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Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Otto » Mon Jul 31, 2006 8:06 am

I guess I must finally put it out in the open that I am not a foodie, though I try to be. I do like cooking but I suck at it. I do like going to restaurants that make genuinely great stuff, but I never the same kicks out of it that I get out of a simple chunk of bloody meat and a bottle of bloody good red wine.

But now I've gone lower than before. I've started eating fast-food. Here are my excuses: I tend to work quite late and I try to get university studies done at the same time. Also I tend to go for long runs in the evenings. All this leaves me with very little time for anything else, so I don't want to spend hours cooking.

Therefore I've been very happy that we have a fine fast food joint here: Namaskaar. They make Indian food and pretty damn good food at that! Especially when I go in the evening, the food has been simmering for most of the day and is well marinated, fairly spicy - and it tastes Indian!

There. I feel much better having confessed my sins.

-Otto-
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Gary Barlettano

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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Gary Barlettano » Mon Jul 31, 2006 10:47 am

Indian fast food, eh? Guess that kind of makes you a naan-conformist.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Otto » Mon Jul 31, 2006 10:53 am

Gary Barlettano wrote:Indian fast food, eh? Guess that kind of makes you a naan-conformist.


LOL!! :)
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Ian Sutton » Mon Jul 31, 2006 1:22 pm

Gary Barlettano wrote:Indian fast food, eh? Guess that kind of makes you a naan-conformist.

Korma here and say that :twisted:

On subject, this is one of the issues I've encountered over the years with my lifestyle - in specific relation to work.

I've generally been on client site, working away from homes and staying in hotels. In the early days this was fun I suppose, with a big group of us, trying out the local restaurants 2-3 nights a week and getting room service or a bar snack the rest of the time. At weekends, it was never worth getting real food in, as it would go off by the next weekend, so too many ready-prepared meals and take-aways ensued. After a year and a half of this I started getting very frustrated. I even asked a friend if I could come round to his flat and cook a meal for mutual friends. It was great fun. Now I've rediscovered my sense of fun and adventure in the kitchen. If anything, what I need to remember is how to do quick and easy lighter food. From a nice sandwich, to cheese/beans on toast - even jacket potatoes.

Perhaps we should have a food 101 month, where we post our quick and easy recipes for people "on the go". We could call it "Otto's Kitchen" :)

regards

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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Gary Barlettano » Mon Jul 31, 2006 3:00 pm

Ian Sutton wrote:Korma here and say that :twisted:


To borrow from Boy George, I guess this means you enjoy a korma, korma, korma, korma, korma meal, Ian.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Ian Sutton » Mon Jul 31, 2006 3:37 pm

Gary Barlettano wrote:
Ian Sutton wrote:Korma here and say that :twisted:


To borrow from Boy George, I guess this means you enjoy a korma, korma, korma, korma, korma meal, Ian.

No, hate the dish - but it's a fantastic dish for punning with. As it happens we're ordering in tonight. Chicken Malayan (mild, with pineapple) for Michelle and Chicken and Mushroom Balti for me. Will wash it down with the remainder of the bottle of Best's Great Western Cabernet Sauvignon 1998, which was excellent last night ... in fact here's the TN:

regards

Ian

Decanted briefly before drinking, which was a good move as there's a fair degree of sediment thrown.

The garnet colour is only slightly giving way to a touch of red and only showing a fraction of age at the edge. The nose is quite spicy and there's a touch of red fruit along with a little blackcurrant, as well as some smokiness/tobacco especially noticeable after a swirl. A classy start.

On the palate fruit is still very fresh (supported no doubt by the lively acidity). The spiciness is less prominant than on the nose. The acidity carries the fruit through the finish and there's still some fine-grained tannins sitting in the background. Not exceptionally complex, but what is there is nicely balanced.

Drinking very nicely now, but should be more room for further development without the immediate risk of losing the juiciness of the fruit. Definitely not a blockbuster wine, but really quite a classy one, maturing well. Should last 4-5 years at least and possibly a while beyond that, but for those that like a fair dose of primary fruit, it's fine to drink now.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by ChefCarey » Mon Jul 31, 2006 3:52 pm

Otto Nieminen wrote:I guess I must finally put it out in the open that I am not a foodie, though I try to be. I do like cooking but I suck at it. I do like going to restaurants that make genuinely great stuff, but I never the same kicks out of it that I get out of a simple chunk of bloody meat and a bottle of bloody good red wine.

But now I've gone lower than before. I've started eating fast-food. Here are my excuses: I tend to work quite late and I try to get university studies done at the same time. Also I tend to go for long runs in the evenings. All this leaves me with very little time for anything else, so I don't want to spend hours cooking.

Therefore I've been very happy that we have a fine fast food joint here: Namaskaar. They make Indian food and pretty damn good food at that! Especially when I go in the evening, the food has been simmering for most of the day and is well marinated, fairly spicy - and it tastes Indian!

There. I feel much better having confessed my sins.

-Otto-


Notice you did not apologize for the strange masochistic rite called "running." Opting for the quick Fixx.

You take the time to ritually abuse all your joints from the pelvis down and yet can't find time for a quick saute??!! For shame!
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Robin Garr » Mon Jul 31, 2006 4:08 pm

Gary Barlettano wrote:Indian fast food, eh? Guess that kind of makes you a naan-conformist.


Oh, you're just trying to curry favor with him.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Howard » Mon Jul 31, 2006 11:50 pm

Oh, you're just trying to curry favor with him.


Ghee that was terrible, Robin.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Robin Garr » Tue Aug 01, 2006 12:29 am

Howard wrote:Ghee that was terrible, Robin.


My puns used to be even worse, but they've been cumin along with practice. :)
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Howard » Tue Aug 01, 2006 2:34 am

My puns used to be even worse, but they've been cumin along with practice.


I know what you mean. I used to trade puns with some friends of mine. I'd say, " you're a dal" and both coriander mom would blush because they wouldn't know which one I was speaking to.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Stuart Yaniger » Tue Aug 01, 2006 9:07 am

You're killin' me. Up Napa way, there's almost no Indian food of any sort, much less Indian fast food.

I'd love to be able to grab a dosa for lunch.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Paul B. » Tue Aug 01, 2006 11:20 am

Stuart Yaniger wrote:I'd love to be able to grab a dosa for lunch.

A dosa what? I've been wanting to do the same with Cynthiana once in a while, but they just don't travel this way.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Mike Conner » Wed Aug 02, 2006 1:52 am

SY:

Geez, even here in the redneck south, we've got one really good Indian restaurant that does buffet for lunch, and another that is decent (closer to campus).

Which reminds me... gotta make an excuse to be around the better place for lunch soon.

Mike


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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by James Roscoe » Wed Aug 02, 2006 8:36 am

Maybe Ian can confirm this, but I was watching some cable show that claimed the number one fast food in the UK was Indian. It seems that some genius Indian immigrant figured out a way to allow his customers to get it quick and hot all at a reasonable price. It looked like a fascinating set-up on TV. Again, I will allow Ian or some other UK forumite to confirm or deny this "fact". I am just reporting what I saw and heard reported. AOf course if it was on TV, it had to be true, right? It was probably CNN or Fox.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Stuart Yaniger » Wed Aug 02, 2006 9:29 am

Mike Conner wrote:SY:

Geez, even here in the redneck south, we've got one really good Indian restaurant that does buffet for lunch, and another that is decent (closer to campus).


Napa apparently has a law that all restaurants must be Cal-Ital. No room for fast food other than Big Chains (Mickey Dee, Jack in the Crack...).
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by James Roscoe » Wed Aug 02, 2006 2:31 pm

Stuart Yaniger wrote:
Mike Conner wrote:SY:

Geez, even here in the redneck south, we've got one really good Indian restaurant that does buffet for lunch, and another that is decent (closer to campus).


Napa apparently has a law that all restaurants must be Cal-Ital. No room for fast food other than Big Chains (Mickey Dee, Jack in the Crack...).


I know Mickey Dees aka Chez Macs (It sounds so much more upscale if you use a pseupo French name.), but what the h*** is Jack in the Crack? Obviously there are fine dining establishments on the Left coast that haven't made it to DC. I also see Sonic commercials , but have never seen the chain. Somehow I don't think I'm missing much on either score.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Stuart Yaniger » Wed Aug 02, 2006 2:38 pm

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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Ian Sutton » Wed Aug 02, 2006 3:23 pm

James Roscoe wrote:Maybe Ian can confirm this, but I was watching some cable show that claimed the number one fast food in the UK was Indian. It seems that some genius Indian immigrant figured out a way to allow his customers to get it quick and hot all at a reasonable price. It looked like a fascinating set-up on TV. Again, I will allow Ian or some other UK forumite to confirm or deny this "fact". I am just reporting what I saw and heard reported. AOf course if it was on TV, it had to be true, right? It was probably CNN or Fox.

Depends how you define fast food, but Indian is certainly up there with Pizza and Chinese for volume of takeaways and one of the most popular cheap dine-in styles (especially for the men after a few beers :roll: ).
On that basis, yes probably the market leader.

I think the basis of Indian food at source is cheap and hot, so the transformation to UK wasn't particularly innovative. We do have a somewhat anglicised style though, with chicken and Lamb used much more widely than the predominantly more vegetarian origins of the dishes and less use of staples such as daal. On top of that we now have further UK trends taking the food on a divergent path to it's roots (e.g. The "Balti" houses from around my home city Birmingham, serving cheap curries and Naan breads the size of the formica top tables). Also now a trend towards upmarket restaurants serving modern variants.

Finally, though universally referred to as Indian food, most Indian restaurants in UK are run by ex Pakistani's and Bangladeshi's.

regards

Ian

p.s. don't ever worry about spelling dishes wrong, as there are many variants used and it seems the pronounciation is more important than a prescribed way to spell each dish (e.g Kurma/Korma).
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Jenise » Wed Aug 02, 2006 3:25 pm

James Roscoe wrote:Maybe Ian can confirm this, but I was watching some cable show that claimed the number one fast food in the UK was Indian. It seems that some genius Indian immigrant figured out a way to allow his customers to get it quick and hot all at a reasonable price. It looked like a fascinating set-up on TV. Again, I will allow Ian or some other UK forumite to confirm or deny this "fact". I am just reporting what I saw and heard reported. AOf course if it was on TV, it had to be true, right? It was probably CNN or Fox.


I think we need to argue the term "fast food", because a take-out only restaurant (as many Indian joints in the UK are) is a world apart from the the cheaply made, dumbed down crap that Americans know as as fast food. But that said, when I lived there, Indian (and Fish & Chips) was to the U.K. what pizza and Chinese are to America. It was what you brought home when you didn't feel like cooking.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by James Roscoe » Wed Aug 02, 2006 4:26 pm

Stuart Yaniger wrote:Oh, the horror, the horror.


Quite frankly, If it isn't in the northeast it isn't in the bigtime. You Californians are sooo exclusive.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by James Roscoe » Wed Aug 02, 2006 4:35 pm

Jenise wrote:I think we need to argue the term "fast food", because a take-out only restaurant (as many Indian joints in the UK are) is a world apart from the the cheaply made, dumbed down crap that Americans know as as fast food. But that said, when I lived there, Indian (and Fish & Chips) was to the U.K. what pizza and Chinese are to America. It was what you brought home when you didn't feel like cooking.


I guess the issue of "take-out" versus "fast food" was not something I considered. I wish I had paid more attention to the show. I think it was the Food Channel and I think they described it as a fast food place. If I see the show again (entirely likely on cable) I will try to get more info and Ian can let us know if it's a pack of lies.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by Ian Sutton » Wed Aug 02, 2006 5:28 pm

James Roscoe wrote:
Jenise wrote:I think we need to argue the term "fast food", because a take-out only restaurant (as many Indian joints in the UK are) is a world apart from the the cheaply made, dumbed down crap that Americans know as as fast food. But that said, when I lived there, Indian (and Fish & Chips) was to the U.K. what pizza and Chinese are to America. It was what you brought home when you didn't feel like cooking.


I guess the issue of "take-out" versus "fast food" was not something I considered. I wish I had paid more attention to the show. I think it was the Food Channel and I think they described it as a fast food place. If I see the show again (entirely likely on cable) I will try to get more info and Ian can let us know if it's a pack of lies.

There are also some fast food joints, but they tend to be fairly rare and specialise (from what I recall) in meat filled naan breads.
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Re: Confessions of a fast-food lover

by TimMc » Fri Aug 04, 2006 3:18 pm

Japanese take-out [and some Chinese take-out] is a very good for you and tasty fast food alternative, IMHO.

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