Monday, 29 November 2010

Mamuska!

Elephant & Castle shopping centre, while a total eyesore, is quite the hub of ethnic food purveyors. Not long ago, Food Stories reported on a taco van selling incredible Mexican street food within its environs. I spotted a Latin American cafe, tables parked in front of it, with happy families slurping on meaty stews. But we weren't there for that. We came for Polish food, in the shape of Mamuska! Don't ask me what that word means, but I was pointed there by a colleague.

The menu revealed startingly good value. Split into soups and starters, pierogi and big plates, we decided to start off our Sunday afternoon with a 50ml glass of vodka for £3 each, from the freezer. Served with a gherkin, it slipped down easily, warming our frozen selves and bringing a rosy tinge back to our cheeks. With it, we ordered kompot, a home-made fruit drink. It was tinged yellow and slightly cloudy; it tasted mildly of undescernible fruit and heavily of cinnamon. I found it tough going.

We decided on sharing a plate of pierogi Mamuska, boiled parcels which were filled with smoked bacon and cabbage served with sour cream. They were comforting, the dough being lighter than it looked and the porky innards of the dumpling shone through.

A pork loin cutlet, breaded and fried was served with roughly mashed potatoes sprinkled with parsley. Salads to choose from included coleslaw or sauerkraut but we settled on beetroot and it provided a tartness and lightened the dish; I had worried that without a sauce it might be dry, but the pork proved tender and juicy.

At no more than £5 a main dish, this bar mleczny was a brilliant tip. Look beyond the ugly exterior - there within the Elephant & Castle shopping centre lives some gems.

EDIT - I have since been told that 'Mamuska' means 'mama'.


Mamuska!

First floor,
Elephant & Castle Shopping Centre,
SE1 6TE

14 comments:

Kavey said...

Ooh, it reminds me a little of a place near where I live, Polska Chatka.
They do lovely pierogi. But their breaded meat dish wasn't as good as yours looks.

tori said...

Have been searching for a decent schnitzel style pork for The Hungry One for a while. Adding to the list- thank you!

Paul said...

Pass by this place every day on the way to work, has a really nice community feel to it. Will have to pop in for an early stodgy dinner one evening!

Nick Baines said...

I'm going to be in London this Saturday and was looking for somewhere to go visit during the day. Elephant and Castle shopping centre it is; and it looks like it is better suited to my wallet than a lot of other laces too. Schnitzel sounds gorgeous.

Pavel said...

Rachunek, proszÄ™! Vodka and Pierogi sounds pretty bloody fantastic to me.

Nadz said...

Worth stopping off at if life takes you there.

The Grubworm said...

Ooo a bit of heavy central european food is just the ticket in this weather and those pirogi do sound good. The schnitzel looks impressive too, it's too easy to dry them out.

It;s good know you can find that sort of fortifying food at the Elephant.

catty said...

I've only made it to Elephant and Castle for the first time last weekend - to visit my friends who live there and call it "The Ghetto". Strangely they mentioned that in the shopping centre there was some good (and good value) food. Wonder if they've been to Mamuska? Must ask. The pork cutlet actually looks really good.

Anonymous said...

Sounds good, I like to read your blog, just added to my favorites ;)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this, it was quite helpful and told a lot.

Anonymous said...

thanks amigo! great post!.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the great information! I would not have discovered this otherwise!

Anonymous said...

Very good post.

paulina.joanna said...

Mamuska means Mum :-)