Tag Archives: pork

EONS: The Greek Chipotle

Eons
EONS
633 2nd Ave (34th St)
New York, NY 10016

Chipotle… meets the Greek Gods and makes Greek babies. And by babies I mean food. And by Chipotle makes Greek food I mean a restaurant called Eons copied Chipotle’s healthy/fastfood model and made a Greek version of it. And it was deeeeeliicioussss!

EonsEONS just opened up not too long ago in the land of the bros (Murray Hill). Like Chipotle, you choose a base (pita, rice, or salad), pick your protein (chicken, lamb, steak, pork, shrimp, salmon, or octopus – lots of options!), pick your sides (gigante beans, lentil salad, beet salad, etc.), add a spread (tzadziki, eggplant, hummus, garlic spread, etc.), then add as many salad-y things you want (cucumber, tomatoes, olives, etc.). Other than the seafood proteins, your meal will cost less than $10.

Eons
And your meal will look beautifully colorful like this. Here I ordered the brown rice base with slow roasted pork (very juicy and soft), EONS salad (which includes farro, cucumbers, tomatoes, mint, and parsley), beet salad, olives, and roasted baby eggplant spread. The meal was filling yet light, flavorful but not too salty. My body felt amazing after. All the ingredients are just very fresh and simple – something I’ve loved about Greek food but was never able to access it so easily and quickly as from EONS. Continue reading EONS: The Greek Chipotle

The original Xi’an Famous Foods … in Xi’an.

Xi'an Food
子午路张记肉夹馍
located throughout Xi’an, China

I’m back from a two week trip home in Beijing where I ate five meals a day, mostly from my mother’s kitchen. I also did a short two day trip to my dad’s hometown in Xi’an. If you live in New York, you probably recognize Xi’an from the deeeelicious Xi’an Famous Foods chain. Well, I visited the original Xi’an Famous Foods and (no offense) it blew me away. Xi’an Famous Food is amazingly great. But compared to what it aspires to be, I think there is still room for improvement. 子午路张记肉夹馍 (Zai Wu Lu Zhang Ji Rou Jia Mo) is a chain that has apparently been around for ages and ages. It serves up just a handful of classic Xi’an foods.

Xi'an Food
Check out the menu board. Just a few items. All incredibly affordable (8元 is about $1.30, which in this case buys you one stewed pork burger and almost two Liang Pi noodles).

Xi'an Food
You order and pay at the front.

Xi'an Food
Then find a seat and wait. Fast food style.

Xi'an Food
This is where the dude chops up that juicy, flavorful stewed pork for the burger. Continue reading The original Xi’an Famous Foods … in Xi’an.

Madangsui for some mouth watering marbled galbi (short rib)

Mandangsui Madangsui
35 West 35th Street (between 5th and 6th Ave)
New York, NY 10001

I was recently invited to Madangsui for their Korean barbecue. I was pretty excited to try a new restaurant in ktown because I find that I’m always at the same places when I go (Kun Jip, Don’s Bogam, BCD Tofu House…). Madangsui is a couple streets up from the main 32nd street strip and nestled between a number of non-korean bars, which I thought was a red flag. But once you walk in, you’re transported back into that same Korean world. The place is actually pretty huge (note: good for parties) and was packed with koreans. Like all korean places, we were served an array of ban chan (small appetizers pictured below that are always refillable and FREE!).

Mandangsui The array of ban chan was not huge, but included a nice variety of things. Spicy, not spicy, crunchy, soft, etc. They were nice pairings with the barbecue to come.

Continue reading Madangsui for some mouth watering marbled galbi (short rib)

Yunnan Kitchen: decently tasty but also pretentious

Yunnan Kitchen
79 Clinton St
(between Rivington St & Delancey St)
New York, NY 10002

I’m not completely against non-traditional Chinese food. I love Baohaus, especially their fried chicken bao and fried fish coffin bao, which are both not traditional Chinese dishes. I also love Mission Chinese, a hip little modern Chinese place that even has a kale salad. That has got to be the least Chinese thing ever. But I still love it. ‘Cause they do it right. It’s hip in the right ways. They have crispy pig ears (totally Chinese) and use Old Bay seasoning (totally not Chinese). Danny Bowien experiments with all kinds of Eastern and Western flavors and brings them together in exciting, unpretentious ways.

Yunnan Kitchen, on the other hand, pretends to be traditional but also wants to be hip and pretentious. The space is occupied by mostly non-Asians (no offense) and the menu encourages sharing “delicious small plates.” Nuh uh. Chinese people don’t share small plates. We share big plates. Pet peeve of mine. Pictured above is the Cold Noodles ($12) with ground pork, pickled mustard greens, cilantro, and peanuts. This is a pretty classic dish – spicy, sweet, and nutty – but $12 is ridiculous for a tiny bowl of limp noodles. Check out Xi’an for some serious noodle damage.


We also shared the Beef Tartare ($13) with chili oil, green cabbage, and rice cracker. I liked the rice cracker and green cabbage combo but also felt like the portions were way too small for a $13 dish. The beef was lightly flavored. Nothing too memorable.


These Stir Fried Mushrooms ($11) with sawtooth herb, ham, and peppers was probably my favorite dish from the night. There were a number of different kinds of mushrooms sautéed with a smoked ham and spicy green peppers (green long horns?). My only suggestion to Yunnan Kitchen is to serve it on a sizzling cast iron plate. It smells so good, it deserves to come out crackling.  Continue reading Yunnan Kitchen: decently tasty but also pretentious

Kenka – open until 4am… you know what that means.


Kenka
25 Saint Marks Pl
(between 3rd Ave and Astor Place)
New York, NY 10003

New York City night owls, prepare to meet your next favorite drunken food spot.  Think cheap Japanese tapas… the menu is huge, featuring a wide variety of foods like yakitori (Japanese bbq on a stick), grilled fish, fried udon, ramen, fried rice, soup, and even mochi ice cream.  AND it is open until 4am on Fridays and Saturdays.  The food is not ridiculously mind-blowing but it is pretty good… and it becomes ridiculously mind-blowing when you’re intoxicated, of course.  I actually recently went just for dinner and so was finally able to take pictures.  Pictured above is the Yaki Udon, which is fried udon noodle with pork, squid and vegetables ($6.50).  The noodles are thick and chewy.  Pork was fatty and flavorful.


Here is the Yakitori BBQ Chicken ($4.00).  It is nothing compared to Yakitori Totto, but certainly serves its purpose.  Meat was not super tender nor tough.  Sauce was a typical terriyaki kind of sauce.  I didn’t like it too much, but my friend M.B. wiped the plate clean.

Continue reading Kenka – open until 4am… you know what that means.

Cooking for One: Shiitake Mushrooms and Pork Loin

This is the first dinner I have had to cook for myself in a long time.  Cooking for one is always annoying and difficult.  On the one hand, it presents an opportunity to be extra lazy… you could just make a quick sandwich to simply appease your growling stomach.  On the other hand, you’re eating by yourself, which isn’t exactly on my list of fun activities, so you want to make yourself something nice.  So last night, I made myself something simple and nice.  A little effort goes a long way when you’re cooking for yourself.  I made a shiitake mushroom and pork stir-fry and a tiny pot of rice.

I’m Chinese so I don’t follow strict recipes but I’ll try to describe as accurately as I can the portion* of ingredients that I used.  I first thinly sliced up a piece of pork loin, about the size of my palm, and marinated it in soy sauce, sugar, Chinese cooking wine, sesame oil, and a little bit of corn starch (helps to soften the meat).  While the meat was marinating, I removed the tough stems of two large handfuls of shiitake mushrooms and chopped them up into quarters.  Shiitake mushrooms are great because they are juicy, meaty, and very naturally fragrant. Continue reading Cooking for One: Shiitake Mushrooms and Pork Loin

Ibu Oka: Babi Guling (Suckling Pig from Ubud, Bali)

Anthony Bourdain gave this pig a big thumbs up on his trip to Indonesia for his show No Reservations.  Since then, the place has become extremely popular.  I read all these reviews online that raved about the juicy, tender, and flavorful pork.  As an avid pork lover, I couldn’t wait to try this local delicacy.  I ordered the original babi guling, which came with slices of pork covered in a yellow sauce, a piece of blood sausage, some fried bits and pieces of unknown entrails, a large piece of deep fried pig skin, and rice. Continue reading Ibu Oka: Babi Guling (Suckling Pig from Ubud, Bali)