With comfort food on the brain, Marissa Carruthers and photographer Charles Fox head to Lazy Gecko to appease the craving.
There are certain times – mainly after consuming too much alcohol the previous night – when comfort food seems like the only way to get through the day. It’s the time when, back home, I’d round up a few friends and head to our local for some good pub grub to soak up the excess booze and make way for a gentle Sunday afternoon of beers.
While there are many venues purporting to serve up dishes that do the job – burgers, fry-ups, fish and chips – there’s certainly only a handful that can claim to do it as well as Lazy Gecko, as we discovered.
Having not tucked into a good plate of fish and chips since visiting my beloved local chippie back in Blighty during last year’s festive trip, I opted for the Lazy Gecko version ($4.75) and prayed I wouldn’t be disappointed. The bacon cheeseburger ($4.75) was also calling our name, as was the big English breakfast ($5.50). Trying to balance our options for the sake of the old cholesterol levels, we also ordered the warm chicken salad ($4.50).
First up was the big English breakfast ($5.50), and they aren’t kidding when they say big. A huge plate loaded with two fried eggs, with thick fluffy white surrounding perfectly-cooked, runny yolks, two rashers of bacon – a rarity when they arrived crispy, as requested – chips, Heinz baked beans, two thick sausages seasoned with a blend of herbs, cooked tomatoes and toast and a pot of tea arrived.
The fish and chips is another hearty meal, and, thankfully, I wasn’t left disappointed. The hand-cut fries are crisp to the crunch and the fish is coated with a crispy, light batter. The accompanying home-made seafood sauce adds a tang to the overall taste and the side salad of lettuce, tomatoes, onion, cucumber and pepper balances out the dryness of the main dish.
The only problem with the beast of a burger was getting my mouth around it. The tower of salad, a thick home-made, delicately seasoned patty and layer of crispy bacon, topped with cheese, sautéed onions and green peppers, sandwiched in a soft, slightly toasted, sesame bread bun, comes with those delicious crunchy, hand-cut chips and a small side salad.
Next up was the salad, and they definitely don’t scrimp on the chicken. Strips of lightly spiced meat sit on a bed of fresh mixed greens, chunks of tomato, tangy Spanish onion and hunks of cucumber. The drizzling of home-made honey-mustard dressing subtly balances the kick of the chicken.
Stuffed, our craving was appeased. With attempts to solve problem number two of the day – no room left for beers – by burning off some calories tickling Lazy Gecko’s adorable pug, Chook, failing, we left vowing to return for what can only be a super Sunday roast (from 1pm, $4.50/$5).
1D, Street 258, Phnom Penh
Tel: 078 786 025
Open daily from 7am to 11pm