Friday, May 25, 2007

El Rincon Latino, Clapham (Colombian chorizo)

I went this Spanish restaurant for tapas the other day and lo and behold, they had a dish on the menu that consisted not only of sausage but also bread. Needless to say, I ordered it!

This dish is actually a Colombian style chorizo sausage and the bread is - I'm guessing - an arepa, a South American, corn-based flatbread.

The sausage was plainer in colour than a Spanish chorizo, and did not have that lovely oily, paprika taste. It was very dry and densely packed. The bread/pancake thing was quite disappointing. It actually had no discernable flavour whatsoever despite numerous attempts to eke some out of it. I genuinely could not taste anything when I ate it. This might have been due to the other tapas dishes being heavily flavoured but I doubt it. I think it is just an intentionally plain accompaniment. Strictly for the curious, I think.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Homemade: Debbie And Andrew's Sicilian pork

I haven't seen these sausages in my local supermarket but apparently you can get them at Morrisons. I actually found them by chance when I went to the 'Ideal Home' Exhibition in London earlier this year. You can find out more from the company website here

The first variety I tried was the Sicilian pork which , as the packet says, is flavoured with basil, garlic, sun-dried tomato and mozzarella. I served the sausages in simple hot dog buns with mustard and ketchup.

They were delicious. Intensely flavourful but well balanced. The mozzarella was hard to make out, to be honest, but the meat and the herbs worked really well. These are top quality sausages - possibly the best I've had at home and they go fantastically well with a hot dog bun (the plainer the bread the better, I think, as the sausage is so full of flavour).

Highly recommended.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Cafe Soho, Ingestre Place (return visit)

I had to hastily re-order the Soho Top 5 after a return visit to this place.

Cafe Soho remains one of the best sandwich shops in Soho, due mainly to its policy of using varied, fresh ingredients and having new specials every day. The last sausage sandwich I had from here was a lunchtime behemoth and strictly speaking should not have been used to compare with the other sandwiches I've reviewed, but this time I went for a simple sausage sandwich (on toasted brown bread with brown sauce).

Basically this is the best 'conventional' sausage sandwich I've had in Soho so far. It goes straight in at No.2 on the chart, bettered only by the Paul salami baguette.

Good quality granary-style brown bread which was quite light and airy, helping to absorb the sauce and avoid dripping. A good, herby sausage and brown sauce that does indeed taste like brown sauce. There's no great mystery to it - this cafe just chooses not to use the cheapest, lowest grade ingredients it can get away with and as a result it makes a really good sausage sarnie.

I won't give it the full 5 out of 5 because that would mean there is nothing that could be done better which isn't the case. Additional condiments, different bread, fatter, juicier sausages might all have made the sandwich even better. However, it's still the best so far.

4.5 out of 5. How a basic sausage sandwich should be done.