With my contract with the university coming to an end, I’ve become increasingly attached to my go to lunch spot. Truth be told, since I discovered Fuel for Gold, other food vendors have cease to exist. Since 2012, I’ve eaten here at least once a day.
To date, my favourite lunch specials include: Roast Chicken ($10.50); Coconut Chicken ($10.50); and the Maple Glazed Salmon ($10.50). Portions are filling. For ten dollars, you get a big piece of protein, a side of couscous or brown rice, and steamed vegetables. I found out from Chef Fauzy Azouz that he paired up with a nutritionist to ensure the food meets the dietary needs of their students.
One thing I’ve noticed is that protein and vegetables are never overcooked. Azouz informed me it is due to the fact that all the meat and seafood are brought in fresh, never frozen. Secondly, he uses multiple cooking methods to ensure the meat doesn’t dry out. For example, he steams the chicken and then roasts it in the oven for colour and flavour. As for the salmon, because it is brought in fresh, it won’t shrink when steamed.
I also appreciate that Fuel for Gold doesn’t overcook their vegetables. Big heads of broccoli, carrots, and chunks of green and red peppers remain crunchy. The vegetables are simply steamed and dressed lightly with lemon juice or a tangy seasoning. Azouz noted that all the vegetable and fruits are brought in from local farmers, and their staff peels and cuts it, to ensure students are getting the freshest and healthiest produce. On Sundays, Azouz shops at the farmers market to personally pick out the best of the bunch.
The homemade soups are killer. My top three picks include: lemon chicken and rice; dairy free clam chowder; and borscht. The latter was a pretty ruby hue, filled with shredded red cabbage, bits of potatoes, with a deep but subtle heat.
Perhaps Azouz will hire me to work at Fuel for Gold, so that I can learn his recipes. I’m particularly fond of his quinoa and wild rice salads. In any case, I’m hoping he will depart some of his cooking tips before I leave.