dim sum upstairs now. My guess is that after they received their michelin star they needed more capacity as the downstairs doesn't seat many people. You can see a 360° virtual tour of how the restauraunt looks now here. Max said that when he went downstairs he saw David Beckham tucking into dim sum.

Nate is a baker so he could fully appreciate the hard work that goes into Yauatcha's pastries. He ordered two and especially loved the jade ganache with absinthe. After his pastries, jasmine tea, and observing the Yauatcha waitresses in their wispy ass-accentuating dresses he appeared to be in bliss.

Finally on Friday evening we went out with our friends Zoë and Andy for Chinese.

Desktop & Music:

M.I.A. - Arular

I loved the mash-ups of M.I.A.'s album on Piracy Funds Terrorism so it's great to hear them on their own.


Channel 4: Torture Season and Casanova

Is Torture A Good Idea?, The Guantanamo Guidebook, The Dirty Business, and America’s Brutal Prisons

(We borrowed a PVR to record the documentaries, but only managed to get The Guantanamo Guidebook

and America's Brutal Prisons. Will upload them if anyone is interested.)

I also enjoyed Rose Byrne being told pervy stories by Peter O'Toole in Casanova</a>. David Tennet, Nina Sosanya, Naomi Bentley, and Laura Fraser were extra eye candy. The programme itself was enjoyable, even if the sex scenes were ridiculously timid for something about Giacomo Casanova. The stylized costuming and sets were stunning.


I sadly have had no time to read this month. When I did get the chance I read through the huge stack of newspapers

(The Sunday Times, Guardian/Observer, Independant) and magazines that have been building up in my bedroom.

Food & Drink:

rooibos tea in the mug from somabrak ... trofie pasta with lemon, rocket, and goat's cheese

rocket salad with roasted butternut squash, prosciutto, arradoy (french basque country cheese), mozzarella, olive oil, and balsamic.

(so.fucking.good. seriously one of the best dishes ever.)

We cooked a five-course birthday meal for Macsen's mother. Early morning we caught the train/tube to Borough Market to pick up some fresh fish and other ingredients and were back home within a few hours. It's quicker than trying to park at our local supermarket. We put out a quick pre-starter of duck and venison sauscisson, six day sourdough bread, and olives. Then we started on the pan-fried scallops with pancetta and chestnut butter (stolen from the Connaught menu). It tasted right on, but the chestnut butter wasn't quite the same consistancy. We have loads of chestnuts left so we'll trying experimenting more. The main dish was Merluza A La Gallega, a favorite Spanish dish of ours (made with barramundi this time as hake wasn't available). Cheese was roquefort so ripe it had to be peeled from the paper, brie, a beautiful slice of comté, and feta. Dessert was homemade mango ice cream that I made earlier in the day.. it was my personal favorite part of the meal. ;)

merluza a la gallega ... mango ice cream


Most notable events:

Birthdays and seeing people. My introverted nature is rebelling, need time to `hermitize' this month.
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On April 7th, 2005 01:14 am (UTC), nomi replied:
those dishes are so easy to make. I feel almost guilty, like I'm passing them off as something difficult. ;) as long as you can access the ingredients it's 15-30 mins work for any of those. maybe I will start a recipe journal sometime, or start posting recipes here occassionally.

that community looks to be right down my alley. joined.

a very very happy birthday to you! :)
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On April 6th, 2005 08:39 pm (UTC), heuteistmeintag commented:
I have a personal policy that if none of the local people eat at a certain restaurant, don't go in.

Same here.


I walked by Yauatcha after dinner on New Year's Day. At firt it just looked really familiar, then after a few seconds I remembered your entry. Looked neat. Have to go next time I'm in town...maybe October.
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On April 7th, 2005 01:27 am (UTC), nomi replied:
That's what I love about Southall, there's still restaurants there that have never had anyone but locals in them. Usually those places are very friendly and happy to see you and shower you with free gifts of food and drink, and I'm always happy to pass on the good word to friends. Although we still need to visit our Sikh friends there, I'll bet they know all of the really good places.

Yauatcha's definitely worth checking out. I'm sure the dim sum still doesn't compare to what you can get in China or Taiwan, but they tasted great to me. The French/Asian fusion pastries are out of this world, I don't think there's anything comparable.
— On April 7th, 2005 05:06 am (UTC), heuteistmeintag posted a reply · Expand
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On April 6th, 2005 09:23 pm (UTC), crankmagnet76 commented:
I got really sick after eating at Aladin, too, it wasn't booze...

Hope to bump into you tomorrow! :)
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On April 7th, 2005 01:33 am (UTC), nomi replied:
M. kept trying to convince me it was the booze, but I know the difference between booze-ill and dodgy-curry-ill. ;) It just tasted all wrong when I was eating it, but I think I'm losing my American-ness because I didn't want to make a fuss.

I hope to see you tomorrow, too! I'm so excited about this concert. I hope it lives up to expectations. :)
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On April 6th, 2005 10:59 pm (UTC), somabrak commented:
That tea looks swell in that mug. :)

I envy everything you eat! Or I envy you for eating everything that you do! It's all so pretty and delicious-looking.
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On April 7th, 2005 01:37 am (UTC), nomi replied:
That mug is one of the few possessions I brought over with me from America. It's well-travelled and loved. :)

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On April 6th, 2005 11:49 pm (UTC), dawaioser commented:
I'm starving now...after those gorgeous pictures. YUMMY!
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On April 7th, 2005 01:43 am (UTC), nomi replied:
I commented on Nick's post, but big congratulations to you both,
you make a wonderful couple! :)
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On April 7th, 2005 12:58 am (UTC), celie commented:
I know what you mean about Brick Lane. I've eaten there loads, and although some are really okay, the overall standard is low and fairly cheap. Unfortunately, and typically, I never remember their names. Those men outside are also annoying... but I do enjoy the energy and vibe of the place, sometimes.
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On April 7th, 2005 01:50 am (UTC), nomi replied:
I don't have an overwhelming urge to return to Brick Lane any time soon. I can see why people who live in East London go there since Southall is quite the trek for them, but if that's the standard of food you get I'd almost think the trek West would be worth it.

It might be interesting to return during Diwali or something. I admit I didn't look around very much, I was too busy avoiding eye contact with the door men. :)
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On April 7th, 2005 02:39 am (UTC), ginamoog commented:
Man, all that food looks great.

I saw a MIA video on late at night the other week. Hubby was a bit shocked about the XL recordings part. But I can appreciate her a bit:)
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On April 13th, 2005 01:00 am (UTC), nomi replied:
I love MIA, it's been awhile since a new artist has made me want to shake my booty.
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On April 7th, 2005 01:08 pm (UTC), opalfruit commented:
Did you enjoy Brick Lane? I live nearby and have been there several times but I think it is overpriced and disappointing... which is a real shame.
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On April 13th, 2005 01:03 am (UTC), nomi replied:
Disappointing for me, definitely.. I didn't have much of a chance to look around, but I can't say I saw much that made me want to return. Maybe if I didn't live so close to Southall I would have reason to. It is a shame, from what I've heard it used to be much better and less tourist-ridden.
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On April 7th, 2005 02:23 pm (UTC), silver_notebook commented:
All looks delicious; the Merluza A La Gallega especially. Having seen this post, I so want to go to Yauatcha now, I loved dim sum at Hakkasan, though luxy resaurants have been spare on my agenda of late.

As for the Brick Lane 'Indians' most of them are Bangladeshi, and serve food most hospitable, non-impoverished, Bangladeshis would be embarrassed by (I was there for Christmas). Out there you get the hugest, most delicious, prawns in light, coconut curry. A few of the Brick Lane restaurants used to be OK years ago, but now they're like a rite of passage stop for tourists and those too full of beer to care. The salt beef and bagel bars at the top of the street can't be faulted though: best salt beef in town. And if you're in that area again, I imagine that you'd like Columbia Road flower market on a Sunday - I'm sure your camera could do it much justice.
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On April 7th, 2005 05:01 pm (UTC), sarahemily11 commented:
ohmigod. i am so hungry now. i haven't seen such an appetizing display since nice, france. yum!
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On April 8th, 2005 05:37 am (UTC), (Anonymous) commented:
Better for curry
Hi Naomi,

Been reading your LJ for a while and love the food discussions and your pictures. I'm also a big fan of your mixes (The Girl Is Ill especially). I used to live near Borough Market (I'm now in Wellington, NZ) so know exactly how yummy that place is. Next time you're up there, you might want to try one of the places nearby for an excellent curry - I always used to get my takeout from there. They're called Simply Indian (http://www.london-se1.co.uk/restaurants/view.php?venueid=226) and reside on Tabard Street.

One of the best features is that you can get a jug of ale from the lovely Royal Oak (http://www.london-se1.co.uk/restaurants/view.php?venueid=22) pub, just over the road (it does Harveys (http://www.harveys.org.uk/) from Lewes, in Sussex), and bring it with you to Simply Indian, to help wash down the food. Mmmm... good job I'll be home in June to sample their wares again. I'm looking forward to checking out Yauatcha too - don't think it was open last time I was back...


Andrew (http://www.flickr.com/photos/ecclestone/)
On April 8th, 2005 05:39 am (UTC), (Anonymous) replied:
Re: Better for curry
Sorry if kludgy HTML showed up in the comment I just made - thought I'd coded it right... :-(
— On April 22nd, 2005 11:30 am (UTC), nomi replied, “Re: Better for curry” · Expand
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On April 8th, 2005 08:01 pm (UTC), langerdan commented:
It's great that you can take pictures of girls backsides without getting arrested. I know that i couldn't do it i'd be too self-conscious
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On April 22nd, 2005 11:35 am (UTC), nomi replied:
Ah, I'm quick and have a small camera. ;)
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On April 11th, 2005 03:03 am (UTC), sebastian commented:
i hope everything's alright . let me know if you need to talk, my aim screenname is in my profile .
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On April 13th, 2005 01:08 am (UTC), nomi replied:
I'm ok, thank you.. but I'm looking forward to this month being over.
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On April 12th, 2005 03:12 pm (UTC), brella commented:
hee hee
We made this a few weeks ago too: trofie pasta with lemon, rocket, and goat's cheese !!
It was in the Waitrose magazine

it was quite yummy
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On April 13th, 2005 12:56 am (UTC), nomi replied:
Re: hee hee
Yes! They have some decent recipes in there.

the trofie pasta was soooo good.. tho the best bits were the burnt cheese left on the pan.

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On April 14th, 2005 02:27 am (UTC), (Anonymous) commented:
Article on shopping at Borough Market
Saw this in passing and thought you might like it...


[User Picture]
On April 22nd, 2005 11:38 am (UTC), nomi replied:
Re: Article on shopping at Borough Market
Thank you! Is this Andrew again, or another "A"?

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