Showing posts with label southbank. Show all posts
Showing posts with label southbank. Show all posts

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

enlightened cuisine for lunch; or, things about noodles


The reason why Em and I ended up at Wagamama eating crappy soup noodles was because we reaaaaally wanted soup noodles, and we'd walked all the way to Enlightened Cuisine only to discover they don't do lunch on Sundays! SUPER SADFACE. We really wanted soupy noodles! Really truly!

So the next week, when I spent five days in the MCEC for Worldcon, I took the opportunity to visit Enlightened Cuisine on a quest for soupy noodles as many lunchtimes as possible! In the end, this was two.

laksa at the ec

Buried in the depths of my gross cold, I decided to try EC's laksa on my first lunch visit. This was spicy, which was excellent, but not quite assam-y or coconut-y. I did really enjoy the soup, and drank it up until my tongue was numb from spicyness. Oh yeah. Pleasant, and would eat again; but my search for the perfect vegan laksa in Melbourne continues.

wonton noodles at ec

On the second lunch visit, in the company of my friend Dr G, I tried the wonton noodle soup, which regular readers of this blog might recall that I adore. These wontons were pretty good, but I think the wonton noodles were the egg-based kind, which was unfortunate, and impacted my mood for the rest of the day. I may have lost my Awesome Vegan Powers! (temporarily) The broth was good, though. I would order this again, but swapping the wonton noodles out for rice noodles or something.

On this visit, Dr G ordered the cha siu noodle soup. This looked delicious, but due to my cold and potential contagion I elected not to steal any.

Oh how I love soupy noodles. They are great, especially when you're sick or sad or anything, really.

Previous visits: one; two.

Enlightened Cuisine
113 Queensbridge Street

Monday, 1 March 2010

last day of chinese new year / out at enlightened cuisine

The foods we eat at Chinese New Year are important: there is a symbolism there, we don't just eat them for tradition, we eat them because of superstition. That's not to deny that custom is involved, because it is, but its primary function is symbolic in nature.

We eat fish(鱼), for prosperity, and abundance.
We eat chicken(鸡), for happiness.
We eat noodles to bring us a long life.
We give oranges as a symbol that we wish our friends to be wealthy.
We eat peanuts for long life.

cny noodles

We share these dishes, passing them back and cross the table, dipping in with our chopsticks, to indicate that we wish these things for one another, that we want to share these things with our loved ones.

This is part of the reason why the hardest part about my veganism for my mother was not veganising foods, but coming to terms with the fact that we could no longer share in this way during Chinese New Year. And this is why mock meats exist, you know, for exactly this reason.

courting the abundance

Yesterday was the last day of Chinese New Year, so Em and Jo joined us at Enlighted Cuisine for one last CNY noodle sharing. The table across from us had yee sang, and oh I considered it for half a second, but put it aside for next year - next year we'll go to EC for yee sang, and lo hei it all up.

We ordered the lemon chicken, and we ordered an assam fish (the fish was deliciousness, though could have done with more sauce). Of course (of course) we ordered noodles, Em and I would have it no other way. We ordered some gailan, which was beautifully gingery, and we loaded up with chillis, both fresh and otherwise, which were tangy and spicy (in the case of the sambal, very spicy).

I wanted yee mee, but we went for the mee goreng, which was gently flavoured with curry powder (my favourite way of serving mee goreng).

EC was full of people doing both 15th day of the month stuff, and last day of CNY stuff, and it was nice. Sad it was so cold!

two! two types of chilli!

Sunday, 4 October 2009

enlightened cuisine for moon festival

When we arrived at Enlightened Cuisine, the table next to us was set up with a burner. Intrigued, I peered over occasionally, and as the table quickly filled with uncooked foods, drained noodles, and raw vegetables, I realised they were about to have a steamboat!

Sadly, we did not get to partake of the joys of steam boat. But next time! Now that I know!

Miss T perused the menu early and began hinting that we should consider the banquets. The banquets being varied, this general plan was agreed upon, but it took a further half an hour to reach any consensus regarding which one. In the end, we decided that half of us would order B1, and half of us would order B2, and we would simply share it all.

ma po tofu

This worked out to be both an excellent plan, and a not excellent plan. It was excellent because we got to try an array of dishes. It was a not-excellent plan because many of the dishes were very similar (meaning we could have achieved the same effect by ordering one dish each from the general menu).

The overall upside of this, is that we ended up voting for winners of each course. Sadly I cannot give you the results, as Miss T was our scribe, however I am sure she will post about it (complete with promised graph!) soon. ETA: Miss T's post including voting available now!

The meal commenced with spring rolls and curry puffs. They were fine but nothing special. They was followed by a (mock of course) shark fin soup, and a tofu and vegetable soup. The shark fin soup was deliciously awesome, I loved it.

some sort of fake prawn thing

Our first main dishes were prawny, a kung pao prawn and a sweet and sour prawn. I will confess I skipped both of these; I didn't like prawns when I still ate (and loved) seafood, there's no way I'm interested in replicating the flavour or the texture.

five spice tofu

These were followed by the ma po tofu and the five spice tofu. I was intrigued by the idea of the five spice tofu, but I felt their five spicy-ness was lost in the batter (I would have liked a little less batter, a little more marinating).

The fried rice and the mixed vegetables were good. The fried rice had a generous amount of diced cha siu, and the vegetables in their sauce were thick but not too thick (ie, not too corn starchy).

kung po "chicken" in nest

The final savoury dishes for the evening were sweet and sour pork, and kung po chicken in nest. The nest was awesome, made from deep fried potato, but the dish overall was a bit average. The sweet and sour pork was flouro and pineappley, classic Anglo-Aussie Chinese restaurant fare. No complaints.

banana fritter

Dessert consisted of something described only as 'lychee longan,' and banana fritters. The banana fritter was good, though nothing exciting, and the lychee longan was canned lychees and icecream. I had hopes the icecream was longan, but no such luck.

red bean moon cakes

We finished our evening with some red bean moon cake. Oh rich, delicious moon cake, how I love you, though I can only eat a bite or two.

We did have some issues with service: Jo wasn't eating the banquets, so ordered a separate dish, but the wait between our entrees and the main dishes was so great that she had just about finished eating by the time our first course arrived. After we had finished the main dishes, we then had to wait quite some time for our plates to be cleared, which was fine as we were just chatting but it was a bit awkward (and also we really wanted dessert!)

Overall it was a good evening, but this was my first visit to Enlightened Cuisine and I came away from it feeling a bit same-same. I think next visit (if I can't get the steam boat) I would like to avoid the banquet and order an array of dishes, and preferably at lunch time so I can try the noodles (who takes the noodles off the dinner menu? Ridiculous!)

Enlightened Cuisine
113 Queensbridge Street