During the working week, I’ve come to discover that lunchtime is my weak spot, especially when I’ve run out the house with a banana and a coffee for breakfast. I become this hangry, difficult, half-human which can only be tamed with a delicious, hearty lunch. However, eating at a restaurant every lunchtime is not a viable option, nor are boring sandwich shops, so I’ve found the best of both worlds: street food stalls!
Thus, I’ve decided to start a series on HGAT introducing you guys to some of the best, comforting halal street foods in London to help get you through your day. Not only are these options affordable, but give you a taste of something different. So, I’ll start with one of the best: Makatcha.
Makatcha is an Indonesian food stall run by husband and wife, and specialise in three types of rendang: beef, chicken, and vegan. For £6, you’ll receive a box filled with white rice, a generous helping of rendang, singaporean achar, and vegetables topped with Malaysian peanut sauce. Naturally, I opted for the beef.
The dark and rich rendang was one of the best I have had. Slow-cooked, shredded beef that was so deliciously mouth-melting that I couldn’t help but eat all of it. It was perfectly spicy with enough heat to tantalise your tastebuds without scorching them right off, and if this wasn’t hot enough, the achar (chilli pickle) added a great punch. The meat had absorbed all the flavouring so you could taste the creaminess of the coconut milk, as well as the slight tang from the lemongrass, coming though in each bite.
The vegetables that were served on the side broke up the meatiness and had been cooked al dente to add a little crunch. The slightly spicy peanut sauce that had been served atop the vegetables finished the meal off nicely.
Asides from serving really good food, one of the best things about Makatcha is the value for money. They’re able to provide a meal double the size for a fraction of the price that you normally pay at a restaurant, making them the perfect and quick lunchtime option during the week. Even better for this temperamental London weather!
Where to find them? They are part of the Kerb connection so you can usually spot them in either Paddington, King’s Cross, West Quay, or at the Gherkin. On the weekend, you’ll find them at Broadway Market on Saturday and Chatsworth Market on Sunday. Follow them on twitter to find out more details.
P.S. If you can’t make up your mind between the chicken and beef rendangs, you can always ask for a mix of the two – best of both!