Tag Archives: Food

exmouth street market

16 Oct

london12.12pm veggie pret in exmouth market. 22.6C sunny monday 2017

quite warm today, and it seems brought on by a storm coming up the atlantic from the caribbean, dragging hot air along with it but because it is hitting ireland and scotland, it is missing south of england and that is why we are having these warm dry days. they all thought it is a repeat of the big storm of 89, 30 yrs ago, but it is not going to happen. it seems even that last storm of ’89 is not really a hurricane, in that it is just strong gusts of wind, that brought down the trees, and not a continuous 80mph (138km/hr)winds which is what a hurricane is. so far i had a look at the windspeeds in the north of scotland, colintraive, and it is about 50km/hr. and it seems the devastation 30 yrs ago is now all but recovered by nature with trees growing up to hide it all. which makes me kind of remain  equable when i read about nature’s destruction. nature just grows back again… it almost seems to be the way nature works… destroy and then rebuild, almost as if destruction is part of the plan.

it certainly clears away old growth and old trees that block the light from young growth. the old is not favoured by nature, or have you not noticed that? though some trees grow to a ripe old age but they are rare. actually some experts question why old women live so long, as they dont serve any purpose once they cannot breed. so it is a puzzle that one. but maybe they do serve a purpose , one that is important, and that we are not aware of. otherwise why have that old age trait lasted so long?

it used to be that we guess it is to impart age old wisdom… for eg, old she elephants remembering all the water holes in their migration and leading the herd to them in times of drought. so maybe old women have this function. and i can well imagine them imparting knowledge of plants and herbs and healing ways… as well as teaching the young generation how to cook, sew, mend, etc. but that kind of knowledge seems to be propagated just as well in books or written records… or maybe not, i doubt it is possible to get that kind of knowledge about edible mushrooms just from books…

i see the market stalls selling food outside this veggie pret that i am in, is busy now with people coming out for their lunch and the lunch crowds building up. there are quite a number of these stalls selling food, so this veggie pret will have competition. at first i had some trouble getting online with their wifi, even with the help of one of their staff, my chrome book wont allow me to download anything, saying it has no https and so is unsafe. but after fiddling with it, a page came up to ask me to register to the pret wifi, and when i did, it allowed me access and now here i am tapping this online. haha. i got a nice latte from the voucher i got when they opened. a very nice latte which i ask them to put in a porcelain cup , instead of a paper cup.



the view outside the window where i am sitting. that stall selling those meats look very good. they are on top of a bed of salad and rice. that latte is really special. i have not had one like that before. latte is half and half milk, but she foamed up the milk so that it is like a cappuchino but with lots more milk . so that u get a lot more drink in it. the thing i dont like about a cappucino is that it can be a lot of foam and not much liquid, so that you go away feeling you would like more coffee. this latte satisfies both. i could get to like it a lot.

and they have a tap right in front of the counter, to provide the free water. with cups nearby so dont even need to use your own bottle. very useful that .

added. 3.05pm home,  21C . its a very strange light we are having. like sepia tinted. that orangy yellow looking tint in old sepia photos, well that is what the light looks like now. must be a storm nearby to give that kind of clouds to tinge the atmosphere this colour. what is stranger is that there is no wind. none.

added. i read this news article in the dailymail online talking about it. it seems the storm coming up, has drawn air from the sahara and along with it, dust , which produces this strange tint. but where is the wind? why is it so still. no wind at all.

Digital StillCamera

a door that is not a door. haha. it was near the chapel st market, one of the streets running at right angles to it. a man who looked like he was some kind of mailor parcel courier was actually pressing the button on that call box when i pass by and i said to him, it is not a door, then a curtain parted in the glass windows on the right of us, and a hand beckoned him, and he went round the corner and i saw him enter some gates and proceed up a courtyard where the real entrance was.


more ‘free’ish hamburger

12 Oct

london 11.55am 17C ed diner victoria place thursday 2017

happened to be around and online here, and saw my voucher for a free burger at ed diner, and it expires 27oct so i thought well i might as well go for it. and found out that i can order any burger, so i ordered their double burger called big ed burger. 2x 6oz patties costing £10. well, i have to buy a drink and their cheapest was plain coffee at £3. so i might as well get the most expensive burger they got.

Digital StillCamera

its well done, rather than medium rare. its very filling of course so not something i would do on a regular basis.

chicken bargains

15 Sep

london 9.04pm 14.1C drizzling night friday 2017

couldn’t believe my luck … went to the local tesco to see if i can bag any bargains, and saw there were lots of whole chicken, usually selling for £1.99/kg expiring today. its not surprising these did not sell, because they are much more expensive than the promotion chickens that they are selling at 25% off. i suspect with so many other supermarkets selling it at prices lower than these chickens it is  bound to be no one is buying these. so i hung around knowing they will bound to be reduced. they all have reduced stickers saying £2.60, from usual price of about £3.70, which price i know no one will buy especially on their expiring date.

what did surprise me was them being reduced to 55p each. that is the lowest i have seen of whole chickens being sold at the end of the day… i thought those days of £1 chicken are gone, but these are even cheaper. so i bought 3. and he was reducing other meats too, so i bought pork, and mince beef and diced beef, all for about 55p each. really amazing prices. 

and these chickens are big, about 1.7kg. and there was only one other guy there , so no big scrum of buyers fighting for the goodies. it was quite late that he started the reductions. about 8pm… and this area has a poor 196bus connection after 8pm, so that might explain why there were no one around. and maybe on a friday night most people are wanting to party seeing it is the start of the weekend after all.

i shall be able to cook all the different ways of chicken that i like, roasting, and currying it, and blacksoya sauce it… a lot of people may be put off buying so many chickens, as they dont want to be eating chicken for weeks after, but if u cook them in all the different ways and then portion them up and freeze them, u will have loads of variety to enjoy for a month at least.

times like this is when i wish i got a big freezer, than can freeze the whole chicken and have lots of chicken to eat over the following months.

compare this price , 3 chickens for £1.66 to the two chickens i bought at full price, about £6.60 earlier this month. 


spending money is a simple pleasure in itself.

10 Sep

london 9.04am 15.2C sunny sunday 2017

i am unhappy not spending money

i think this is a very astute observation. i happened to come on it, in my wordpress reader, and other observations mentioned also strike to the heart of the matter of being thrifty and saving money.

yesterday i talked on simple pleasures, but if u think of it, spending money is a simple pleasure and a very powerful one as well. fortunately, the amount spent is not a strong factor … though it could be to some…it is highly possible that the pleasure in spending money is the huge amounts you spend, that might be the big factor in liking that pleasure…  but even then, small amounts can ride up to a huge outlay over time. some might even think if they dont spend money they are not living a good life. that they are missing out on something. that they are depriving themselves of life experience because they are not spending money.

in the end, the best advise to save money is dont buy anything… impossible to follow of course, so the more practical advise is spend less than you earn. and you can play it out over any time span that u like. a month, a year, 10yrs… as long as when u tote it up, u spend less than you earn. but important that u feel happy about it, otherwise it becomes too much like hell.

looking back on my life i realise i have been adjusting this spending as a pleasure by incorporating it to buying bargain foods. so my urge to spend is nicely fulfilled but i get double pleasure knowing i get really good value for what i buy and at much reduced prices, and also get the simple pleasure of enjoying eating what i bought. so win-win-win all round.

another way of saving money is to make it yourself. but i realise it does not work for me. for eg, i used to bake bread, but it still means u got to buy the ingredients, than the effort of making it and the cost of baking it in the oven using electricity/gas. unless you enjoy the making of it for its own sake, i find it is too much bother and does not save much… when the supermarkets reduce their bread to so little , 10p, 5p, for the commercial breads, and 25p for the instore baked ones.

and i find i dont want to eat so much bread anymore. its the same with cakes, i just find i dont want to eat them anymore… and at a stroke i get rid of the conundrum of whether to bake them or buy them. 



colindale food hall back again

24 Jul

london 10.09pm 16.5C damp monday 2017

i read this just now, about the opening of a food hall in colindale. there used to be one long ago, run along the lines of food halls in s.e.asia. where hawkers sell all kinds of food and you can mix and match cuisine from all the s.e.asian and chinese countries… that food hall closed long ago, but now it seems this one has risen to take its place. and quite a big one too. funny that no one reported it when it opened on 10.july. this is the first report i read of it. and their 20% discount has just ended today. i think a lot of us would be interested in going there. 


perhaps their website should tell us how to get there. i mean what buses go there from the colindale tube station? and that the station is on the edgeware branch of the northern line. and in zone 4. but for us going by public transport, it willbe useful toknow what buses go there. added. there is a bus from kingsbury , jubilee line to stanmore.

i may not have heard of it, but it seems the locals know of it. and it has been full up ever since it opened it seems. so maybe that is why it is not publicised so much. it has enough business allready.

added 25.7.17. it seems tomorrow 26.7.17 is the official opening. the previous 2 wks was the soft opening. 

someone posted a review of it. hope it wont be too pricey. portions not very big. a lot of nostalgia for oriental city, the first food hall there and i too have nice memories of it, because prices then were low. but it was 9 yrs ago. it just wont be the same. in those days, even chinatown was cheap. it might be useful for locals who live near there so there is no need to make the long journey into the centre to chinatown for it. and as they said, other cuisines, are also available in there. but maybe not that attractive for us who live far away to make that special journey to go there for it.



13 Jul

london 6.33pm sunny 22.2C thursday 2017

there was rain, it came yesterday, though i did not really notice it, only knew it came because the ground was wet. my part of london seem to have got a small amount, even though they are forecasting heavy rain. perhaps  it is heavy in other places. well   i consider the rain as good, as it brought down the temp to the low 20s instead of the high 20s. so now we got ideal weather, sunny and yet 22C and so feels very pleasant. but today it was dry. no rain where i am.

yesterday i spent it going to chinatown, hoping to buy some more of the sardines that they have reduced to 20p, but it was all gone, with the price reverting to its normal price of £1.10. such a high price for what is essentially ordinary sardines. used to be sardines were the poor man’s fish… it is imported from china which might explain the high price. usually in supermarkets they are 40p. i wonder who buys these at those high normal price. perhaps we shall again get them all reduced when this batch gets to its sell by date. haha.

then i went to the virgin media lounge and enjoyed the place. it is a very nice place to while away the time… though it is interesting that they wont allow people to bring in their own food to eat there.

the other day two ladies did that, they bought salad from some takeaway and were told by the helper not to do so because there might be people allergic to what they were eating. if that is the case, surely all restaurants will have to go out of business for fear that someone might be allergic to something they cook.

we hear of airlines not serving peanuts and even asking people not to eat peanuts because it seems people with peanut allergy can get it just from sniffing the peanut in the air in the plane. is air in the plane recirculated?  but if air in restaurants is not circulated and so refreshed regularly, than that also might apply to the air in that lounge and so if restaurants can serve eaters, i dont see why we cannot eat the food we bring in.

and what about biscuits that they provide freely, and coffee and tea, what about people allergic to those. hey? i think they dont want people eating the food they bring , because of the smell, which might offend others. and it is difficult to specify what food can be eaten if smell is the one they want to avoid. some foods dont smell , the two ladies food did not smell…they were eating salads, but perhaps the dressing smelt, who knows. my sense of smell is not as sensitive as others. but how to make a blanket rule against smelly foods. easier to just say health and safety and so no food.

talking of peanut allergy, i wonder how come malaysian restaurants can serve peanut satay sauce, if just sniffing the air can bring on a peanut allergy. do they have to warn off all peanut allergy sufferers , dont come in if u have it, or u too will die. but they are allowed to serve peanut based foods. so that might mean the air in a restaurant on land is circulated much more than in the plane. which must make u wonder what else you are breathing in that air in the plane throughout those hours you are in it. 

how those people can survive living in this earth with that kind  of sensitivity to peanut is a mystery to me.

i am surprised that the virgin lounge do not have a big sign telling people not to bring in peanuts to eat inside there. that would certainly be in keeping with their theme of it being like a cabin in the plane. hahah.

that day, i saw a guy eating some thing… a sandwich in the lounge and he was not told off. so perhaps it depands on whether the helpers got out of the wrong side of the bed that day. haha. but it reinforce to me that u can do most things as long as u are very discreet about it and do it without anyone noticing. 



i am glad there is no rioting in london on this labour day

1 May

london 7.08pm 11C cloudy sun. bank holiday monday 2017

rioting in paris, and elsewhere in the world. they still call it labour day, unlike here where they may have realised it is a provocation to disorder and rioting so they call it early spring day and remove all connections to labour day. i think the authorities have refused all requests for marches on this day, because there are none.  edited. it looks like i am wrong about that, there are demonstrations, but they went off peacefully. and why shouldn’t they be peaceful. 

 maybe just as well, if what we see in paris today is taken as an excuse by those who wish to make trouble to make it happen. throwing molotov cocktails is really not on. and i dont care what their excuse is. 

i think people have to accept we got a capitalist form of economy… and those with little to no skills will always be at the bottom of the pile. society can try to take measures to alleviate their condition, but we all realise that if u make it too cosy, you will take away the incentive to better themselves. after all why work if u can get it given to you anyway. society does require workers to do the menial work. in the past we used slaves. now maybe we still use them, but we call them by a different name.

but that is what life is like in this early part of the 21st century. most of us like the system. we can go about our lives without fear of being killed and the laws are upheld. i like the system i dont mind telling you. it gives me a peaceful life. for those who say it is an unfair system, i would like to ask them what they hope to replace it with. is any system ever fair? even nature is unfair. why should the innocent herbivores be food for the carnivores?  its not fair is it? but enough of this heavy thinking. the world is what it is. 

i was wondering what to eat for dinner. there dont seem to be any ready made food left to eat. there are two frozen fish in the freezer. and that is all the uncooked meat left in there. at least any that belongs to me. there are mysterious packages that belong to simon. i have eaten everything else, it seems. so i thought i shall do a quick dish. microwave the two fish slices, (cover the fish with a lid so that it gets steamed a bit). that should cook them.

then in a wok, fry some ginger, and onions and pour over it a can of tomatoes, put in some chilli powder and some dried herbs, and a spoonful of malt vinegar and a bit of suger and presto i have a hot, sour, and sweet tomato sauce . thickened with a bit of cornflour and there u are. almost instant sauce. pour over the fish and eat with left over fried rice warmed up in the microwave. quite delicious even though i say it so myself. i arranged them all in the trolley and asked simon to wheel it into the  lounge for me. along with a mug of tea that i have heated up in the microwave.

it really is great to have a freezer where u can store frozen meat or fish. but it looks like i need to do a big shop soon, to replenish it.