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Krista G

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  1. Krista G


    I had also been curious what people thought of Wakiya, more from a culinary perspective than a scene-y one. After dining there a few nights ago, I’m guessing the lack of food board chatter is likely due to the cuisine being fairly unexciting for anyone who genuinely loves northern Chinese food. Or Chinese food in general, really. Nothing I tried was horrible but it wasn’t terribly exciting either. I also thought of 66 and assumed Wakiya would attract a similar clientele. The soup dumplings were fine, the bang bang chicken could’ve used more punch, tsong tsu, a.k.a. sweet and sour pork was a touch too vinegary and the serving was very small. I liked the soft shell crab with golden sand, which was panko crumbs mixed with black beans and dried red peppers. I didn’t actually think the dishes were intended as “small plates,” though that would make more sense. I just thought it was family style with small portions. Most diners seemed less concerned with dining and more interested in drinking and being seen, so it’s doubtful patrons care if they leave hungry. So, not it’s not a serious dining destination, but it’s not as if the food is prepared wretchedly either. It’s what it is. I have no burning desire to return. More thoughts on Wakiya with photos
  2. Krista G


    I tried Pasita recently and thought it was a great neigborhoody place (though it's not my neighborhood). I only tried the pizzas, not the pasapalos a.k.a. tapas, but I get the feeling that the brick oven pies might be better than the snacks. The wine list is short but I had a good Argentinian malbec. It seems like one of those restaurants that has a lot of potential but doesn't jump out at you. More on Pasita: http://www.project-me.com/2007/02/pasita.html
  3. I agree zebra milk is offbeat, but am I the last to know about horse milk? This weekend I saw a bit on "The F Word" where Gary Rhodes milks a horse and later Gordon Ramsey offers tastes at a supermarket. Horse milk was news to me.
  4. Definitely red snapper. But it is not easy to find a head as large and fleshy as those served at Apollo in Singapore ← Thanks for the responses. I actually have that Singapore cookbook--I guess I should've looked at it (I always think internet before print anymore). Red snapper sounds right, but I do see their small heads being a problem. I'll have to go poke around a fish market...
  5. I was curious if there was a typical or standard type of fish used in fish head curries. Does it even matter? I'm referring to the style served in Singaporean Indian restaurants, though I wouldn't mind hearing about nonya versions either. I'd like to make this dish in NYC and was wondering what kind of fish would be closest to the original.
  6. Ah...I discovered this one through the Spain & Portugal board (where my question is probably better suited). He (I'm assuming it's a he) should post more. I like seeing/reading what locals have to say about food.
  7. Slightly off topic, but... I'm a big fan of the seemingly hundreds of food blogs based out of S.E. Asia (why is that region so food crazy--or more specifically, food crazy and prone to documenting the mania) Chubby Hubby, Babe in KL, Umami, Masak Masak, noodlepie, HK Foodie, Pinoy Cook, etc. My question is--are there similar blogs based out of Spain? I ask because while visiting S.E. Asia I was armed with amazing knowledge I'd gleaned from blogs. This summer I'm going to Barcelona (just briefly) but feel less wise about the cuisine, trendy and revered as it is. ------------------- Self-promotion part: I've been blogging (ok, they didn't call it blogging pre-2000)for what feels like a million years and not too long ago morphed my personal site into a food blog. Well, I ended up morphing it back and now just write about food alot because I don't know if the world can sustain another food blog. At least not mine: Project Me! Shovel Time
  8. I would add Chestnut to the should-try list. I tried it during last year's restaurant week and have been back many times since.
  9. Hmm…I'm coming into this thread pretty late, but felt the compulsion to join in because I think the tone is so skewed. I've always wondered why the food-lovers who distance themselves from foodies tend to get so up in arms over chain restaurants. Isn't it possible to enjoy "real" food as well as the occasional chicken alfredo pizza? I can write about my love of chains, as well as a meal at Blue Hill at Stone Barns. I don't think it has to be all or nothing. I say this because recently I was going with friends to this particular Times Square Olive Garden. Kind of on a lark, like Daniel's adventure. It turned out that one of my friends had another friend (who I later realized after seeing him, is a frequent egullet poster) who was completely appalled by our restaurant choice. He went his own way dinner-wise on this occasion. And that's fine because I wouldn't want someone ruining my fun. I totally get why someone would prefer to eat at an ethnic hole-in-the-wall (or a ten-course tasting menu) but my question is why having high standards precludes having a sense of humor. We all have our biases. Me, I can't tolerate mediocre Thai food. I'd have a fit if someone tried dragging me to Lemongrass Grill. Perhaps people feel the need to define their core being based upon how they distance themselves from what's perceived as gauche or mainstream? No one wants to be average.
  10. Brioche, thanks for the kind offer, but I'm afraid the poor bunga telang wouldn't fare well in Brooklyn without a proper yard...but I could be wrong since gardening isn't my biggest strength.
  11. I somehow managed to spend RM20 at a nasi kandar place in Penang. Yikes. I'm not sure if that was due to my gluttony or this particular restaurant having high prices.
  12. Yes, Malaysia is unbelievably well-priced (even more so, after visiting straight from Hong Kong). I actually felt kind of wealthy for a few days, and I'm not even close to middle class by NYC standards (but NYC is screwy). It must be how Europeans feel when they visit America. You can eat very well for little. For instance, I had read other message boards where people were complaining about the price of char kway teow at Sister's, a roadside stall in Penang: RM 4. I was shocked when I realized that was only about $1. For comparison, I was looking at Manhattan Malaysian restaurant menus. Char kway teow averages $5 or RM 19: Oversea Asian http://www.menupages.com/restaurantdetails...d=0&cuisineid=0 Nyonya http://www.menupages.com/restaurantdetails...=0&cuisineid=41 I think the food is better than average at both of these places (and considered inexpensive), but I'm sure Malaysians would take issue some of the preparations. We just don't have access to the same ingredients.
  13. Believe me, I ate plenty of hawker food and it was wondeful, but I also had a few upscale meals as well as a few chain restaurant moments. I realize that many view hawker food as quintessentially "authentic" but I also like to see how locals eat. And locals patronize both American chains like Starbucks, as well as regional ones like Secret Recipe. They probably indulge in street stall fare too. There seems to be an eclectic spirit of eating in Malyasia and Singapore that isn't as black and white as in NYC. I read S.E. Asian "foodie" blogs that talk about homemade kueh lapis in one breath and then Swensen's sundaes in the next. I like this mix. P.S. If anyone's interested, I've posted some semi-food-ish photos on my own website (there is duplication between mine and what Tepee has posted here). Malaysia pics Singapore pics and technically off forum topic: Hong Kong, too
  14. I just got back into NYC from Asia last night, and am not one of those travelers who uses the internet on the go--so I'm just reading this great post today. Thanks to all the KL people for kindly escorting me around town and introducing me to all the best hawker food. It was one of the best days we had in S.E. Asia. The laksa, hokkien mee, bbq stingray, nasi lemak, kueh, fresh fruit from the garden...and much much more, was all so good. Tepee's photos really capture it all. I also had fun checking out KL mall culture. I was intrigued that they have chains long gone from the U.S. like A&W (which we did try just for fun) and Orange Julius. Rotiboy was also a treat. The most frightening thing I saw was something called a "cheesybon" at Cinnabon. It looked like a cinnamon roll doused in cheez whiz. Fusion food or just weird? Now that I think about, perhaps Malaysians have a penchant for fast food and cheez whiz--we also ate at a KFC in Penang and the default side was potato wedges doused in cheez whiz and mayo. Yikes. Yes, I greatly enjoy fast food in other countries from chains I'd rarely frequent in NYC. I have lots of food pics from KL (as well as Penang, Singapore and Hong Kong) and hope to post them soon. p.s. Don't worry, I am perfecting my pandan pronunciation. That's the beauty of the internet--no one can hear you mangling words as you type them.
  15. I feared that they had closed for good. I stopped by on a Sat. afternoon and the gates were down, no sign, explanation, nothing. I ended up at Carl's for my cheesesteak fix instead, whom I think does a better cheesesteak anyway...
  16. Oh no, Thai laksa?! That's a new one to me, and yet another to add to my list...
  17. Thanks for all the laksa tips (and the paste). I'm still trying to straighten out all the variations. I've looked in a few books as well as this entry on the makansakan blog. So far I've only had Katong style laksa in Singapore and assam laksa in NYC (which I'm sure was lacking since we don't have all the same herbs here). I have a long ways to go... When someone says laksa lemak are they referring to Singapore laksa or any laksa that has coconut milk in it? I'm getting the sense that not even Malaysians and Singaporeans can agree on everything laksa related.
  18. Thanks to both of you. I've read most of the Eateries in Malaysia thread and have been planning a course of attack. I'm also on a mission to try and taste as many different laksa varieties as I can (without going to all the regions they are from). Shiewie, you must be a mind reader--I was just looking at Rohani Jelani's website and thinking I should email her about new classes. I don't want to put you through too much effort, but the Malaccan kueh maker sounds great. Tepee, I'm only going to be in the two biggies: KL and Penang, four days each (not sure of the exact days off the top of my head). I hope I can squeeze in enough eating research in that time. It would be fun to put a face to the nice person who mails me a "Flavours" magazine every few months.
  19. I've seen photos of blue-tinged Nyonya dumplings, kueh and nasi kerabu. I know that traditionally this shade was acheived by soaking and extracting liquid from bunga telang/clitoria flower/butterfly pea (whatever you want to call it). I imagine just using blue dye is now the norm, as you need tons of flowers and time to go the natural way. With that said, does anyone know of any bakers/hawkers/cooks etc. in either Singapore or Malaysia who still make blue dye the traditional way? I'm going to be in both of those countries in Aug/Sept and would love to see food actually made with this flower. I'm a New Yorker, and not Asian in the least (but am obsessed with S.E. Asian food) so forgive any ignorance on regional cooking techniques and ingredients.
  20. There is a pretty good food blog based out of Guam, The Scent of Green Bananas, but it's more focused on cooking than on restaurants (maybe for good reason). It's the only Guam food related website that I'm familiar with, so I thought I'd give it a mention.
  21. Oh, you can click on the article and the plain text pops up. I've only eaten at the location on Broadway, so I can't say if the two are equally good.
  22. I recently wrote a piece for the NY Post (yes, the Post) about the best Latin chicken (fried and rotisserie). The only Peruvian place I used was Pio Pio, and people have already mentioned most of the Manhattan biggies. There are places like Cocina Cuzco and Coco Roco, but I don't think they have the atmosphere you're looking for. If you're not dead set on Peruvian, El Malecon in Washington Heights is well known for their rotisserie chicken. And Queens is practically teeming with various S. American (mostly Columbian) rotisserie joints like Pollos A La Brasa Mario, La Pollada de Laura, and La Pollera Colorada.
  23. I was fortunate enough to have someone give me a ride, but it looks like Upi Jaya is half-way between the Elmhurst Ave. R/G/V station and the Roosevelt Ave. E/R/G/V/F/7. That's a lot of train options. I'd be curious to hear a report from someone with more Indonesian food experience.
  24. Upi Jaya is at 76-04 Woodside Ave., that might technically be Elmhurst, whatever. I've only been once so far, but really enjoyed the food. Supposedly, the style is from the Padang region, which is different from other NYC Indonesian restaurants, spicier, I think. The only dish I know that is traditionally Padang is rendang. They do a good beef version (though it seemed slightly spendy compared to the rest of the menu). I had a jackfruit curry. I'd never had jackfruit as a savory ingredient, it was tangy and similar to bamboo shoots. Very good. I also tried a fried chicken dish smothered in a fresh, moderately hot sambal. Oh, there was also a lamb entree but I can't remember much about it (not that it was unmemorable). The space is relatively small, and was filled on a Sat. night. The owner seems very friendly. The oddest part was an ad on the menu promoting a kareoke night on Saturdays. There's not really a space for it, and he had the TV and music on the whole evening blasting The Carpenters. Maybe he was trying to inspire someone to start singing.
  25. I don't really mind Tyler Florence, but it makes me nuts when he pronounces jalepeno: halluh PEENO. Tyler Florence --- except for the fact that he says "That's fun-tastic" about 1000 times during a given show
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