Beef with oyster sauce – Tuk Tuk Noodle Bar

Beef with oyster sauce - Tuk Tuk Noodle Bar
Sauteed beef with mushroom, onion, bamboo shoot, carrot, and green onion. Set Menu A £11.80 per person
Tuk Tuk Noodle Bar, London ENGLAND

Ugh, another throw-away dish from Tuk Tuk. The beef quality was bad and the sauce was plain and boring. There was plenty to go around though!

The Shard building
The Shard building, London Bridge Quarter.

Cod and mushroom risotto – The Stockpot

Cod and mushroom risotto - The Stockpot
Arborio rice, cream, cheese, cod and mushrooms. £6.50
The Stockpot, London ENGLAND

Damn it! Unfortunately, The Stockpot failed to make a decent risotto; and I love risotto! This dish was WAY too salty and really fishy tasting (in a bad way). I liked the initial texture because it was creamy and the rice still had a nice firmness. But after a few minutes, the sauce seized up and quickly became too thick and gloppy. I’ve learned after-the-fact that this place is a local institution, but usually institutions are known for making at least something really well. All the dishes we tried were marginal and lackluster. 😦

St. James Park
Tulips and primroses at St. James Park. Here’s some beautiful flowers to brighten up this dreary food post.

Baked venison puff and sweet potato mushroom mei-si roll – Yauatcha

Baked venison puff and sweet potato mushroom mei-si roll - Yauatcha
Baked bun filled with venision. Deep fried sweet potato and mushroom covered in fine noodles. A Taste of Yauatcha menu £28.88 for 2 people
Yauatcha, London ENGLAND

This was probably our best London meal during this visit. We were on a tight budget so we didn’t go to any fancy restaurants this time around, but Yauatcha had a really good pre fixe for 2 people. It was a great way to taste a variety of their dim sum items without breaking the bank.

We received these two items first, and they were probably our favorites of the meal. The baked venison puff was SO delicious. The outer crust was warm and buttery, and the venison filling was so flavorful. The mei si roll was really fun to eat because of its crispy fried noodle shell. The sweet potato and mushroom filling was super tasty and I would have never thought to combine those two ingredients. NOMS!

Dipping sauces and pickled cucumbers - Yauatcha
Dipping sauces and pickled cucumbers. Complimentary

Elizabeth Tower with Big Ben

The Elizabeth Tower with Big Ben.

Tom khar kai soup – Tuk Tuk Noodle Bar

Tom khar kai soup - Tuk Tuk Noodle Bar
Coconut milk chicken soup with mushrooms. Set Menu A £11.80 per person
Tuk Tuk Noodle Bar, London ENGLAND

Wow, this set menu was a great deal! Unfortunately, the food was horrible. This soup was probably the highlight of the meal. Everything else that follow was poorly prepared and odd tasting. Hmm, I would say that maybe I’m just used to American Thai food but I’ve spent a month and a half traveling through Thailand so I have a decent idea of what authentic Thai food should taste like. And this wasn’t even close! 😦

Water - Tuk Tuk Noodle Bar
Water. Coplimentary

The Sherlock Holmes Pub
The Sherlock Holmes Pub. We were walking from Trafalgar Sqaure to the London Eye when we passed this establishment. I thought it looked charming so I snapped a quick pic.

Valdostana – Princi

Valdostana - Princi
Ham, cheese, artichoke and mushroom. £4.60
Princi, London ENGLAND

I didn’t know what a valdostana was, but it looked good and hearty in the display case so I thought I’d give it a try. Apparently, valdostana refers to a region in Italy and what I ordered was a torta valdostana. It was very tasty and rich. The inner layers of dough seemed a bit undercooked though. Maybe there was just too much butter in the dough. Look at me complaining about overly buttery crust, lol!

Americano - Princi
Americano. £4.60

Green Park
Green Park.

Chorizo hash browns – The Breakfast Club

Chorizo hash browns - The Breakfast Club
A BC original, chorizo, mushroom, home-style fried potatoes with peppers and fried eggs. £8.30
The Breakfast Club, London ENGLAND

OK, this was another little surprise and nothing like what I expected for a “hash brown”. It was good though. I think I was expecting for it to be more like an American-style hash with everything mixed together. I didn’t realize that the Spanish chorizo sausages would be separate along with the portobello mushrooms. I thought all the ingredients would be chopped up and cooked together. I will say that I enjoyed the sunny side up eggs; they were nicely cooked. Overall, the dish could have been seasoned better though.

Hahn/Cock statue
Hahn/Cock statue, 2013, Katherine Fritsch, Trafalgar Square.

Full English breakfast – Cote

Full English breakfast - Cote
Two free range eggs, bacon, pork sausage, tomato, mushrooms and toast. £7.50
Cote, London ENGLAND

This was our first breakfast in London this time around and I was not impressed. My eggs were overdone; I asked for over-medium. Is that an American thing and that’s why I can’t get it properly cooked anywhere else? If I knew, I would just order my eggs scrambled or poached. I also haven’t gotten used to English bacon and the weird squishy sausages they have here. I really don’t want to sound like I’m complaining because the food was decent, but after having eaten in Paris for the previous days this was a bit lackluster. 🙂

Wheat toast and butter - Cote
Wheat toast and butter.

Black Dog Campaign statue
Black Dog Campaign statue, Soho Square. Our hotel was in the West End so it was great to be near this quaint green space.

Bretonne galette – Breizh Cafe

Bretonne galette - Breizh Cafe
Sauteed mushrooms, gruyere cheese, scrambled egg, bacon, farmhouse creme fraiche from Bordier Creamery, espelette pepper. Galette made with organic buckwheat from Brittany and local eggs. 12,50€
Breizh Cafe, Paris FR

Mmm, I really loved these buckwheat galettes! They were nutty tasting and perfectly cooked and the ingredients were of high quality and delicious. They weren’t overly huge so we were actually able to finish them. To stay with the regional theme, we also ordered Bretonne beer. Perfect! 🙂

Biere blonde Lancelot - Breizh Cafe
Biere blonde Lancelot (Roc-St-Andre). La bout 33 cl 6€

Jardin du Luxembourg gardeners
Jardin du Luxembourg. These gardens are absolutely beautiful and immaculately kept. During our visit, there seemed to be an army of gardeners edging paths and cleaning brush. There were even these guys who were just pulling out dead flowers from all the flower planters, amazing!

Salade Comete – La Comete

Salade Comete - La Comete
Smoked salmon, mushrooms, tomato, haricot vert, cucumber, hard boiled egg. 9,90€
La Comete, Paris FR

We were searching for an early, small dinner but all the restaurants/cafes were packed. It was such a warm evening that we really wanted to sit outside at a sidewalk table to enjoy the weather and to people watch. Everybody else seemed to eat outside regardless so why not do the same? We walked around for quite some time before we ended up at Cafe La Comete.

Our initial idea of getting a small meal quickly ended when we realized the portions were quite large! The prices were, however, much more reasonable than our first meal in Paris (which I thought was slightly overpriced). The food here was good, but nothing special. I’d never seen a salad completely veiled in thin layer of smoked salmon though – that was new. Our waiter was really cool, a little rough around the edges but friendly and accommodating (and easy on the eyes). We haven’t really had to fumble with our French at all so far since everyone speaks English anyway.

French baguette - La Comete
French baguette. Complimentary

Place setting - La Comete
Place setting.

Jardin de l'Hotel-de-Sens
Jardin de l’Hotel-de-Sens, Le Marais. We were walking around the neighborhood near our hotel and passed by this cute garden with low hedges and beautiful flowers. I also love the red accents on the building’s dormers.

Roasted lamb leg – Goood Frikin’ Chicken

Roasted lamb leg - Goood Frikin' Chicken
Slices of garlic studded roasted choice lamb leg topped with mushroom sauce served with basmati rice pilaf, salad and bread. $15.95
Goood Frikin’ Chicken, San Francisco CA

Mmm, this was really good! The lamb was super tender and flavorful. The basmati rice pilaf was too salty and I could have done without it, but I do love their bread. The lamb even tasted great as leftovers the next day. 🙂

Side salad - Goood Frikin' Chicken
Side salad.

Wild mushroom and gorgonzola pizza – The Tropicale

Wild mushroom and gorgonzola pizza - The Tropicale
Roasted garlic, diced tomatoes and fresh thyme. $13
The Tropicale, Palm Springs CA

The flavor combinations in this pizza were to die for! The wild mushrooms were earthy and the gorgonzola was sharp and pungent. The roasted tomatoes and garlic were delicious and the crust was pretty good too. I generally prefer a thinner, more airy crust but this thicker crust was needed to handle all those great toppings.

Peking spicy beef – Jade Cafe

Peking spicy beef - Jade Cafe
With mushrooms and onions. $9
Jade Cafe, San Francisco CA

OK, the amount of oil in this dish is just plain disgusting! I can’t believe that a restaurant can think they can serve something like this. I got sick just trying this dish and had to throw the rest of it away. The beef was tough and flavorless and was more peppered than spicy. I will never order food from this restaurant ever again!