159 Graham Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11206
I know. It’s been for. ever. I could give you some bullpoop excuse about how I’ve been really busy and feel soooo bad for not writing about all my recent food adventures, but the truth is the reason I haven’t posted in a long time is because I recently switched jobs and for the first time in my life am super happy and with what I’m doing (it’s sort of food related!) and no longer feel the need to find another way to do something I care about. That being said, now that I’m more settled in, I hope I’m better about updating because I’ve been eating at some bomb butt places lately. Win Son as the most recent!
H.K., my truest Brooklynite friend, somehow was able to convince me and K.C. to trek to East Williamsburg on a school night (I’m a brat). And it was totally worth it. Win Son is a new Taiwanese-American restaurant opened up by Josh Ku and Trigg Brown (former sous chef at Upland). The food tastes and looks like homemade Chinese food – no frills, just good, with a lot of the same ingredients used over and over again.
Marinated Cucumbers ($5) with garlic and cilantro and A TON OF THEIR AMAZING FRIED GARLIC THINGS. Simple and amazing. Simply amazing.
Oyster Omelette ($11) with A TON OF THEIR AMAZING FRIED GARLIC THINGS. Oysters are whole and fresh – still mostly raw even. Legit.
Pan-griddled Pork Buns ($9) with scallions and chili vinaigrette and A TON OF THEIR AMAZING FRIED GARLIC THINGS. This might have been my favorite thing from the night. The chili vinaigrette is slightly slightly spicy, slightly sweet, slightly acidic. Super nomz. Skin is not too thin nor too thick. Pork is tender. Snaps for these buns. Continue reading
Oh, home. I love home. Whenever I go home I find that I’m in this room most of the time, watching either my mom or grandma prepare breakfast, lunch, dinner, and/or some snack. During every waking hour of the day, someone is always in the kitchen prepping or cooking. This past Christmas, I learned how to make Braised Pork Over Rice (卤肉饭), a classic Taiwanese comfort food. I have yet to meet a single person who doesn’t enjoy this.
Finished product! The pork belly that we used was a bit too fatty… hence all of the extra oils. Feel free to use less fatty meats or skim the fat (or eat it like me because it has so much flavorrrrrr). The recipe is very simple and very similar to my Red Cooked Pork Belly that has become quite popular.
Couple pounds of pork belly (sorry, this recipe isn’t super precise but it’s also because it doesn’t need to be). Blanche the pork belly (aka. dump slabs of the meat into boiling water for about a minute and take out). This gets rid of some of the gamey flavors. Then chop them up into 1cm thick bits.
Diced onion, garlic, and ginger.
Star anise, cinnamon, ginger, a few bay leaves, and rock sugar (not pictured). Continue reading
238 E 14th St
(between 2nd Ave & 3rd Ave)
New York, NY 10003
Sorry for being MIA again. I’ve been busy figuring out my life and have recently made some exciting changes! Also took advantage of some inbetween time to travel last week to Jordan. Jordanian blog post coming soon! After our long journey back, we had a couple hungry hours to kill before dinner so dropped by BaoHaus. I’ve reviewed this place twice before. It’s become a staple place to go to for a snack in my neighborhood. The little baos are the perfect after-school snack to tide you over before dinner. Of all the baos they have, my favorite is still the Birdhaus Bao ($3.50).
This little bun is stuffed with a piece of fried chicken with mayo, cilantro, crushed peanuts, and Taiwanese red sugar. The chicken used to always be fat and juicy but the last couple of times I’ve been, the chicken has been dry and overcooked. BaoHaus, don’t be losing your quality now that you’re the popular kid on the block.
In addition to increased prices all around (sad), BaoHaus has added a couple new menu items, including the Chairman on Rice (a $10.50 bowl of fatty flavorful pork belly over rice, something you can get in Chinatown for less than half that price) and the Coffin Bao, which is a whopping $7.50. It is a large fried man tou (Chinese steamed bun) stuffed with either fried chicken or fish and topped with condensed milk, crushed peanuts, Taiwanese red sugar, and cilantro. Continue reading
Saint’s Alp Teahouse
39 3rd Ave
(between Great Jones St & Bowery)
New York, NY 10003
Oh have I grown. Saint’s Alp was the first bubble tea place I was introduced to as a college student in Boston visiting New York for exciting weekends in the big city. Boston’s bubble tea scene is pretty limited. Very few places in Boston have their own bubble tea sealing machine, a sign of their inauthenticity. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, here is a comparison:
Left is a bubble tea from Kung Fu Tea I was saving in my fridge as a post-dinner treat. See how the cup is sealed at the top in plastic? There is a satisfaction of popping that straw through the plastic and it only comes with getting quality bubble tea. Many places serve the tea and bubbles like the photo on the right. It’s usually made with some “tea-mix” and crumbly tapioca. No good. If a place invests in a sealer, you know they intend to make good bubble tea. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a sufficient relationship (I’m studying for the LSAT, forgive me) but a necessary one, if serves quality bubble tea then has sealer, not if has sealer than serves quality. There are plenty of places that have invested in a sealer and just can’t get their tea right. Continue reading
I randomly decided to buy pork floss from HK Supermarket the other day because it is possibly one of the greatest comfort foods. I grew up eating this and always felt that we, the pork floss and I, had a very special relationship. It was a little weird like I was*, kind of funny looking**, and often misunderstood***. It was also always looking out for me. Anytime a bland food would force itself upon me, Pork Floss would always be on the rescue to make life a little sweeter, saltier, and tastier.
Anyway, with Pork Floss readily available in my kitchen cupboard, I decided to make a Taiwanese Club Sandwich for brunch. This is a type of sandwich that you can find in every bakery in China or Chinatown. Like the banh mi from my last post, this is a East-meets-West fusion kind of sandwich.