Octopuscarwash's Gourmet Adventures

I live to eat. Yes, I am an Asian Jew. My favorite meal is breakfast (oatmeal in particular). I'm only in high school, so I am a complete amateur. Some of my favorite cuisines are Middle Eastern, Moroccan, Japanese and Korean. I eat so much Chinese food that it's hard to say whether I like it or not... all I know is that I don't like what most of America seems to think of as Chinese food, Panda Express. I'm a pescetarian and love coming up with my own healthy fusion food.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Off to New York!

Just thought I'd blog last night and this morning before heading off! I'll be gone till the 2nd, and hopefully eat some awesome food, see Equus (!!!!), hang out with relatives, see museums, and shop, of course.
My cousins came for lunch and we took them for dim sum at Ed's Potstickers, which has a different name now, but I don't remember what it is. Either way, it's probably the only Northern Chinese restaurant in Chicago, and is pretty authentic. We're regulars here, which is a nice feeling.
WE ORDERED SO MUCH FOOD! Most of it was meat, so fortunately, I didn't end up eating TOO much.
For the meat eaters we ordered:
Ed's famous potstickers, which are rolled up in a cigar shape
Shrimp dumplings-- I originally ordered these for myself, took a bite of one and realized that it was mainly pork. Didn't swallow it or anything, but a year or two ago I would have been really upset. Luckily, I'm not as fragile about that right now.

Wonton soup

Stir-fried lamb from Xinjiang province (Muslim region that uses cumin and eats flatbread)
Some kind of pork dish that turned out to be at room temperature
Scallion pancakes with sliced pork in the center
Shao bing, sesame bread, with more meat in the center

What I ate:
(or drank)-- fresh soymilk, which only my dad and I appreciate. It's so light and refreshing!
My favorite dish was a classic peasant dish of cornbread and fried fish. The fish weren't fried as in breaded-- they were just crispy, savory and delicious-- also probably the cheapest kind of fish you can get. I love the cornbread because the only ingredient is corn-- this is very, very authentic.

The weirdest tofu soup ever, but I loved it. The broth was cloudy and tasted a bit like soy milk, but also had undertones of sesame. It had little strips of fried tofu that soaked up the soup. Of course, it also had cilantro.
Vegetarian potstickers-- I'm not really a big fan of potstickers, esp. not vegetarian ones. I tried part of one, and it just had cabbage, carrots, and I don't know what else. I'd rather have the real thing.
Stir-fried sweet and sour cabbage with peppers-- this isn't really sweet and sour like Panda Express makes it. It's just full of vinegar and not too much cornstarch. The vegetables are crunchy and tangy, and I couldn't rave about this dish enough. I order it all the time in Beijing.

Last but not least, vegetarian shaobing (the sesame bread, remember?). Not bad considering you can't really get them in the U.S., but they were a little on the bland side, and not hot enough. Of course, I doubt they were made fresh, so I shouldn't complain.

All in all, I definitely recommend this restaurant, ESPECIALLY if you're a pork fanatic.

Last night I didn't end up going to that birthday party. Instead I went to a family gathering of my friend's-- the same one I hung out with on Wednesday. They're relatively religious (Jewish), so it was kind of like a big Shabbat dinner! They eat vegetarian (plus fish) like me, so the food spread was absolutely ideal. I was in heaven!!!!

There was challah (not homemade, but apparently it usually is!), and then the food appeared. Seriously, this spread had ALL of my favorite foods. Here's what there was:
Baked salmon wrapped in tinfoil
Brussel sprouts
A kind of not-quite kugel-- it was called a baked latke
Homemade apple sauce and sour cream
2 salads: one with chickpeas (dried and soaked, not canned) and those other big white beans, mushrooms, greens, sweet peas, and cherry tomatoes, the other with pears, avocado, and pecans.
I only had half a piece of salmon... I would have gone back for seconds, but nobody else did, so I just hung out. However, when I got home I was pretty hungry and had yogurt, grapenuts, and berries.
I definitely ate more than what was pictured.

Last night I was woken up at 4 by the LOUDEST thunder and BRIGHTEST lightning ever. I love thunderstorms, and just lay there listening to the sounds, but it did make me kind of tired. I was thinking of working out before we left for the airport, but decided against it-- I was really sleepy and there wasn't that much time, since our flight leaves at 11.
For breakfast, I had a really filling bowl of oatmeal... I accidentally dumped in half the bottle of vanilla and had to pour it off, but let's not talk about that.
1/3 cup oats, a little more than 1/2 a banana, 1/3 cup vanilla hemp milk, 1/3 cup water, applesauce, part of a crumbled oatmeal raisin cookie, a spoon of Greek yogurt, and peanut butter (plus spices and wheat germ).
Man, was this filling. Maybe it was that little bit of protein from the yogurt that did it?

Anyways, we have to leave soon and I have to finish packing my carry on. Hopefully I'll keep blogging in NY, but if not, I'll do one of those summary posts where I list the highlights.

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Anonymous Emily said...

Hope Equus is good!

Rohini and I were on the same plane going to NY! We were saying how hilarious it would be if you and her were at the same showing of Equus, or if you had been on our plane as well.

December 28, 2008 at 9:58 AM  
Anonymous erica said...

Lida, I just wanted to let you know I hate such a wonderful time at Candle with you! Next time you're in NYC, we'll def. meet up again and get tasti d-lite! haha.


December 31, 2008 at 7:23 PM  
Anonymous erica said...

haha, I obviously meant to say I HAD such a wonderful time. me and my typos!

December 31, 2008 at 7:23 PM  
Blogger VeggieGirl said...

Hope you had fun in NYC!!

Happy New Year!!

January 1, 2009 at 8:23 PM  

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