When was the last time you had really tasty, delicious, wholesome food that you felt good about eating? With so much competition in Sydney, many restaurants are cutting corners with low quality, processed foods that are questionably sourced, but there’s one woman in this city who’s keeping it real, making food from the heart and cooking for the bellies, not the money. That woman is Monica, the one woman show of Lulu’s Sydney, and her food is some of the best I’ve had this year.
Lulus serves Mexican and Southern American food including Tamales, a popular Mexican dish, but it’s unlike Mexican food as you know it. Italian born Monica grew up with food all her life, and during her time in the States record collection on the road, she fell in love with the food that brought her the most comfort: the food she now serves in her kitchen. Lulu
Trashy Nachos with tortilla chips, chipotle chickpea chill, avocado crema, homemade spicy pickles, charred corn and black bean salsa.
Monica starts us off with what she loves to call Trashy nachos, however there is certainly nothing trashy about these. Unlike the popular Loaded Nachos, these nachos don’t go soggy under all the weight and liquids, and the combination of flavours and textures really bring the experience together.
Did you know it’s also VEGAN?
My favourite part about these nachos was the delicious spicy pickles, which incidentally you can buy in the jar.
Plantain Chips with fresh pico de gallo
First of all, no shame if you 1) don’t know what plantain is, and 2) or what pico de gallo is.
A plantain is a fruit, looks like a banana when it’s raw, but really isn’t. They are starchier, lower in sugar, almost potato like when they are cooked.
Pico de Gallo, if you haven’t judged from the picture above, is a type of salsa. It differs from regular salsa because it tends to be thicker.
I really enjoyed these Plantain chips. They were chunky, crunchy, and the pico de gallo was so fresh and vibrant. Nothing to criticise, except I wish there were MORE!
Chipotle Pork Tamale - 12 hour slow cooked certified free range Chipotle pork shoulder stuffed corn parcel, topped with fresh salsa & cumin lime sour cream.
Warning: You may find yourself inhaling this after one bite.
Seriously guys, if you have not had a Tamale before (like I hadn’t), prepare yourself to be mindblown at how freakin’ good this is. It was kind of like having a serving of mashed potato, except it’s so much creamier and heartier. I couldn’t eat it fast enough, I could go for at 4 of these at once!
Sweet Potato Tamale - Steamed corn parcel stuffed with roasted sweet potato, topped with charred corn and black bean salsa, vegan cumin lime cream & house pickled onions
Another delicious vegan delight! If you thought the Pork one was good, wait until you try this! Whoever says vegan food has to taste terrible seriously needs a bite of this.
Katsu Burger - Crispy certified free range chicken thigh, chilli mayo, pineapple, onions, and coriander salsa on a soft bun.
Do not underestimate this burger, it will be the end of you, in a good way of course!
Perfectly cooked chicken, delicious flavoursome sauce, and the softest white bun, recreates the traditional Katsu sandwich in the only way Monica knows how, the BEST way.
Following the Pork Tamale, this was the next favourite, and it comes highly recommended. This may possibly be my favourite Chicken Katsu burger in Sydney.
Banoffee Coffee Pie
It’s nothing fancy, but it doesn’t need to be. In Monica’s house, it’s all about comfort and great flavours, and you don’t need to bring out all the guns and whistles to make a pie taste good.
Don’t Fear the Reaper Hot Sauce
Last but not least, I want to mention this beautiful hot cause that Monica makes. For those who appreciate spicy food with a bit of heat, and also understands that hot doesn’t have to mean horrible, this may be the sauce for you. I was lucky enough to take a bottle home, and I’ve put it on literally everything I’ve had: dumplings, scrambled eggs, baked beans, pizza, pasta, even just on plain rice - this stuff is amazing, and I think I’m addicted. You can buy it for $12 a bottle, it’s worth every drop.