Category Archives: asian

Dimsum at Pacificana, Sunset Park, Brooklyn

Pacificana was introduced to us by friends  one Sunday afternoon. Dimsum brunches are among my favorite things so I am always on the lookout for new places. We usually just make the trek to our favorite joint in the city (Golden Unicorn) since it’s logistically easier for us, but Pacificana now gives us a reason to make the trip to Brooklyn’s Chinatown in Sunset Park, usually followed by a shopping spree at Hong Kong Supermarket.

Fried dough wrapped in rice noodles.

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Eden Center, Falls Church, Virginia

Our Vietnamese friend was on a mission during our trip to DC, and she would not be dissuaded. She loaded ice packs into the trunk in preparation for her haul, something I probably would have done if I believed a one-stop shop of Filipino goodies was in close proximity to a place we were visiting.

Eden Center

Eden Center is that kind of savior for the Vietnamese in Virginia. Housed in the rows of a beige and red strip mall were stores upon stores of freshly made delicacies and snacks, restaurants, salons and jewelry stores. We had lunch at Pho Xe Lua after which our friend went into a zone, raiding one store after the other for some treats you simply cannot find in New York.

Here are some photos of Eden Center’s treasures. Continue reading

Favorite Things: Shabu-Tatsu Shabu-Shabu

I love eating with a method and process. It feels ceremonial, ritualistic, and respectful of the food.

Fantastic in the winter and great in the summer, Shabu-Tatsu is the only place we go for Shabu-Shabu in NYC, and is one of our few favorites for a hot and soupy meal. They have been around for over a decade and have never failed expectations.

Prime rib beef, vegetables, tofu and shiitake after “swishing” in the hot broth.
I don’t have to tell you that Shabu-Shabu means “swish-swish” (or do I?) and that is the extent of the cooking you do during your meal whose center of attention is the hot pot of water where your group will dump vegetables and swish around some meat.
The setup: a plate of prime rib slivers, and a hot pot with vegetables.

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Nha Trang Restaurant, New York City

“Hello, kamusta (how are you)? Long time, no see!” the old waiter at Nha Trang Restaurant on Baxter Street greeted us on entry.

He’s not Filipino but greets all Pinoys this way, and if you chat him up on why he knows how to say masarap (tasty), he will tell you that he lived in a Vietnamese refugee camp in the Philippines for quite a while. We’ve been coming to Nha Trang for over a decade and personal touches like this are hard to ignore.

That’s not to say the food doesn’t deserve credit. Other than Nicky’s, Nha Trang’s pho is among the tastiest we’ve found in the city, and the have perfected the use of half-cooked beef slices that melt in the mouth. Continue reading

Homemade Miso Soup

There is nothing more fragrant than fresh miso soup that doesn’t come from a powder, 
mix,or contain any other ingredients or MSG.
I picked up this baby at the Food Coop.

As these: Maitake mushrooms on the left, bunapi mushrooms on the right.
Bring a pot of water to a boil along with the mushrooms.

Take two tablespoons of miso (depending on the amount of water).
Mix in the miso until dissolved, simmer for five minutes, and then serve.
For this meal I served it with brussels sprouts and garlic and bistek Filipino pork chops.
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