Ardri, again. How could anyone forget? Getting him to pose for this shot with his anachronistic pride-of-scottish-joy wheels was about as easy as taking candy from a diabetic baby who hates candy and has no hands. In the respite which was our uni break, his ever restless mind has been doing all of its usual turns and ticks to see how it could reinvent what was already wowing a very devoted and otherwise fickle, student crowd. And when Adriano asks, the taste gods answer. CK'tians, I give you: Eggy Crumpets with bacon and maple syrup. Perhaps not a revelation in combination, but, my fussy foodies, the genius is always, always, in the delectable details. Drool proof your laps, this is how it's done...
This dish involves several simple, select flavours making maddening love with themselves all on a pretty white plate. It begins with a 1/2 sourdough Brasserie Bread crumpet, all rich and rustic looking, not at all like the cartoonish ones you pick up at Coles. This is snobified crumpet, wide and imperial and with a gorgeously chewy texture, ready to soak up any willing gooeyness of gorgeous flavour. In order to get the creamy eggy mixture to bind to the crumpets the way it does so lusciously, Ardi came up with the ingenious idea of using stretched milk globs, the kind of skin you see on the top layer of a coffee which hasn't been made properly. A scrumptious crumptious that's been slightly dipped into some of this will bind wonderfully with Ardri's rich, fresh, frothy, WhisperLight free range egg mix. It tastes like the best french toast you've ever had, but with the silkier and chewier texture of crumpet base-edness. Holy Crumpet Christ!
Crispy As Barossa Valley Bacon adorns this eggy crumpeted creation like a meaty neglige. So divine. Deep, rich, clean and full flavoured bacon, with little flickers of burnt ChewyChewyChewy Crisp Sizzle SnapInYourMouth pockets of well done piggy flesh. It's a carnivores last hurrah. This stuff is like heaven with a side of God, basted in some St Peter. So good. And just to push you over the divine edge of solid sound and reason: lashings, and I am talking down. right. syrup. down pour of madness as maple. Hallelujah. Before he presents this bacchian beauty to you, he makes a pure Canadian maple mess of the things. It's a clean but heady as all high hellish sweetness that offsets the saltiness of the bacon so frickin fabulously, and then you bite through crumpety eggness and have to wrestle with moist and chewy crumpet fibers of enraptured being. It just may not be in good taste to eat this in public, not at all proper or Presbyterian of you. The combination will draw you into severe raptures of PDA with yourself and your fork. So, for those of you who prefer to be made sweet dainty mouth love to, Ardri has not left you at all wanting:
Oooh. That's not how you make porridge, but that's probably how you should. Ardri is almost as proud of this as he is of his courageous crumpet. One of my more pleasant memories of 2009 will be recounting him describing the ingredients, which I shall divulge, and finishing it all off (in thick Scottish accent) with 'those are Scottish oooooats'. No shit, sherlock. What else were they going to be? Yummy and creamy and light. This porridge is delicate and chai infused! Chai and oats are like Marge and Homer: made for eachother. It's a very subtle teaspice that perfumes a little floating dream of porridge ridden perfection. Pure Polly Anna breakfasting, this is.
A little gingered sugar and organic orange juice is used to delicately persuade some fruit into achingly pliable poachedness. Rhubarb, dried fruit, sometimes pear or apple. It's a subtle and gorgeous, moist fruited coolness you bite into, not overly sweetened, it tastes sweet and spicy and stains like a coy blush on the ivory cheek of an 17th Century English Rose, the creamy dream of softened oats beneath. Ardri soaks the oats overnight, which isn't just great for releasing the nuttiness of the flavour, it assists with breaking the fibers down and makes this porridge much more digestible for people with amateur alimentaries (like moi). It is finished with a generous spattering of fresh, singingly green pistachio and a dollop of pure organic cream. And, in something Tats and I agreed shows that Clipper Knows Porridge, it isn't a too large serve. Porridge isn't something to be eaten in massive amounts, a good bowl with almost as much porridge to fruit is much more enjoyable than an enormous dry bowl that just gets monotonous to munch through, the flavouring on top should mix well and in equal parts with the porridge to moisten it. Too large a bowl is like only buttering a section of your toast, leaving the rest dry and flavourless. This is the perfect size, a warming whisper of chai spiced persuasion. This isn't just good breakfast food, it'd be great afternoon teaing.
Just a yummier menu with the old sandwich stellars, nothing else has changed. Still at 16 Glebe Point Road, Glebe. Still open six days, from six til six. Still the best grub in or near Sydney Uni.
Adriano Matteoni, take your bow. ADHD is a truly beautiful thing in a crazy, food mad, Scottish mind.