Resto review: Village Mangal

Last weekend I decided to go home and take a few days absolutely off from university work. To spend time in the sun (if it came out), spend some time with my family, and not feel guilty for not opening any academic files on my computer. I did check my emails though, and open my provisional exam timetable, which was a mélange of all the things I hoped wouldn’t happen for my finals. Hey ho.

We received our dose of sun when we went to Dorset on Friday for a coastal walk. The sun sang, the wind warbled and the sea sucked at the cliffs below us. As has occurred on numerous previous walks, we ended up on the wrong side of the fence and had to contort ourselves over barbed wire, hefting the dog over as well.

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On the way home Dad suggested we went via Village Mangal, a restaurant and takeaway serving Turkish food. My parents really like it – cheerful, cheap and delicious. While I have never eaten in the restaurant it is always humming with full tables and the people working there are friendly. Trip Advisor, for what it’s worth, names it number 2 out of 64 Amersham restaurants and gives it a 4.5/5.

One hurdle we had to jump over was that there is no menu online so we had to rack our brains and remember what we ordered the last time. We remembered we ordered the aubergine imam, a kind of casserole and a pide, which is flatbread topped with vegetables and cheese. Second hurdle emerged during the phone call, which sounded like there was a curtain pulled across my speaker, but both sides of the telephone persevered and we arrived home with a hot bag of food.

The soft flesh of the imam aubergine was sweet, unctuous, and submerged in a herby tomato sauce, topped with cheese that pulled apart with a resistance that would reverberate in your heartstrings. The pide box opened to reveal slices of flatbread with cheese, spinach, peppers and other diced veg, full of comforting flavour. A beautiful, simple dish without the puddles of luminescent oil you slop through in other takeaway pizza places. My family enjoyed the guvec which they had with chicken. When I picked up a menu I saw they had a lot of vegetarian dishes included veggie kebabs which I’d love to try if I come back. Three dishes came to 22 squids with complimentary flatbread, dips and a salad (pickled red cabbage you’re a real friend of mine). Constructive crit: pide, please come a bit warmer. However, I think this is an excellent place to eat in Amersham.

I balanced out my sunwalk with a rainwalk on Sunday. It culminated in a scramble up a dell. I unquestioningly followed my brother up a steep slope that turned into a vertical mud slide. I was about half a metre away from victory when my feet slid away from me and I landed on my front, holding onto a pitifully small root with my nails while my family took some photos of me. Eventually my brother reached down and hauled me up to a crouching position and then propelled me up the precipice by my bottom. Anyway, it was well worth the muddy hands and the muddy stomach.

 

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