Greetings from Sydney, Australia! I’m entering day 5 of my 14-day quarantine, and I’m happy to report I haven’t gone crazy just yet. I fill my days with writing, doing my online coding job, paying visits to my makeshift home gym, and watching TV (Selling Sunsets is my recent kick). I make a little to-do list each morning with achievable tasks, and, in typical Katie fashion, I am more or less productive all day.
After 6 months of living a go-go-go lifestyle with unrelenting stress and anxiety, it’s admittedly nice to be forced to stop and just chill out. There are no errands to run, there’s no train to catch, and I don’t feel any guilt for not seizing a beautiful day. I’m stuck with absolutely no where to go and nothing to do for the first time in my entire life, and you know what? I’m doing okay.
Sure, my legs long to get more than 12 steps in a row and I can’t help but jealously stare at the people freely walking below, but things could be worse.
In terms of food, I was expecting to get United Airlines quality meals that came in shrink wrap with a few slivers of protein over greasy carbs. But I am happy to report the food has exceeded my expectations, and breakfast, lunch, and dinner are the highlights of my days.
At 8:30am, 12:30pm, and 6:30pm, I hear a knock followed by a “food’s here!” I look through the peephole to be sure the hallway is empty (have to prevent the spread afterall) before excitedly grabbing the paper bag to see what goodies await.
From blueberry pancakes to lamb Rogan Josh, the kitchen at the Amora Hotel pumps out a wide range of cuisines, and I’m yet to have something I haven’t enjoyed!
So, let me take you through my Amora hotel Covid-19 food journey thus far…
This was my first quarantine breakfast, and it certainly set the bar high. It featured grilled bread topped with hummus, tabouleh, spicy sausage, and two eggs with a side of cereal, a banana, and mini muffin. It wasn’t too oily and the eggs were cooked just right with soft yolks that didn’t crumble apart.
The butter chicken was delightfully tender with a tickle of spice, the side cauliflower curry had a nice dose of turmeric, and the beans were crisp and light with a touch of citrus, making for a solid day one lunch.
Teriyaki Glazed Salmon
I was shocked to find a beautiful piece of salmon on my doorstep for dinner. It was slightly overcooked, but the teriyaki glaze had a good balance of tang to salt with a hint of sweetness. The green beans were too rubbery for my liking, but I scarfed them down regardless to get in some greens for the day. There was a small piece of carrot cake for dessert that was missing warm spices like nutmeg and cinnamon, but there were no raisins, and I guess I can say it is the best carrot cake I’ve had in Sydney!
Lamb Rogan Josh
I love Indian food and this lamb Rogan Josh over rice pilaf with a cucumber side salad hit the spot. The tender meat was packed full of flavor with ample garlic and a sharp bite of ginger to compliment the warm hints of cardamon and cinnamon. While it could have been spicier, I also get that not all share my love of tear inducing heat.
An Aussie Breakfast
Each culture seems to have a unique breakfast, and apparently this is it for Australia. Eggs, sausage, and sautéed spinach and mushrooms with a croissant, pear, and yogurt. It was straightforward and simple, hitting all the checkmarks for what you want in a breakfast.
Som Yum with Roast Beef
I love Thai food, and I really love papaya salad. In fact, let me flex my travel muscles a bit and inform you that I took a cooking class in Bangkok where I learned how to make authentic papaya salad. The secret lies in the tamarind juice, fish sauce, and thai chilis, which blend together for a spicy, yet sweet flavor profile that compliments the crunchy raw papaya.
Now that I’m done bragging, this lunch featured a crisp bed of greens with a papaya salad topped with finely sliced roast beef. The papaya salad was lacking that hint of spice, but the beef was tender without being too fatty, making for a nice light lunch.
Day three, I was starting to feel a bit lonely and sad as I was missing the feeling of the sun, the breeze, and human contact. Pizza is a great comfort food, and while it wasn’t particularly wowing, it put a smile on my face and felt like a hug. I will admit I ate the entire thing while watching my neighbor in the adjacent apartment building running on a treadmill…
I opened the box on day four to reveal something familiar: an egg and bacon roll. It came with a side of sausage, hash browns, yogurt, a banana, and a mini muffin. It tasted exactly like any egg roll you’d whip up at home, and was a good energy boost to start the day.
In my normal diet, I eat vegetables at breakfast, lunch and dinner. My system was missing a good dose of green, and I was ecstatic to find a lovely chicken salad for lunch on day four. The chicken was tender and juicy, and the tabbouleh added a crisp freshness with plenty of parsley and mint.
Wrapping things up….
I’m four days down with ten to go. Stay tuned for how I fare!