Hop off the train at Mount Druitt or step outside the Westfield Shopping Gulag and you'll find Cleeve Close, a small pedestrian strip with a few takeways, a couple of op shops and two great Filipino joints. The Funky Chicken is our first pick, its a name we can't resist.
The Funky Chicken's interior is less funky and more chicken shop, with a few tables and plenty of punters streaming in and out. Order and pay at the counter.
We're lured in by the bainmaire of delights.
It's not sexy food, but it tastes good, homely and hearty.
Two picks from the bainmarie-of-love is $8.50 with rice, or $5.90 for one choice. Sweet deal. Alison goes for some kind of beef stew with lovely melty carrots on the left. On the right is our absolute favourite Filipino dish of the moment: pork blood stew, we think it's called dinuguan. Pork blood stew may sound grungy to some folks, but it's heavenly, rich and sweet. Mr Shawn is not much of a fan of offal and blood and guts but he loves dinuguan to bits, it's kinda like a very porky version of butter chicken.
Mr Shawn picked the calamari which looked all innocent and healthy in the bainmarie, but it turns out to be deep fried and laclustre. The sisig however is fantastic: super crispy crunchy porky bits livened with fresh salad bits and a citrus tang. If your god and doctor allow it, you must try sisig.
We rarely Google places or restaurants before we visit them, we like a surprise, but it's a long way to Mount Druitt on a random punt (well a reader tip actually, thanks concerned citizen, Alex!).
Google told us to try the sansrival cake, which is theoretically awesome.
We get a huge slice of sansrival cake for $6.50. There's alternating layers of light crunchy, biscuit-y, meringue and light buttery cream, with sliced cashews on top. The texture was wonderful but the buttercream tasted like a mouthful of margarine. Yech. Even Rita the Eta Eater would say there's too much marge in this baby. We're not giving up on sansrival just yet, there must be some killer versions of this around town somewhere. Anybody?
Here's a randomly picked post on sansrival cake at muchamunch.com.
Google tells us pan de coco is coconut bread - we'll get some next time.
Google says pan de leche is a sweet milk roll, not sure what the everlasting rolls are. Excuse us for learning out loud...
Do The Funky Chicken at 15 Cleeve Close, Mount Druitt - 30 seconds walk from the train station and Westfield Shopping Hell. Phone 9625 5602.
Kinda diagonally opposite The Funky Chicken is Pabico, a Filipino grocery shop that also has a bainmarie of love and lots of prepared mystery goodies at the counter.
We takeaway a mystery fish for dinner. The mystery fish is called relyenong bangus, though his mother called him Trevor. Trevor was a milkfish and a laugh-a-minute at Tupperware parties.
Trevor has been gutted and stuffed with minced Trevor, mixed with a few peas and raisins, capsicum and egg. The egg is for binding we guess. He is one big fishy rissole. We heated him up, sliced him and served with steamed veggies.
For dessert we grab some ube (yam) candy.
Purple yam candy tastes great. It tastes like it is made with condensed milk, but the ingredient list is yam, milk, sugar and butter. These were about $4 for 12 pieces. Highly recommended.
Pabico Fast Food and Asian Groceries is just down the road from the The Funky Chicken in Cleeve Close.