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lunch

Random Bites

At work, there are very few places to eat, at least within walking distance. Downtown Conshy has a few decent choices, but down where we are, there are only a few options. One is the Mona Lisa Cafe, which is next to one of the bigger office buildings. It’s not that exciting of a place. I had the chicken quesadillas there the other day, and it wasn’t half bad! I was quite pleased.

For Wednesday’s lunch, we had another new and interesting one, made-to-order stir fry from a catering company. I was quite leery of an american catering company making stir fry. It wasn’t anything special, as I couldn’t really put my finger on what flavoring it was. Let’s just say it was “asian” or “oriental”. It wasn’t bad though, as I got to pick my meat of choice, and I picked shrimp. They were big and pretty good. The fried rice was pretty blah and and egg roll was pretty bad. It was all weird and soggy and had big chunks of mushy vegetables. However, the fortune cookies they served were some of the best I’ve ever had. So fresh and crunchy. Yum.

The other night, I tried out some Trader Joe’s eats – chicken masala and garlic naan, both from the freezer aisle. The chicken wasn’t bad, it was a bit watered down though. It comes with brown rice which didn’t do it for me. When I eat indian food, I just expect basmati rice. It would have been much better with just normal basmati rice. The brown rice, especially since it was frozen and then nuked, was quite soggy. Now the naan! It was so good! Yes, it’s frozen, but after you heat it up in the overn for just a few minutes, it really does taste fresh! Like it just came out of whatever oven naan is normally made in. I will definitely be buying the naan again! I could eat it just by itself.

Food – The Company Way

I used to work at a company that gave us free lunch every day. And by free I mean subsidized, so either free or nearly free, depending on how much you decided to eat. It was luxurious. Not because the food was particularly great, but because you never had to worry about packing a lunch, worrying about where to go out for lunch, or wondering if you should take your leftovers into work the next day. The caf was always there, enticing you with their salad bar, sandwich station, entree line, hot grill line, and soups. You could rely on it. Plus it saved you a ton of cash.

In the first few years they basically served typical american cafeteria fare. Towards the latter years, after they changed vendors, the food started getting a bit more interesting. Some days we had sushi or chinese. They even had indian and middle eastern! They were trying to introduce some pseudo-internationalized cuisine onto unsuspecting American suburbanite office drones. And I admired them for it.

My new company feeds us twice a week. On Wednesdays it varies from restaurant or caterer. on Fridays it’s pizza from Tony A’s. But a few common themes abound through our free lunches – vegetarians and dieters, you’re screwed. It’s not the healthiest in the world, and always meat-laden. Last summer on Fridays was my favorite day of the week because of Chef Donald. That’s right, we had a chef that came in on Fridays that grilled for us. It was unbelievable what that man could do with onions and garlic, his main staple ingredients, and whatever meat they brought in that day. I wish it was summer again, because damn, Chef Donald’s meals were the best.

Today was Tony A’s as usual. And I always eat the same pizza – Bacon Burger. Bacon Burger pizza you say? It has everything you love – bacon, ground beef, caramelized onions, and hot peppers. How can you go wrong? After all, everything tastes better with bacon. The onions on this pizza…. Man! I don’t know what kind of crack they sprinkle on it, but I could eat it straight from a bowl.

I didn’t eat the pizza today though. Last Sunday I had decided to make chili. It was a particularly cold day, and on cold days, there’s nothing better than pho or chili. I’d had pho on Saturday (more on that later), so I decided to make chili. I made a giant vat of it and ate the last bits of it today. Mmm, mmm, good.

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