LIMIN’ – OLD SPITAFIELDS MARKET
Average price pp: £15-£20
A Trinidadian restaurant has launched in London and to be honest it’s about time! There are some takeaways of this cuisine which have seating areas but nothing I’ve seen compares to layout at Limin, which also has a bar. When Sham, the founder, was developing the concept of Limin’ – the word which is synonymous with socialising – he knew it would be something authentic to represent Trinidadian culture from the food to the décor to the lively soca and calypso music played in the background.
NO jerk or rice and peas will be seen on the menu. In London, Jamaican cuisine runs the Caribbean food scene. Even if a restaurant is not branded as Jamaican, you may see it s traditional dishes on the menu. It’s what’s popular.
Once seated, I asked for ponche de creme unaware that it was a Christmas beverage, so I was about 6 weeks late. Not to worry, I was shown an alternative, the condensed delight cocktail. Served in a small glass, topped with nutmeg shavings and nuts the presentation was art like. The taste was creamy, and the rum was strong. The nuts also added a woody flavour and simultaneously, a lovely crunch.
After, came Trinidad’s most famous dish, that’s right, doubles. If you personally know any Trinis you should be aware that they don’t play about when it comes to their doubles and now neither do I. This is a serious dish. It’s flatbread and chickpea based dish, garnished with thin slices of cucumber. The bread is light and airy, once bitten into all these amazing savoury flavours melt in the mouth. The same with the chickpeas, the spices and pepper can be tasted. Overall it is a well-seasoned dish. I think the cucumber part of doubles is most genius. It adds a cooling effect that balances the other flavours.
Next up, was a plate of salted cod fritters (accras) with a pineapple chutney, pholourie and aloo pies, both served with a tamarind sauce. The saltfish fritters were made into small sphere balls and tasted good. The aloo pies weren’t for my taste, as I’m not a fan of white potatoes and found them to be a bit simple. The pholourie, on the other hand was amazing. It was made from a chickpea flour and has a fluffy texture and is quite soft.
The final dish that I savoured was crab and dumplings. After a few mouthfuls, I wondered where the dumpling was. I then realised that they had been made thin so they had a similar texture to pasta which I thought was pretty cool. The crab was in the dumpling, similar to how a filling is placed into ravioli, and also on top as a sauce. Small crunches could be tasted due to a bit of shell, but all in all it was an interesting and appetising dish.
Salted cod fritters
Crab and dumplings
I am pleased that such a restaurant has opened, especially in a busy and trendy environment like Old Spitafields market. The exhilarating, powerful flavours of Trinidadian fare need to be exposed more and Limin’ is the right place for this. Meeting Sham is an experience in itself and makes dining at Limin’ more worthwhile!