BL Bites - Culinary Adventures of an Indie Band, Chapter 1

How do you take something that's been done a million times and make it interesting? How do you add a fresh angle? The simple answer is that you don't - you give it a silly name and hope that nobody notices. So, after scraping the bottom of the wordplay barrel (Bengal Tasters? Gourmet Lancers?) it's my pleasure to welcome you to Chapter 1 of an idea that was met with a lukewarm reception on the band WhatsApp: BL Bites. In a move that has been widely described as *doubtful silence*, this series will transport you to the farthest corners of England on a voyage of comestible discovery and questionable synonyms. As a plucky young(?) Indie band adventuring around the country, we have the opportunity to visit a uniquely varied selection of eateries, some of which are too good not to share. So, if you've made it this far, please dig in, and don't leave mean comments because I'm not very thick-skinned. It's a little-known secret that I am a something of a pizza-crazed fool, so where better to start than a pizza place? Many years ago, before "Aidan + BL" was a going concern, we were invited to play at the VICE-run venue Birthdays (sadly now closed) in Dalston. The gap between soundcheck and performance usually sits nicely at teatime, so we headed a few doors down, on the recommendation of the sound man, to Mangal Turkish Pizza. There are two varieties of Turkish Pizza: Pide and Lahmacun. Despite the different shape - the Pide long and thin with folded edges, and the Lahmacun more closely resembling the familiar Western Pizza - each boasts a crispy flatbread base, and toppings such as minced lamb/beef, spinach, and cheeses made from sheep's milk. We each ordered a different Pide, and shared the slices of fragrant, crispy, cheese-topped pizza around. Each flavour was as delicious as the next, and we left satisfied and, in my case, excited.


Perhaps the years have furnished me with rose-tinted glasses, but there's no escaping the fact that I'm still talking about those Pides today. See you soon and keep on eatin'. Max

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Mangal Turkish Pizza is located at 27 Stoke Newington Rd, Dalston, N16 8BJ.


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