This dinner marks the end of an era because when we were in IKEA the next day, Scott realized that he didn't really like eating on purple plates anymore and decided to buy a set of off-white tableware. We had a juicy beef burger and shortbread for dessert that evening. For the patties: minced beef, chopped red onions, an egg. We used walnut bread which we got from a bakery in the basement of Takashimaya and dressed the burger with some lettuce, tomatoes, and cheddar.
Making a mess with his IKEA hotdog
In a world where rampant consumerism is the norm, choosing a frugal lifestyle can sometimes mean living as an outcast. Apart from being scrooges when it comes to leeks, Scott and I aren't in the habit of spending ridiculous amounts of money on eggs and coffee. Although we admittedly had brunch after our yoga class last Saturday and cannot resist the Torta de Garbanzo from Super Loco, which according to Scott is the shrödinger's cat of sandwiches.
Scotty and his Torta de Garbanzo
Here's what he had to say about the Torta de Garbanzo when we went there in early September:
On a weekend morning I often get a craving for what can only be described as one of the most transcendental sandwich experiences available on this little red dot or on the wider blue dot that surrounds it (Ie: it's a pretty damn good sandwich)
I've probably had six of these sandwiches in the last six months and here's the gripe. Whilst the ideal of this sandwich is excellence, the inconsistency of formation unsettles me. I've been served two different kinds of bread, three different kinds of chickpea fritter, pickles, no pickles, and any number of different sauces, pastes, and other assorted moistening agents. I never know what I'm gonna get. Whilst some variation is ok, valued even, the core constituents of the sandwich should be consistent. Ie: where the hell are my pickles?
Yesterday I made the happy stroll down to Super Loco to enjoy this public holiday weekend with an iced latte and the aforementioned sandwich. Ordered, I sit there anxious, nervous at what creation will come to me this time. The man comes. It looks reasonable. The plantain chips that usually come on the side have been replaced with tortilla chips; a letdown but I'm gonna concentrate on the sandwich. I lift the lid, the fritter is in its usual awkward shapes and the sauces look different to those previously encountered. But none of these things disturb me as much as the lack of damn pickles. Where are my pickles?! I call the man. I ask, "where are the pickles? This sandwich usually comes with pickles." "No, it don't," comes a response. "Yes it does," I've ordered this sandwich many times, it's written on the menu. "Please can you bring me some pickles," I ask. "Lemme go check." After a couple of minutes, he comes back with a little ramekin full of the missing pickles. A little bit of construction later and we're ready to go. Delicious.
So here's my bugbear. You guys have come up with one of the greatest sandwiches ever conceived. On its day, the bread is soft yet doesn't crumble; the textures within range from creamy, mushy, toothsome, and crunchy (my missing plantain chips); and the flavours spicy but not eye-watering, salivating but not salty, and with the fragrancy of a sexy Mexican woman who has just finished eating. Usually however you might get one or two of these things. I'm never sure whether I'm going to be happy or sad when the plate arrives. Sometimes I question if I should stop ordering the sandwich so it can live on in that perfect conceptual state and not experience the finality that opening the box reveals. TL;DR - please provide checklist to your sandwich artists: chickpea fritter, salad, pickled cactus, chimichurri mayo, plantain chips.
Anyway, instead of brunchin' at some hipster cafe, we usually roll around in bed for three hours. I wake up around 7AM regardless of my bedtime the previous night, so I usually wedge my head in Scott's armpit or breathe down the back of his neck/in his face (depending on his sleeping position), till he gets irritated with me and wakes up. Then we get out of bed to cook eggs.
EAT ME NOW!
Lentil stew is the perfect meal when you're on an unpaid internship abroad because it is cheap, easy, and filling. I ate this almost everyday when I was in Antwerp. The basic ingredients: onions, carrots, lentils, turmeric powder, tomato paste. I'd also throw in huge chunks of feta cheese because it was so cheap if you bought it from the Turkish supermarket. Sometimes I'd add lamb if I were feeling rich. Or faint and malnourished. Scott wasn't very impressed by this dish. Lol. Now we have a big bag of lentils sitting in the cupboard.
We were supposed to cook but I ended up working a bit late so Scott got Chinese takeout for dinner. Because Scott is like, tall and has a beard. Like, a man. I always assume he wants to eat a big piece of steak. Because, you know, he's tall and has a beard. Like, a man. But breaking the stereotype, he usually asks for braised tofu and fish porridge, which is very adorable. And duh some roast duck. Cuz, tall and beard. Man.
Eggs and avocados and whatever vegetables we could find in the fridge.
Eggs and avocados and whatever vegetables we could find in the fridge again. I used to hate buying avocados because I'd buy them and then have to wait a week for them to ripen. Only to cut them open and find that they've gone rogue. So annoying. Anyway, we were quite lucky with the bag we bought, but they started going a bit brown towards the end, which is why we mushed the last avocado. For some bizarre reason, Scott didn't try to pass it through the sieve. PSA - avocado with a spritz of lemon, salt and chilli flakes is the way to go.