Tag Archives: sausage

Oberlaa: Make room for macaroons!

Oberlaa: Babenbergerstrasse, Vienna, Austria

If you have a sweet tooth then this is the place for you. Vienna is known for its sachertorte, apple strudel and chocolates but Oberlaa takes it to the next level both in terms of presentation and taste. Sure, it’s expensive (a box of Grand Marnier truffles will set you back €12 for 9 chocolates) but what can you expect from a cafe so close to the popular MuseumsQuartier? The display is staggering. There are chocolate cakes, strudels (apple and quark cheese), nut tortes, macaroons coloured blue, green, brown and a bright bubblegum pink and not to mention every variety of truffle under the Austrian sun. It’s a shame we stopped by just for lunch, really…

The cafe itself is simple and inviting with a pale wooden and orange interior. The service was very quick and friendly, the food arriving with no fuss and although in very little time, not too quickly for comfort either.

A ham roll finely garnished turned out to be a medley of peas, sweetcorn and carrot trussed in mayonnaise and wrapped in two slices of thin ham. Beside it was a crunchy leaf salad, baby corn and gherkins both welcome additions. Sesame bread and the classic soft Vienna bread filled out the salad. Oberlaa toast was a cheese and ham toastie served with a dish of sweet tomato sauce. The toastie was nothing special unfortunately and the sauce was a little too lumpy and thick in consistency. Still, nothing inedible and it was declared enjoyable. Finally was the Austrian veal sausage which, in no disparaging way, looks rather like a Frankfurter hotdog. The veal added a slightly meatier taste and the mustard was French-style; tasty. Grated horseradish was an interesting addition and worked well. It was decided that the sausage was a bit too Frankfurter-like when we matched the taste and appearance but the tag attaching the two long sausages together assured us it was all Viennese.

Lunch here is hit and miss but they do have a daily specials menu from 11-1pm that includes more substantial Viennese dishes so choose wisely and keep room for a slice of cake. Or, hand choose a selection of their lovely chocolates and stuff yourself silly.

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way to jerk!: Mama’s Jerk Station, Camden

We’re back in Camden Market, this time scouring the West Yard of the Lock Market for something tasty for lunch.

Enter: Mama’s Jerk Station. This family run company specialises in Carribean street food and does it damn well. The short but spicy menu consists of dumpling soup, jerk salad boxes or wraps, all of which are available in a vegetarian variety using jerk bean cakes. Fried plantain is a great side addition and if you’re a real meat-eater then try the sumptuous jerk pork sausage too!

Typical of the Carribean-style jerk spice, Mama’s make fantastic use of hot peppers (scotch bonnet variety), both in the spice-rub on their chicken but also in a fiery hot pepper sauce. If the jerk spices are enough then you can always opt for a dollop of the tropical mayo; an exotic and refreshing drizzle is just what you need to put the fire in your belly out. The chicken is also grilled traditionally, with the added smoky flavour that Carribean jerk food is known for compared to the Jamaican variety, by using charcoal in the grilling drum. The marinade itself is primarily pimento (or allspice) and Scotch Bonnet Peppers but also includes garlic, thyme, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, scallions and salt.

I opted for a jerk chicken salad box. Crisp iceberg lettuce was piled into my polystyrene box, followed by hearty scoops of diced tomato and cucumber; this was surprisingly fresh and with a great bite. Next came grated carrot in Mama’s own coleslaw; light, laid-back on the mayonnaise/cream and with a really defined texture. Finally, the star of the show. Slabs of chicken were pulled off the grill for me and hacked up with a cleaver’s knife. Chunks were then tossed into my box with a drizzle of the hot pepper sauce. The chicken was juicy, mouth-wateringly so, and the spices caught in the back of my throat before raging down my insides. Delicious! The whole box had a freshness and vibrancy that is so often missing from street food. My servers were both friendly, determined to get passers-by to try their food, and wonderfully efficient.

Imagine all the above mentioned stuffed into a pillowy tortilla and you have a fat, saucy wrap bursting with a dose of the Carribean.

Mama’s jerk recipe has passed through the generations, first created in Jamaica as an offshoot of the country’s classic marinade. You can find Mama’s Jerk Station at:

  • West Yard, Camden Lock Market, Camden
  • Vibe Bar, Old Truman Brewery, Brick Lane
  • Portobello Road Market, Portobello Road (Saturdays only)

Get jerkin!

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