Wednesday, 3 February 2010

the new tapa

Garlic wafer-thin chicken
I don't get to eat proper brekkie during weekdays as it's difficult when you're rushing to work. It's always a case of 3 mugs of black coffee plus a piece of toast slathered with butter and marmite/peanut butter/Nutella, or a bowl of muesli with peanut butter and a dash of milk. Sometimes I don’t get to eat anything at all, which really sucks because since I've moved to London I've become a fan of proper breakfast (to be clear: by proper breakfast I do not mean a proper English fry up breakfast, but a decent breakfast that ticks all the boxes). I suppose this is one of the reasons why I actually enjoy waking up on weekends: because I know for a fact that I will have enough time to have proper morning food. With all the 'need-to-have's' in it. Like good carbs. And good protein.

Ironically I used to be a non-meaty breakfast fan and was into sugary puff cereals and muesli. So if you see me at the breakfast table eating rice that only means one thing: beef tapa is served. It's my favourite breakfast meat, the only breakfast meat I’d wake up early on a random day for. I love it so much I could probably eat it with garlic rice forever (well, maybe at least twice a week). In UP, when my friends and I are in breakfast mode, we'd get tapsilog takeaway from Rodic's. I'd always get the same thing: half portion garlic rice, two portions of beef, no egg, lots of garlic-chili vinegar. It doesn't matter if our breaths smell like vampire poison after (we do brush our teeth after), our satisfied tummies will always tell us that it was worth it.

I've not had tapa in... two years and a half. Last Saturday I woke up with a fever and a craving for good old comforting tapa. I have garlic, soy sauce, vinegar... and chicken slices. I knew it wouldn't work. Until I got really hungry and thought I'd better feed myself or ruin the weekend some more. I whacked them all in a roasting pan and the result was delicious. The bitter edges where the chicken was slightly burnt was just as good as the roasted garlic and gave the some decent smoky flavour. The bits that were perfectly cooked were sweet, salty and perfectly tangy. It did remind me a bit of eating my yaya’s tapa – perhaps because the chicken slices were so thin that cooking them in the oven longer than you should gave them a sort of chewy texture like beef tapa. Fair enough, it wasn't as good as the original tapa, but absolutely good enough for now. So until I find a decent Asian shop that sells good tapa in London, I'll stick to my chicken alternative.

1 comment:

  1. [...] My friend Ana posted a mouthwatering photo of her homemade tapa yesterday. As you may have read, beef tapa is my favourite breakfast meat and I’ve tried so hard to find good alternatives for it as I’ve never seen them sell [...]