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Everything posted by jmsaul

  1. I'm late to the party, but I'm a regular traveler to the Twin Cities. Some of my favorites are: Peninsula (Malaysian) http://www.peninsulamalaysiancuisine.com/ Qoraxlow (Somali) Doesn't have a website, but I'm talking about the one on Lake St.: http://maps.google.com/maps/place?oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&um=1&ie=UTF-8&q=qoraxlow+minneapolis&fb=1&gl=us&hq=qoraxlow&hnear=Minneapolis,+MN&cid=17439904221102145333 Pho Tau Bay (Vietnamese) http://www.photaubay.us/
  2. Joe here; it was great seeing all of you at the Szechuan banquet Thursday night! Lisa put her photos from it up here: I haven't had a chance to scan the handwritten menu yet (the one with Chinese as well as English), but here are the dishes I think we got: Cold dishes: * Sichuan-style spicy beef stew (not actually a stew) * Pork stomach in spicy sauce * Spicy firm tofu * Steamed chicken in spicy Sichuan sauce * Spicy cucumber salad Hot dishes: * Spicy crabs * Stir-fried jumbo shrimp in spicy sauce * Scallops in spicy Sichuan sauce * Sliced fish in boiled Sichuan-style sauce * Xin Jiang-style chicken * Cumin lamb * Beef with pepper in black sauce * Pork in ginger and garlic sauce * Ma po tofu * Stir-fried string beans * Pork with pickled chilis We'll never know what the noodle dish was going to be, because we told them we really couldn't eat it... ;-)
  3. I'm going to be in London over the next couple weeks, and had planned to visit Bar Shu -- until I found out it was closed for renovations. I've learned that web searches on this topic don't pan out, so I'd like to ask: what are the best places for Sichuan food in London right now? Thanks!
  4. I live right here in Sacramento and I am an ethnic Chinese. Sorry to say I have not found any genuine Sichuan food. If you find it, please let me know. I only know of some in San Francisco and Richmond. ← Any other good Chinese restaurants in Sacramento? Or alternatively, how far is Richmond and what's there? Thanks!
  5. I'm going to be in Santa Barbara and Sacramento next week on business, and I'm looking for interesting places to eat. What I like the most are authentic and unusual ethnic options: genuine Sichuan food, great Central American, rare (for the US) cuisines like Indonesian, etc. Any advice or recommendations would be greatly appreciated!
  6. Wouldn't have had time to range out into the country, but we did wind up going for lunch to Puckett's Grocery and Restaurant in downtown Franklin -- their cherrywood-smoked ribs are the best ribs I've ever had in my life: http://www.puckettsgrocery.com/about.htm Next time I fly down there, I'm going to rent a car (if work won't pay for it, I will) and allow myself more time to check the area out.
  7. Sadly, Northwest hosed me. I just got in, so it's the hotel restaurant (aargh!) for me tonight. Maybe I'll get to try something decent tomorrow.
  8. Thanks very much! I don't know what I'll be able to do during the day tomorrow, since I have to be at the airport in the late afternoon, but I'll see what I can accomplish...
  9. I've got a last minute business trip to Nashville (Franklin actually). I'm flying out in a few hours, and will arrive by 8pm tonight (Sunday). I'll read this as soon as I get to the airport. Is there any place I can go tonight that's got decent Southern cooking? I don't mind cab fare, and I'm not locked into fine dining (if there's some hole in the wall in a questionable neighborhood with awesome food I'm happy to go there). Thanks for any help you can give!
  10. We also went there when we were in Madrid. The wine was, well, different -- but the shrimp were great. Our photos are here: http://www.kitchenchick.com/2007/08/la-casa-del-abu.html
  11. Hey! I've been there! It was about 2 minutes from our hotel! (Sorry, just amazed that out of all the restaurants in HK, you happened to go to one I've actually been to!)
  12. Here's a good recipe -- of sorts -- for Pad Thai, with a lot of advice about how to make it turn out well: http://chezpim.typepad.com/blogs/2007/01/p...hai_for_be.html
  13. Wow. Next trip to China... Did you take any notes in your Sichuan cooking class? If so, any chance of your posting them?
  14. Happy to help! I agree; the peppercorns we had in China, even in ground form, were much more intense than the ones we can get here. I had a powdered seasoning in a department store court in Zheng Zhou (I was with Kitchen Chick; I'm her husband) that made me think I was having a stroke or something. It was a completely unfamiliar sensation, and we've been cooking with Sichuan peppercorns for more than a decade. I just hadn't had any good ones up to that point.
  15. It looks like pickled green beans, chopped up. They're amazingly good. Here's an example (at right, obviously) from a Sichuan restaurant in LA: And here's what they look like stir-fried with ground pork (homemade -- recipe and discussion here):
  16. I'm starting to really get into it, but I think I still lean slightly toward the Sichuan one. And modest, eh? That pork sounds great. We'll have to try it... I realize it's off topic for the Chinese area, but can you point me to some good Malaysian recipes? I'd like to try those, and there are no Malaysian restaurants around here...
  17. Over at our house, we love Land of Plenty too, and we've done quite a few of the dishes. (If you're curious, some photos are here. Not the step by step stuff Ah Leung does, just shots of the finished products.) We've started doing some of the Hunan recipes -- so far, we've done one of the versions of General Tso's chicken, a chicken and cilantro dish, a beef and potato stew, and home-style tofu. They've all been great (except the General Tso's, which wasn't quite so interesting). I do have to admit to liking Sichuan cooking more, possibly because of an addiction to Sichuan peppercorns, but also possibly because one unifying feature of Hunan cooking so far appears to be a complete lack of sugar, and I'm more adapted to having a bit of sweet with my spicy. On the other hand, I like black beans just fine, and so do they. That beef and potato stew, by the way, benefits from sitting overnight. We had it for lunches for a couple days afterward, and it just got better and better... Here's my personal favorite from Land of Plenty, Hot and Numbing Shrimp. This plate was empty about 60 seconds after the photo was taken:
  18. I've also been the customer waiting for that table -- with a group, and a reservation that we showed up on time for, and no table for an hour and a half. The staff made it clear that they couldn't disturb the group that was camping at the table, and that they didn't have anywhere else to seat us. They didn't offer us anything. What they effectively did is sacrifice our goodwill to preserve the goodwill of the folks at the table. I don't know if it worked for them, but it worked on us; we never went back.
  19. This is lovely. And I'm glad that good food can be found in Indianapolis if you know where to look. I may ask you for recommendations at some point. I go to a conference there every year at the convention center, and so far the only standouts I've found are St. Elmo's steakhouse and a nice sushi place.
  20. Interestingly, I was out in L.A. this weekend and tried to get it at the markets in Chinatown. It took me several tries before I found someone who understood what I was asking for (I hadn't printed out the thread, and I don't know the tones) -- and he told me that it's now banned from importation to the US. No idea why. He listed a couple other things that are also banned, including snake wine , but I don't think Du Kang's ingredients are anywhere near that exotic. He did say I might be able to get it in New York, "where they have more kinds of alcohol." Strange...
  21. Well, I'm a long-time Ann Arborite, and a restaurant geek whose wife is a food blogger, so (as it happens ) I've been to every Chinese restaurant in Ann Arbor. In my opinion, Ann Arbor has one excellent Hong Kong-style restaurant (Great Lake Chinese Seafood), and that's it. The other places aren't anything truly special, though some are certainly quite good and worth eating at if you live here. So if you have something you can describe as a "cluster" of excellent Chinese restaurants, you're ahead of us. But that's no shock, since you've got one of the largest urban areas in the US and a HUGE Chinese population. That out of the way, my wife and I are going to be in LA for a couple days, and I'm hoping to get advice on three things. We won't have a lot of time, so it's pretty much one shot on any single type of restaurant: 1. The best (as in most authentic) Szechuan restaurant in the area (we're willing to drive) -- is this Chung King? (Had the cuisine in Beijing, hooked for life...) 2. The best (as in not only most authentic, but we'll see things we haven't seen before -- and we've traveled a lot) place for Dim Sum in the area 3. What I really should be asking about in Chinese restaurants -- i.e. is there a restaurant with a regional style available here that I haven't even thought to ask about? (I see that Islamic Chinese restaurant mentioned above, for example... we had some Islamic Chinese food in Zheng Zhou and in Xian, but I recognize this might be better). Thanks for any help you can give!
  22. Yes, Du Kang (杜康) Looks like this? ← Yes! That's a different shape of clay bottle -- the one we had was shaped like a drinking gourd -- but I'm sure that's the stuff! Is it a regional thing? Do you know whether it's imported to the US?
  23. If I can be forgiven a slight side excursion: Are any of you familiar with a liquor called something like "Du Kang"? When I was in Zheng Zhou, we had a few bottles of it, and it was actually very nice. Sadly, we didn't bring any home. I wouldn't mind having it again. The best one we tried was actually sold in a clay jug of sorts, where you had to break the top off.
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