Il Buco - luckily the name is not apt in the negative sense

and once again
i come back to grace the pages of blogspot!

before attending a not so well enjoyed punk gig
Saturday night at Poxx Bar
and after driving away from my last work shift at the nationalist propaganda machine that is Net News
i stopped by this little shop in the corner accross and opposite the culinary infamous Champs
in paceville

now to deviate a little
there was a time were fast food and street food was scarce in our little clubtown
i remember many a night enjoying Champs' almost plastic like pizzas
while intoxicated on similar quality booze
i dont eat there any more unless i really want to eat that sort of thing
which lately is a craving i almost never get

today however there are a number of eateries in town
which give a bit of a more interesting variety

i had noticed il buco about a week ago and i had an inkling memory that the place was a cheesecounter/salumeria sandwich bar
but wasn't too sure
i passed by but instead of going in i bought a burger and a chicken drumstick from the barbecue they had set up on their parapet
then whilst eating i caught good glimpses of the inside and realised that i was right on my hunch
and that i missed a better eating opportunity

last Saturday i returned to the place
to complete my testing mission
and the results were extremely satisfactory
Il Buco is now up there in the top two street food eating experiences in paceville
the other one being the previously blogged Al Rifugio's

on the downside i must note that Al Rifugio changed their Salame Piccante to another variety which although very similar is not exactly the same and makes the pizza a bit different
this had become my favorite pizza topping
furthermore they have increased the prices
a large pizza now sells for a around a whopping fiver

back to the hole
Il Buco has a wholesome display of pickled vegetables and delicatessen
different cheeses
maybe like 20 different cheeses
and another well varied selection of salamis
and section of pickled delicacies
they offer baguettes and Maltese ftiras and apart from the sandwiches they offer pasta dishes
i haven't tried these but they looked like quality stuff

i think that one of the owners is Italian
which is always comforting
what i am sure of
is that the young
short and bleached haired girl at the counter
is as cute as they come
which is always welcoming

i hope that this business thrives


achewood on molecular gastronomy

click on it to view

from http://achewood.com/index.php?date=01262007


molecular gastronomy

have you ever wondered why meat becomes brown when you cook it?
why jelly is produced if you boil bones and then let it cool?
why custard when you fuck it up becomes scrambled eggs?
how whipped cream gets stiff, and why it can come out of a can ready and whipped?
why eggs solidfy when heated whilst cheese melts when heated?
or why cotton candy forms the way it does?

well i have
and i don't know any of the above answers to fine scientific detail
however a certain french scientist Herve This and a physicitst Nicholas Kurti investigated the science of the kitchen back in the late sixties
and as a result they coined the term molecular gastronomy

today molecular gastronomy is mostly attatched to certain restaurants who have applied some of This' and Kurti's findings and have contiuned to research in their own kitchen-laboratories

two of the most popular of these are Ferran Adria of El Bulli in Roses Spain
and Heston Blumenthal of The Fat Duck in Bray, Berkshire, England

Blumenthal is responsible for such food creations as the bacon and egg ice-cream, the snail porridge, oyster and passionfruit jelly with lavender, triple-cooked chips, and poached breast of Anjou pigeon with pancetta
although some of his ideas sound less palatable i would want to taste Bluimenthal's dishes at least once
an interesting technique that Blumenthal propounds is the cooking of certain foods at very slow speeds
for example cooking meat for up to 24 hours on very low temperartures

Adria is the one that i m most interested in, i ve been reading about him for more than a year
and the El Bulli restaurant is one that i will definetely eat in one day, (i hope)

he is responsible for culinary foam such as foamed espresso, foamed mushroom, foamed beet and foamed parsley
this foam is put on top of food to complement and garnish
he is also well known for the inventions of liquid pea ravioli -which holds itself together much like an egg yolk does- and for fruit caviar which has the exact texture and make up of caviar but is made of fruit puree
these last ones hold themselves together using a similar technique as far as i can understand

however it is difficult to replicate it in a normal kitchen since you need these two chemicals which in turn they also need to be graded for human consumption

since i discovered how to embed youtube videos in here you will probably be seeing more visual content along with your reads here is a four part tv documentary on Ferran Adria and his food

and here is Blumenthal's quest for the perfect pizza:


hawn tal pastizzi shan u tajbin

this morning i ate some pastizzi
nothing notable
the usual kind a few hours stale
they re best when fresh
then i was thinking of that song by the ex-Fr.David Azzopardi
it goes something like this

"hawn tal pastizzi,
shan u tajbin
tlett soldi il-wiehed
erba xelin"

now i m not sure if the lyrics are right but i think they are
and they translate (very loosely) to something like this

"here's the pastizzi-guy
they're warm and good
three cents each
four for a shilling"
now as far as i know a shilling is 5 pence, 5 cents in malta
and i am guessing (probably incorrectly) that a "sold" is a cent
so how can it be that one pastizz is 3 cents and four pastizzi are 5 cents i mean thats a very unreasonable bargain

if any readers know better please post comments
i m also looking for a streamed version of that pastizzi song by the ex-Fr.David Azzopardi
who showed us all that his true love was for the pastizz when he gave up priesthood and got married instead

whilst looking for it on you tube i instead found something better:

i love the way she bit into her pastizz too!
don't you?


getting it off my chest- al rifugio or sizzlers

i ve mentioned this place before so here goes
before al rifugio was given birth as a thriving pizza place by two(?) sicilian guys it was a run off the mill turkish kebab place in paceville
i don't go out a lot anymore
paceville has become a place for young people with questionable musical tastes
and a vanguard, forward-thinker, hip trendsetter like me cannot mingle about like a cheap man-whore
however when i do
i either get shitfaced in coconut (grove) on vodka-redbull shooter trays or else i pass through after watching a film at the cinema
(by the way you ve got to watch hot fuzz, cos i watched it yesterday and its nothing short of mind blowingly spectacular[even if you read this from like the future or something, look for it or for a Multi-sense-media enhanced release of the film and love life for at least another day{you ll know what i mean}])
what i always do however if i m in town
is to pass by this al rifugio place
dont look for al rifugio as the sicilian guys in there dont seem to have been too arsed about changing the sign that says sizzlers in highlighter neon style
ok basically without cluttering this blog post any further i must prescribe
this pizza to anyone that has ever eaten.
i dont usually use a fullstop to punctuate but that seemed appropriate
what is so special about these guys' pizza is that its magnificent simplicity is like that perfect wistful song or that uniquely attractive woman you see walking by who you ll never meet again
the experince is full of presence yet a little fantastic and fleeting and out of reach...
its difficult to put to words why basic pizza crust, tomato puree, cheese and salame piccante can be so out of this world
"una al salame piccante"
that is my favorite version
my second favorite would have to be the parma ham one
i really have nothing else to say
eat this pizza
and dont feel guilty over harbouring thoughts of pizza dedicated shrine-building endeavors
i know i won't
(i ll post photographs when the project is finished)

getting it off my chest - chinese place in mosta and turkish kebab in general

ok so i havent been a good blogger lately
so i m going to round up quickly anything i have to say for the time being
and hopefully this will lead to prolific blogging in the future

Da hua chinese restaurant in mosta:

if i had written this a week ago i would have completely shunned this place
however i must say that at least the sweet and sour pork is ok
chicken is bad though so stay away
only try if you want that dodgy chinese food experience
but the sweet and sour pork is good
i also had tried frog legs two weeks back
they re ok
much like tender moist chicken
except they really look like half a frog

Sofra Msida:
since i ve been working in hamrun
many a night whilst driving back home from work
i stop by this turkish diner
and they really do have some decent food
so far my turkish diner picks would be Sofra, both the one in msida and the one in bugibba,
and the doner place in naxxar
maybe its called naxxar kebab house or something like that
sofra in msida have this really good qarabali salad
qarabali is marrow
i think
anyway i usually take salads
to trick myself into thinking that i m working on my weight problem
however it is dawning on me that when nutritionists recommend salads they do not mean couscous, mayo-ed coleslaw, creamy potato salad, sweetcorn and fried qarabali
i think they think of green leafy shit when they do so
back to sofra
sofra also have very good pizza
you know... good enough
better than most places
but not better than al rifugio's in paceville
not by a kick in the nuts or a week's walk in a scorching desert
the kebab house in naxxar
have a cajun burger which is really the thing
big, filling, and with a layer of bacon and beef cutlets straight form the slowly spinning meat wheel
and you dont really need to take the side plate of chips
but hey its customary
here i also really like the istanbul special
a pastizz shaped, 17 inch, pizza pie , with an assortment of tasty kebab meats
what is also really good from these places is when they have a chicken meat wheel on the go and it is brown on the oustide
a chicken doner wrap with coleslaw and couscous inside is really something out of this world
i don't know why but the chicken open baked in that way gets glazed in its own fat so beautifully
that well ... it does....

i always accompany these meals witha peach juice in a glass bottle
i dont know the name but maybe its turkish too
the product is also available in cans
but i always find that food and drink taste better when eaten from glass or ceramic rather plastic or metal