I can’t quite remember why I decided to do this bloody MA. I suppose because work had paid for the first half of the course (my Postgraduate Diploma) and I thought it would be a shame not to write a dissertation and get a masters. Right now though, as I’m using my annual leave in order to actually have time to sit down and think (ha!) and write, I’m struggling to remember why it was such a good idea. However, here I am.
It’s not all bad though as my boyfriend is on holiday this week with his family which gives me the run of the flat. I should add that I was invited too but declined because I need to work on this dissertation. I’m not too sad though because I genuinely love alone time. I love my boyfriend too but I am a loner by nature and dislike compromise and in a one bed flat with one TV, there’s often a lot of compromising. So I’m loving some Lisa time. However, I do also need a reason to leave the flat, otherwise I risk becoming a bit of a hermit, so I resolved that this week would be the week that I visited the no-reservation restaurants that I’ve wanted to try for ages but really couldn’t be arsed to queue for on a weekend. I swear that places that don’t take reservations are basically designed to penalise those of us that work in full-time jobs. Is it not bad enough that I lunch at my desk and rarely finish before 7pm but that I can’t visit the trendiest places in London without resorting to a massive queue? No. This week is my opportunity. And hey, a girl’s got to eat. And a girl really does have to eat more than cheese toasties for days at a time, that shit was fine as a 19 year old student, it’s not fine at 31.
Rather than do one big round-up post at the end of the week, I thought I’d do mini blog posts throughout the week and what better place to start than with Bao? Purveyor of pillowy soft steamed buns and tote bags which proclaim that their toter has either braved the queue or has an infinitely cooler and less rigid job than I do. I’ve wanted to visit for ages. This was my chance.
Being a solo diner, I decided to head to their Fitzrovia branch as each week, starting on a Monday, they are doing 50 sets of mini bao, smaller versions of the big ones. Not having been before and not being able to share, it was the perfect way to knock out the bao section of the menu in one fell swoop.
For £16 you get mini versions of all five bao: the classic (slow-braised pork, peanut powder, shredded coriander and fermented greens), confit pork, black cod, beef shortrib and daikon plus, a mini-coke or coldbrew oolong tea.
The buns are super soft and all of the fillings are delicious. The most surprising though was the daikon. I definitely wouldn’t have ordered a large one as I normally tend to stick with meat options, but it was two bites of panko-crumbed daikon cake, hot sauce covered deliciousness. Fat thumb for scale:
If you haven’t been already, I thoroughly recommend Bao and totally get why there’s always a queue, although you can make a booking to eat downstairs at the Fitzrovia branch.
Right, back to dissertating…