When the family’s in the mood for Chinese food, we head south to San Gabriel, Alhambra, or Monterey Park to feast. But when the family’s in the mood for American Chinese food, we stay close to home and dine at Yang Chow Restaurant (or Panda Express, of course). There’s enough gastro real estate for the best of both woks.
The Yang Family opened the first Yang Chow upon arriving in Los Angeles from Hong Kong in 1976. Today there are three locations in Pasadena, Chinatown, and Canoga Park.
Even though there are well over 100 items on the menu, every customer that comes through the doors orders the same thing: Slippery Shrimp ($17.50). An ocean-dwelling cousin of General Tso, Slippery Shrimp is lightly coated in cornstarch and wok’d to perfection before being doused in a sticky sauce made of ginger, garlic, chilies, and plenty of the refined white stuff. It’s sweet as all hell, but also addictively crunchy.
Continue reading ‘Yang Chow Restaurant – Pasadena’
Thanks to The Astronomer’s “alternate work schedule,” every so often we’re able to meet up for a low-key weekday lunch. We stopped into Miàn during its first week of service for a taste of Chongqing-style noodles. Even though the line for a table was longer than anticipated, the food was well worth the wait, especially the dumplings (surprisingly).
Tony Xu, who last dazzled our tastebuds at Chengdu Taste in Alhambra and Rosemead, keeps the hits coming at his second concept Miàn. The restaurant serves just a dozen different mian (noodles), five kinds of chaoshou (dumplings), and eight appetizers.
A complimentary dish of pickled and lightly spiced cabbage arrived at the table to start.
Continue reading ‘Miàn by Chengdu Taste – San Gabriel’
I had the pleasure of attending the LongHouse Food Revival this past fall in Upstate New York. Created by Molly O’Neill, this annual gathering has been called the Woodstock of food—an intense day-long symposium designed to raise the bar on how food stories are told and to connect generations of food-inspired artists, writers, and the like.
Every year, LongHouse focuses on a single story to create a multi-media “Pop-Up Food Magazine”. This year’s theme, Chop Stick Nation, explored Chinese American food stories through a variety of mediums including spoken word, film, and live cooking.
Saturday began bright and early with a foraging walk led by Ava Chin at the Huyck Preserve. Autumn in Upstate cannot be beat.
Ava introduced the crowd of mostly city mice to things like garlic mustard, burdock, and wood sorrel. We tasted a bit of this and that as we walked. Continue reading ‘LongHouse Food Revival 2015: Chop Stick Nation’
Word of made-from-scratch, hand-pulled noodles at China Tasty lured me away from my cubical and to Alhambra for lunch the other week. While hand-pulled noodles are easily found throughout mainland China, noodle pulling specialists are surprisingly scarce in the San Gabriel Valley. Props to the L.A. Times’ Amy Scattergood for unearthing this gem.
China Tasty makes four different noodle shapes. There’s “standard round” (like spaghetti), “small flat” (like linguini), “medium flat” (like papperdelle), and “triangle noodle” (like no other). Amy describes the lattermost as “kind of like the noodle version of laminated dough, pulled into layers and cooked until beautifully chewy.” It was my favorite of the varieties we sampled.
First up was the “Szechuan Dan-Dan Noodle” ($5.99). We requested the triangle noodles to pair with this dish.
Continue reading ‘China Tasty – Alhambra’