A quest was in order: with so much free time on my hands until school starts, with me not being in my own house until end of september, I needed to find something to keep me out and about. Since I haven’t found a job yet (boo), what better than starting an Eating Series? Also what more appropriate than finding something cheap so that I can actually save money? Ladies and gentlemen, for your own private entertainment, the Cheap Lunch Series!
Firstly, what really is the Cheap Lunch Series? Any restaurant that offers something that could remotely be considered a main (so no starters) for less than 5 pounds. It really is that simple.
As I was bemoaning how my social life is rather damaging to my financial future, I was once more in a conundrum: lunch with Teresa on Friday. The perfect moment to start this experiment. We head off to Waterloo, and dear old Urbanspoon (much too underused here in the UK) pointed out to this particular little joint.
The insides of the Cafe were packed, filled with salt-of-the-earth people, reminding me of one of Allain de Botton’s chapters in which he is luncheoning in a small cafe by a british highway. It felt inappropriate for me to talk about my travels in Mexico and exotic Asia in an atmosphere which seemed to mimic the working class of Britain in the 19th century.
The food – I always digress. The mains were each 4.3 pounds, and, together with a can of coke, came to a lovely 5 quid, which is exactly within the limits for this “research”. I went with noodles and chicken stir fry with chilli and sweet basil, whilst Teresa went with the rice and chicken stir fry with oyster sauce. Now, if it weren’t for the rice vs noodles, I wouldn’t have been able to tell the dishes apart by just looking at them. Which is slightly problematic considering oyster sauce is supposed to be black, not a watery grey.
The food was rather bland. I couldn’t feel the chilli nor the basil. Yet it oddly seemed to fulfill the purpose of the Series; I was looking for edible food that was cheap, not necessarily something that could rock my world and not cost me the world. So if you fancy something cheap and are in the area, pop by.