No it’s not an aftermath of a zombie vending machine raid, but it always seem to be the case here every weekend in school, particularly those staying within the college dorms. The college generally serves 3 meals a day- breakfast, lunch and supper (aka dinner) everyday, with the exception on Saturdays with only brunch served and lunch on Sundays. So this leaves our weekend dinners open which usually result in very interesting findings- It’s not uncommon to see 2 fully loaded adjacent vending machine selling drinks and sweets full and the one dispensing meals completely wiped out on weekends, so as I discover when passing by the college vending area on few occasions. It seems that this whole place runs off vending sandwiches on the weekends, otherwise it’s takeouts, microwaved meals or pizza.
Generally lets face it, not many people like to cook even if you do it will be most probably be worth while cooking for a group or so, which seem to be the case for myself. My group of about 5-6 Singaporeans friends will usually get together on weekends for a cookout where 7-9 pounds can easily feed 4-5 people for dinner.
In a typical bachelor pad setting, our cooking is not really what we call “restaurant standard”, but rather good enough for tasting eating. We tried cooking pasta with beef and meat sauce which turned out like a minced meat contraption with not much tomato. And there was one weekend where we had fried rice which was actually too wet, we ended up passing it off as claypot rice! and I don’t think I would want to talk about the chicken rice weekend!
Cooking at home is not exactly that “cheap” either, though yes the material cost is low, but the time and effort going into actually preparing the food and actually cooking it muddles the justification of the cost (took about 1 hour for our first try). When you though that is it, then there’s the amount of grocery planning and shopping beforehand for the ingredients.
I kinda miss the ease of ready made-food anytime of the day back in Singapore. Not that I actually miss the food but rather the convenience of obtaining them, let be how ridiculously cheap our food is back home compared to here. Chinese food here is expensive, bout $12 SGD for a plate of Singapore fried rice, which is far more expensive than that you get in London as well (maybe due to fewer Chinese stores here).
In a typical English setting here, there are no hawker centers here, only restaurant and eateries which will set you back at least 7 pounds for any dinner. There are no diners here either. Nevertheless, with each passing week with new discoveries town, there are always few popular cheap spots to eat around town, such as pubfood (about 4 pounds for a burger, fries set with drink) or there’s always the sub of the day!