Yesterday was an incredibly eventful day for me. A morning spent at communication day for work, followed by copious amounts of free booze and pizza provided by work (ah the joys of the Christmas period). Only to be directly followed directly after by my second staff Christmas party of the evening for my other job. I guess double the work, double the festivities. So for my second job I work at a wonderful cook school called Food at 52 in Islington which I will also post about at some point, but as a treat for us they decided that we should have someone else do the cooking for us for one night. We were told that we would be having Mexican food in Brick Lane, so of course we all assumed this would be a restaurant. Imagine my surprise when we pulled up to Brick lane and were met by a very artistic Graffiti-ed door to a flat above the noise of the stylish, artsy brick lane crowd. Being ever the cynic I was slightly unsure about this set-up and made my way up the steps with the rest of my staff team with caution expecting to be met by a tiny flat in an expensive area… How wrong I was! We were met by the hosts, a husband and wife who run the company Malinche together, a long, beautifully laid table in a gorgeous and spacious room with the scents of Mexican spices and roasted pork in the air.
The hosts were amazing and explained each dish after they were served and before we begun to tuck into it all. They also very graciously catered for out 4 pescatarians who decided to let our hosts know very last minute of this dietary restriction. We were served a large bowl of guacamole with tortilla chips in the middle of the table, which I of course strategically sat myself in front of, to begin the meal. We were the served a Plantain Molote, a pastry like dish which contained plantain, feta cheese and refried beans, served with creme fraiche and a gorgeous, and slightly spicy red sauce. This dish reminded me slightly of the flavour of Ghanaian yam pottage as it had a slightly sweet but at the same time savoury flavour, and was a delicious start to the meal. After this we were served the tortilla soup. They first put the bowl down containing the tortilla strips, avocado, and chillies, and I looked at the menu, looked at it again, and sat there in confusion as I was sure that the menu said soup. Me and my colleague debated this for a while, before our hosts interrupted to pour the black bean broth on top of what was in our bowls and we suddenly had a dish that resembled soup that we were familiar with. The soup was rich, warm and filling and made a great addition to the meal. Now for the main star of the meal! We were served a Cochinita Pibil, a dish which the hosts described as a “little she-pig” and we sat there in confusion trying to work out what this meant, and whether this was a hybrid of a sheep and a pig, before being told that this meant a small female pig (bare in mind, we had been drinking all day). The meat was served wrapped in bamboo leaves, with a black bean puree and freshly made tortillas on the side. Let me just say, that was some of the most tender, flavourful and most delicious pork I have ever eaten. I am usually a little wary of pulled pork style meats as these can either turn out very dry or very soggy, but this was cooked to perfection! From the first bite I was making sounds of appreciation and doing my little food dance (which has been pointed out to me many times). The hosts kept us plied with cocktails, tortillas and good conversation throughout. We finished with a cake made from cornflour, served with tequila custard! I love tequila, and I love custard, so this was a perfect end to the night. Overall the food was amazing, the hosts were incredibly friendly and accommodating and made us feel very welcome, and the space was gorgeous. I would definitely recommend. As you can see above, they have flyers for their business, and offer cooking classes and supper clubs also. You can find their information below, I hope you try them out, its definitely an experience I would repeat again, and it was wonderful to be able to get a small taste of authentic mexico in London.
Malinche Real MX food – Book at http://malinche.uk/ Email: Malincherealmxfood@gmail.com, call on 07721548660 or follow their social media at @Malincherealmxfood