Top takeaways from Bombay Bicycle Chef

One of the joys of urban living (I grew up on a farm so really appreciate these joys) is the takeaway. Food someone else cooks, delivered to your door…how splendid. And we love an Indian takeaway so were delighted to discover the Bombay Bicycle Club – or Bombay Bicycle Chef as their takeaway arm is called.

Their comprehensive menu is divided into sections to make ordering easier. You get to choose from a range of starters, clay oven specials, vegetable, seafood, chicken, lamb and biriyani dishes. Delivery is guaranteed within 45 minutes – ours arrived within half an hour – with a smile. Here’s what we tucked into.

The Kebab Lamb came from the clay oven special section. Succulent cubes of lamb marinated in yogurt, herbs and medium hot spices and cooked in the clay oven.

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Tasty lamb bites with a touch of spice

The Murgh Madurai is breast of chicken marinated in herbs and spices, grilled in a clay oven and cooked in a rich tomato sauce with green chilli.

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Large chicken pieces in their silken sauce

The perfectly cooked, succulent king prawns in the Pathway are served in a sweet and sour sauce with curry leaves. The dish has a lovely tang to it – and I love the flavour curry leaves add.

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Plenty of perfectly cooked, juicy prawns

And for our final main course choice, a classic – Chicken Jalfrezi. Tandoori chicken breast cooked with lots of chopped garlic, green chilli, peppers and curry leaves.

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Chicken Jalfrezi and fluffy Pilau Rice

There’s always an amazing vegetable selection in Indian restaurants and the Gobi Sabji is lovely. Fresh cauliflower is cooked with tomato, ginger and garlic. Nicely crunchy and infused with great flavours.

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Spicy vegetables complete the meal

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Love the design of the delivery bags

Bags of warm popadoms arrive with little bowls of homemade mint yogurt and mango chutney.

How I love takeaways!

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Warm and crispy popadoms

Today’s price point

A hearty meal for four cost £41.45 (and there were some leftovers).

Kebab Lamb £6.25

Murgh Madurai £8.45

King Prawn Pathway £10.75

Chicken Jalfrezi £8.55

Pilau Rice £2.50

Gobi Sabji £4.95

Bombay Bicycle Chef delivers in areas of South West and South East London.

Find out more at bombaybicyclechef.com

Or visit www.emerz.co.uk

Bombay Bicycle Chef delivers in areas of South West and South East London.

 

Heavenly pizzas to take away

Happiness is having an outstanding pizza takeaway on your doorstep – well it certainly helps. Which is why we were thrilled to discover Call-A-Pizza in Sea Point.

This is no ordinary pizza place. The menu is seven pages long with all sorts of mouth-watering delights from the classic to the unusual to the, quite frankly, weird. But first some history. Call-A-Pizza was started in 1987 by two model friends who returned from Europe and were dismayed to find they couldn’t get the deliveries they were used to. It’s said to be the first company to deliver pizzas in the country. Its current owners took over in 1989 and have developed this uniquely special place.

We first discovered it last year and (having had a couple of beers) went about ordering from the Make Your Own Pizza section. When we picked up our boxes we were amazed at how heavy they were…okay we were hungry and had gone big on our toppings, but we had no idea how generous they were going to be. Even the most basic of pizzas have generous portions of everything, making for a fabulous pizza experience. We couldn’t even manage half of what we had ordered. Greed had truly got the better of us.

Choosing from the options on the menu is not easy. There’s vegetarian, seafood, chicken, gourmet combination gourmet pizzas, meaty pizzas (normal and well-topped) and mega pizzas which are described as super well-topped. And in this mix as well as the Italian norm you’ll find flavours of India, Thailand, Portugal, Mexico, South America, the US and South Africa. Here’s a few examples.

The Taj (well-topped)

Spicy mince curry or mild lemon and ginger chicken curry with basmati rice under mozzarella cheese, topped with a drizzle of chilli oil with separate tubs of sambals, chutney, banana and whole curried chillis.

Sausage Fest (well-topped)

Garlic, frankfurter sausage and pepperoni under mozzarella cheese, topped with salami, chorizo sausage, Russian sausage and boerewors (South African sausage).

Jose Grande

Beef mince chilli con carne (with baked beans) and our famous red chilli ‘fire’ sauce under mozzarella cheese topped with mixed peppers, chopped tomato and onion rings and avocado, peppadew and nachos after baking.

Or you could have The Works which has 21 set toppings, a large one weighs over 2.5kg and serves 4 (at least I would say). Choose this and you have garlic, chilli, mushrooms, chicken fillet, beef bolognese mince, salami and ham under mozzarella topped with cheddar, feta, whole corn, asparagus, pineapple, green and red and yellow peppers, olives, tomato, onion and bacon with peppadew after baking. The mind boggles. It reminds me of one of my favourite sayings by Miss Piggy from The Muppets: “Never eat more than you can carry” – you get the idea.

For me, the basic meaty pizzas are perfect. Not that there’s anything basic about them! I’ve fallen in love with their Hawaiian which is so cheesy and hammy and a medium does me for two meals.

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The best Hawaiian pizza ever?

Also in the ‘normal’ meaty section is the American – pepperoni under mozzarella topped with jalapeno chilli and tomato. Beautifully spicy. Oh and their bases are wonderfully thin and crisp (they only do them one way and it’s perfect).

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An American with extra onion

Find out more and gaze at the choices at www.callapizza.co.za. They’ve certainly taken the whole genre into a different league. It’s given me plenty of food for thought when I next create a pizza at home, though that won’t be for a while with Call-A-Pizza across the road.

Call-A-Pizza is at 57 Regent Road, Sea Point.

Chuck Yang’s yummy Chinese in the Southern Suburbs

You know what it’s like when you have a craving for Chinese food. You just have to have it – and luckily I remembered the perfect place to go. We first visited Chuck Yang’s Speciality Dish two years ago and have been planning to return ever since.

The interestingly-named restaurant has a tiny seating area in a basic room on a main road deep in the Burbs in Rondebosch. This does not have the look of a fine-dining restaurant, but, as I often find myself saying, never judge a book by its cover. The food is great, the service friendly and welcoming and you’ll gasp with pleasure at your bill, too.

Taiwanese chef Chuck Yang cooks up a storm in the tiny kitchen and plate after plate of piping hot, freshly cooked, delicious dishes arrive at the table. You can tell the ingredients are all fresh. Menus are in Chinese and English and everything is wonderfully authentic. Went there two years ago and could all remember just what we had the last time (which is saying something considering how many eateries I’ve frequented in between). And we wanted to order it all over again. So we did.

First up, prawn foo yung. A tasty combo of prawns and vegetables snuggling until a duvet of delectable omelette. Never has an omelette tasted so fresh, tasty and perfectly textured. And the vegetables were crunchy and packed with Chinese flavours.

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A fluffy, flavoursome omelette with tasty prawns and veggies snuggling beneath it

Another favourite is the general chicken, which arrives scattered with plenty of sesame seeds. It doesn’t say how the general chicken is prepared, all I can say is it’s generally delicious – and no dinner here would be complete with a portion of this yummy dish. Think it’s got to be the Speciality Dish mentioned up in lights.

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General chicken; piping hot and delicious

And then there’s one of the best calamari dishes ever. Not for the chilli faint hearted, it has a true bite to it. We were even warned to avoid the pieces of dried chilli on the plate if we didn’t like it really hot (we’re talking really, really hot here!). The calamari was tasty and perfectly cooked, again with lovely crunchy vegetables. Keep water on hand…the chilli does really hit you but as with all good, hot dishes, the flavour doesn’t linger unpleasantly.

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Calamari with a true chilli bite

To complete the set we ordered the beef with coriander and basil. An unusual dish, lightly coated in spices and quickly deep fried (I would say), the flavours pop in your mouth and the meat has a slight, unexpected crispness. Delightful

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Tender beef with coriander and basil

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Chuck Yang’s sign twinkles in the night, welcoming you

They don’t have a licence, so take along your own wine and they’ll happily supply wine glasses.

For such lovely Chinese food, the prices are fantastic. Our entire dinner cost us R500 for 4 people (about R28) and we had plenty to satisfy.

So Chinese cravings satisfied, for now anyway, though we did leave clutching the takeaway menu.

Chuck Yang’s Speciality Dish is at 93 Campground Road, Rondesbosch