I’ve struggled with weight all my life. It’s been on so many ups and downs that I’ve lost track, and ironically, food has become the only constant. And it’s been especially hard lately – part of the joy of a food blog is well, that you get to eat, and eat well, and that can sometimes not be very good for the “diet”. For health reasons I decided to lose a bit of weight. eat better and exercise more, and through just being a little more aware of what I eat, I’ve lost 12kg, and thought it was time for a no-holds-barred cheat day, in the form of a 24 hour food crawl.
Yes, 24 whole hours of unrestricted eating. Anything I want, when I want it, and as much of it as I want.
So here’s what I chose to do with my 24 hours. 10 eateries and countless mouthfuls later, I’m finally full and barely recovered from the resulting food coma.
Cheat day. captain’s log:
The alarm on my phone goes off. It’s dark and cool outside, and I can’t explain just how tempting it is to snuggle right back into the blankets. BUT THERE’S NO TIME FOR SLEEP, IT’S TIME TO EAT!
I’m straightening my hair at 4 in the frickin’ morning. How do other women do this all day every day?
I’m starting to think that only reason why I should be up this early on a Saturday is if I was going to bake the damned bread for breakfast myself.
5:30 am – Cheese Platter for Breakfast!
Breakfast is finally on the table, and I can’t even hold my hands still enough to take a proper photo because I’M SO EXCITED TO BE EATING CHEESE!!! There is Tallegio, a light delicate washed rind, Fromager D’affinois, a double cream french cheese, and a creamy blue. Fruit, because I need a palate cleanser, and Brasserie Bread’s Caramelised Garlic Bread.
I haven’t had soft cheese in so long that I forgot that this is the true definition of heaven on earth.
And that bread. OH THAT BREAD. Brasserie Bread has really outdone themselves on this caramelised garlic bread. “Garlic…caramelised in a sugar syrup…balsamic…Italian style loaf”.
I stop reading because this is all I need to know.
We are on the train on the way to Newtown for a bacon-filled breakfast at Cuckoo Callay. The Boy asks me yet again why he’s up this early on his day off. I tell him it’s because we must eat, and he gives me a glassy blank stare. It’s going to be a fun day.
Okay. So maybe I should’ve called ahead. They open at 8, not 7. Dammit.
We have ordered. Selfie while waiting for our food!
8:30am – Cuckoo Callay
We order the Ya Bacon Me Crazy, $20. It’s basically bacon and waffles, topped with maple syrup, bacon ice cream, and chocolate dipped bacon. And because I love milkshakes and Bloody Marys, we get the Bloody Bacon Mary and Peanut Butter and Jelly Milkshake, too. It’s a fantastically sweet way to start the day, and believe it or not, I could have done with MORE BACON. The Bacon Bloody Mary was nicely balanced, but the cold drink with the hot bacon means that there was just at teeny tiny layer of bacon fat on top of my drink. Not entirely a bad thing, but bacon is best when it’s hot I think.
324b Newtown Train Station
Newtown, NSW 2042
Phone: 02 9557 7006
We have been baconed. A good showing from Cuckoo Callay, and the Bloody Bacon Mary was my favourite.
Now, on to doughnuts! And that food coma.
9:55am – Glazed Doughnuts
Red Velvet Doughnut, from Glazed Doughnuts
DOUGHNUTS. GLORIOUS DONUTS. Picked up some amazingly delicious ones from Glazed Doughnuts at the Bondi Markets. I feel a bit like a piggy surrounded by all these fit people. But the call of amazing sweet treats is too loud to resist. My absolute favourite doughnut of the bunch was the Watermelon and Pistachio, followed closely by the Apple Pie. The glaze on the Watermelon and Pistachio doughnut is made with real watermelon juice, resulting in a sweet, floral fragrance, and a soft, pillowy doughnut that isn’t too cloyingly sweet. The Apple Pie is something that Glazed Doughnuts makes for the Bondi Markets only, and it’s filled with a chunky apple jam, and topped with a luxurious crumble.
I wish I didn’t have to share this with The Boy.
Bondi Markets, Campbell Parade
Bondi Beach, NSW 2026
Doughnuts for this post were provided by Glazed Doughnuts.
10.20am – Pure Pops
The sun is coming on strong, like a drunk, desperate man (or woman!) at a singles’ bar. Oooh look, popsicle!
Mmm. Icy pole. Watermelon and strawberry to be exact. Crazy sweet, but it’s fruit, so it’s good for you right? Yes. It’s good for you. The flavours are amazingly clean and straightforward, and we are soon licking sticky fingers.
I also think it’s pretty cool that Purepops seem to have taken popsicles to the next level, with options for alcoholic mini ice pops being catered for your next party. Pretty cool right?
Bondi Markets, Campbell Parade
Bondi Beach, NSW 2026
Phone: 0419 699 198
I’ve come to the strange realisation that I’m no longer hungry, but not actually full.
What is this? I’ve been going from food stop to food stop since 5 this morning and I’m not full? What is this sorcery?
12:00nn – Mappen
Since we were in Bondi, I took the opportunity to drop by Mappen for a comforting bowl of Ontama Bukkake Udon. *Giggles*
Thick udon noodles sit in a salty tsukedashi sauce, and the soft, jelly-like ontama egg mixes into a thick sauce that coats every strand. The crispy tempura flakes add a lovely crunch, and a light squeeze of garlic chilli gives me the kick to keep going.
At this point, The Boy looks at me like I’m crazy. He doesn’t understand how I’m still eating.
183 Oxford St
Bondi Junction, NSW 2022
Phone: 02 9388 0609
1:30pm – Chatime
Time for a Chatime, because since I’ve started watching my food intake, bubble tea has been downgraded from a ‘sometimes food’ to a ‘rare treat’.
I get the my usual order: a Roasted Milk Tea with Grass Jelly, no ice. I go for no sugar this time, because I feel a bit sugared out. WRONG. Should’ve gotten it with some sugar instead of no sugar, because all that remains on my palate is a film of fat, I’m assuming from the milk. No time to dwell on it though, because it’s time to head back towards the beach, and towards hot wings.
1:50pm – The Stuffed Beaver Dining Parlour
From my previous visits, The Stuffed Beaver has served up the hottest I’ve had in Sydney, and so SO addictive. I’ve been craving this tangy, chilli hit since, and I just can’t contain my excitement at getting my fingers on these red hot wings again.
This time, they are quite a bit less spicy than I remembered, but some how more delicious! Incredibly tangy, and finger lickin’ good. No need for the accompanying ranch sauce, as amazing as it is. Next time, I’ll order it extra spicy.
Pro tip: order a side of poutine – a genius Canadian dish of chips and gravy and cheese curds – and mop up the remaining hot sauce with the chips from the bottom of the basket. Your tastebuds will thank you.
The Stuffed Beaver Dining Parlour
271 Bondi Rd
Bondi, NSW 2026
Phone: 02 9130 3002
Insatiable Munchies dined as guests of The Stuffed Beaver Dining Parlour.
2:30pm – 11 hr check-in
We’ve been at it for 11 hours, and it’s been so good!! The day has been surprisingly easy and relaxed, as eating should be.
This day is shaping up to be the BEST DAY EVER!!!
3:30pm – Sushi Rio
Cheat day or not, I will take up ANY reason to eat sushi in all its forms. Sushi Rio in Bondi was the most convenient – Umi Zushi was just out of my reach! – and they do a pretty good Salmon and Salmon Roe Donburi. Good topping to rice ratio, though I would minus points because the rice was warm. The Salmon and Flying Fish Roe Nigiri off the train was a surprise favourite, though, with a secret layer of mayonnaise underneath the flying fish roe!!
The only way to elevate the experience of Japanese mayo is to make it a surprise.
You can’t go wrong with mayo and salmon and fish roe. Just sayin’.
Shop 7, 339 Sussex St
Sydney, NSW 2000
Phone: 02 9261 2388
4:20pm – Coffee Break
And then on to iced coffee, because after about 12 hours of eating, The Boy is resisting my efforts to stuff in more eating stops. The coffee is a good way to stay awake, I guess, and at least he submits to my request for a 12th hour selfie.
Happy smiles!!! Dead eyes though. Dead, food coma eyes.
5:30pm – Pei Modern
Next stop, Pei Modern. I went there specifically to get the Holmbrae Chicken, but oh lord the Wood Fired Mussels took out the favourite of the day. Recommended by our waiter, Oscar, these mussels are not available all the time, and are on the specials menu only. Sad, because between a slight aroma of smoke and the briny sea, the bacon bits, corn, and buttery butter sauce, this is perfection in a dish. I’m absolutely loving it!!
The Burrata with Figs and Kohlrabi was also pretty good, with its soft curd interior spilling onto sweet figs and the delicate radish-like kohlrabi. I couldn’t get a full handle on the jersey milk flavour of the burrata though, it was served at the same time as the mussels, which overpowers everything else once it gets set down on the table, like a hot woman in a killer dress entering the room.
In Four Seasons Hotel
199 George St Sydney, NSW 2000
Phone: 02 9250 3160
Insatiable Munchies dined as guests of Pei Modern.
Insatiable Munchies dined as guests of Pei Modern.
7:30pm – 15 Hour check-in
To the water for some fresh air, because we have slight eating fatigue.
The Boy is fading fast, and so am I. We aren’t just battling the urge to nap because all the blood from our extremities have rushed towards our bellies, no, we are actually combatting physical tiredness. As exciting as it is to spend 24 hours doing something so hedonistic and decadent, it’s actually hard to keep going, especially without sleep, nap, or a shower. Next time, I’m packing a bag and taking a shower at the Prince Alfred Park Pool.
8:30pm – Central
Off towards Central, to Khao San, a Thai restaurant on Pitt Street that has a little street cart for takeaway snacks and sweets. I absolutely love their rice flour and salted radish dumplings. These little pops of savoury goodness are served with lettuce and fresh bird’s eye chilli on the side, and is all sorts of hot and salty and fresh all at once.
That chilli hit is just what I need to kick the fatigue and food coma!
9:00pm – Khao San, Haymarket
They’re sold out. FML.
9:30pm – House of Crabs
So on to House of Crabs, for Lobster Fries! Shoestring fries, lobster gravy, cheese, bacon and corn. This takes a cheat day staple to a whole ‘nuther level. It could have done with a bit more gravy, but that thick shellfish flavours are making my tastebuds sing. YES.
House of Crabs
Upstairs at The Norfolk Hotel
Level 1, 305 Cleveland Street
Redfern, NSW 02016
Phone: 02 9699 3177
Insatiable Munchies dined as guests of the House of Crabs.
11:00pm – We need a walk
We are about to topple over, and we so need a walk. Conveniently so, because there public transport seems to be a convoluted mess back to Haymarket. I’m sure a walk would do us good – fresh air, blood pumping through our veins…sweat matting my hair. Summer is probably a bad day to eat till you get the sweats, but at this point, I don’t know what is real and what is delirious hallucination anymore. Either way, I’m looking forward to suckling pig at the end of the walk!!
12:00 midnight – Golden Century
HOW IS GOLDEN CENTURY SO PACKED?! We go up to the counter and ask for a table for two…It’s going to be at least 45 minutes. WHYYYY.
For the sake of suckling pig, we put our name down and give it a go. It does seem like a suicide mission, though, groups of 20 are piling into the restaurant, and they all look really hungry.
1:00am – Kanzi Fashion Cafe
We give up. Suckling Pig seems to be a distant dream now as I crave something cold and sweet to keep me awake. So we choose to go downstairs instead, abandoning our mission for crispy pork, and order a Melon Bingsoo.
Honeydew balls, vanilla ice cream, and a honeydew popsicle makes up this green mountain of sugar and ice, and it’s here that I call it a day. The freshness of the melon perks me up slightly, and the sugar from the popsicle, ice cream and evaporated milk gives me just enough energy to go home. We finish most of it, but really couldn’t be bothered digging into the honeydew half to finish it completely.
Kanzi Fashion Cafe
393-399 Sussex St
Haymarket, NSW 2000
Mister Gee’s Burger Truck
It can’t be a cheat day without Mister Gee’s. Ever since I found my way to the once quiet car wash that this food truck was parked on, I’ve proudly declared that these are my favourite burgers in Sydney. Due to the queues, it’s a bit hard to fit this into our hectic eating schedule, but I went early, because I just couldn’t give up any reason to have these burgers. The Cheese Boogie is still my favourite burger from Mister Gee’s, but the Truffe, with all its aroma of truffles and silky mayo, comes in a close second. Very nice.
And of course, dirty fries, because I can’t get enough of these shoestring fries covered in salsa and american cheese. The Boy and I fought over every last fry, down to the bottom of the cardboard box. Delicious.
Mister Gee Burger Truck
55a Shaftesbury Rd
Burwood, NSW 2134
Phone: 0411 092 663
Insatiable Munchies dined as guests of Mister Gee’s Burger Truck
If Pu’er wasn’t off my eating route, I would’ve dropped by for these Wagyu Beef Tacos. Full of intense beefy flavour and tender from the crazy marbling streaking through the meat, these savoury buns are heaven with every bite. I’m still thinking about them since the last time I went there – I think it’s time to arrange a special trip!