June 7th, 2013
On Friday I went to watch The Tiger Lillies (described as a Brechtian Punk Cabaret) play in the Spiegeltent on the Southbank. I had a drink with Oli at the Anchor and we agreed to meet some friends at the Real Food Market, behind the Southbank theatre and cinema buildings, for refreshments before the show.
First of all, we tried the smoked salmon from Hansen and Lydersen.
They cold-smoke the finest Scottish salmon, using their Norwegian family cure, in a Stoke Newington brick kiln. They go to great pains to point out, that the fish is never frozen, vacuum packed or wrapped in plastic. Watch the video.
They served the salmon, thickly cut, on bread with a sour cream topping and a sprig of dill. This was without a doubt, the best smoked salmon I have ever had!
The Hansen & Lydersen stall was selling Austrian wine too. Their rosé was a little too fruity for my taste buds, but they had an excellent red, which I stupidly forgot to photograph (while drinking it) – I’ll have to go back another day to find out what it was…
Almost more delicious than the salmon, were the Yumi Takoyaki.
Takoyaki are little round octopus balls – first sold as street food in Osaka around 1935. The balls are cooked on a griddle containing little half spheres (in the picture above).
A batter is made with flour, dashi, eggs, bite sized pieces of octopus, chopped green onion, chopped, pickled red ginger and dried red shrimp. The batter is poured into the spheres and manipulated with chop sticks until the heat turns it into a soft ball.
The hot Takoyaki are topped with mayonnaise, bonito flakes and aonori. Yumi were also selling Chizu Yaki (cheese) and Pork Yaki. These were so good we ordered at least 3 bowls of them. I could taste octopus, cheese and pork, but there was also an amazing blend of the other ingredients, making them wonderfully savoury (umami). I’ll be keeping my eyes open for these and buying them again. I believe Yumi have a stall in the Brunswick Shopping Centre every Saturday.
The one last thing that I needed to eat, for complete restoration before the concert, were were the fantastic smelling Spanish meat balls (albondigas) on the Iberico Ham stall. They were made with chorizo, which gave them a hot rich smokey pimentón flavour.
The Tiger Lillies were miserable to the core (as expected) – they had the audience in raptures!