Generally speaking, I can be quite nit – picky about where I eat and what I eat. From issues with mismatched cutlery, to horribly prepared food to less than courteous waiters; all these factors make me a very reluctant diner. I remember once, I went to a 4 star hotel in Abuja for dinner and as I sat down, I instantly noticed that the cutlery on the table was mismatched; I was baffled! Couldn’t a hotel of this “caliber” get place setting right? Don’t even get me started on a popular hotel in VIctoria Island, who’s meals I can barely put in my mouth.
Airline food? That’s a whole other set of problems! The rep is ……well…..lets just say……it’s legendary for being generally unpalatable and underseasoned.
So on a recent trip to the “concrete jungle where dreams are made of” I decided to chronicle some of the meals I had while airborne.
In no particular order, on the first leg of my trip, there was a nice fresh salad with seasonal vegetables and a good mix of dressings and vinaigrettes. My favorite though was the ensuing mezze. You will find out, in subsequent posts (and in a new book ?) all about my entanglements with mezzes.
This one didn’t disappoint; it was so fresh! The tabbouleh was on the money. The stuffed grape leaves were amazing. I loved it all.I then decided that I wanted a light main course and opted for the seared tiger prawn in parsley & garlic butter and Mediterranean vegetables. The prawns were moist and chunky. Everything was perfectly seasoned and all around delicious and fresh. So far I was a happy camper.
On another leg of the trip. I opted for another salad as a starter and a main of veal and potatoes. To be frank this meal was not memorable. The salad was fine but the main! What a train wreck! It look like pig’s slop and tasted like seasoned card board which is not saying a lot because it was just awful. I didn’t bother to eat the meal.
The dessert was a dark chocolate fondant in caramel sauce. Give me dark chocolate any day and I will be happy. So that was nice to have after eating cardboard.
One of the breakfast meals consisted of a grilled egg and bacon panini, cinnamon roll and Greek yoghurt. Everything was fine save that I found the cinnamon roll to be a tad dry.
The next series of meals came up with top marks; I enjoyed them thoroughly!
The seasonal salad was great but the real star was the asparagus with Burford brown egg and truffle dressing. It was earthy, fresh and delish.
The main was surprisingly delicious. I say surprising because it was a chilled meal and I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy cold cooked salmon. Also, I hadn’t ever eaten two of the ingredients described in menu. Well I was amazingly surprised. What a delicious plate of happiness. It was a dish of roasted salmon with Turkish spices, fregola, pomegranate seeds, parsley, mint and sumac.
Fregola is a type of pasta found in Sardinia and sumac is a wonderful tart spice used mostly in Middle Eastern cooking.
The marriage of flavours was nothing short of magical! Can you tell from my empty plates? ?
The magic flowed seamlessly into dessert of Somerset Camembert and Barber’s cheese served with fig relish and biscuits.At the end of the meal, I was well and truly stuffed, so much so that when the next meal was offered before we landed, I waved it off contentedly for there was no room. But more importantly, I didn’t want to ruin, what in my opinion, was a perfect gastronomic encounter.
I cannot wait to tell you all about the highs and lows of my food adventures in New York.