I went to the Los Angeles Food Bowl Night Market the weekend before last.
I had read about David Chang’s food for years. So when I heard that Momofuku would be opening a stall there I was very excited.
The food festival was located in Grand Park in downtown Los Angeles.
I had to wait 20 minutes to be served.
The cook cutting the meat gave me a free sample of brisket. The meat was salty, savory, fatty and tender.
I loved it.
I ordered both the spicy pork wrap and the salted brisket.
The flatbread was chewy and absorbed the oil well. There was some sort of a pickled vegetable in the salted brisket wrap and parsley, I think.
The spicy pork wrap wasn’t too spicy, but it was likewise delicious. There was a spicy sauce and cilantro present.
Even after eating both, I had some room left so I bought a sea urchin.
I went last Saturday with my brother but it apparently had ended. 😭
I had been to the Chinatown location of Qin West Noodle before. So when a brother of mine (I have three) came to visit me I took him to Qin West Noodle. I realized it was a chain, so we ate medicinal gummies and took a Lyft to the closer location.
I had had liang pi twice in Singapore. Once near my first apartment near Woodlands and secondly at the People’s Park Complex in the Chinatown there. For the record, that’s my favorite Chinatown.
I knew what liang pi was: soft noodles, drenched in a spicy sauce with peanuts and bean sprouts.
Wikipedia :Majiang Liangpi (simplified Chinese: 麻酱凉皮; traditional Chinese: 麻醬涼皮; pinyin: Májiàng liángpí) are liangpi garnished with julienned cucumber and a sauce made of salt, vinegar, hot chili oil and especially black sesame paste, for which it is named (simplified Chinese: 麻酱; traditional Chinese: 麻醬; pinyin: Májiàng).[
These noodles were the softest yet. Soft and slightly firm, I greatly enjoyed chewing them. The spicy and savory sauce was likewise delicious. I understand why the manager or proprietor was so excited about the liang pi served there. It really is great. I could have easily eaten it spicier.
The Chinese soda was better than Fanta.
Only three blocks from my apartment is an outlet of a local noodle restaurant chain, Noodle World Jr.
I had it once before when I just moved in.
The portion was huge! There were decent sized shrimp, strips of pork, scallions tossed in rice noodles. Of course I added chili paste!
It was delicious and reminded me of my time in Singapore.
My brother from Colorado was in town for the holidays, so I told him about the legendary xiaolongbao of Din Tai Fung. Off we went to the city/suburb of Glendale where in a giant mall was located a location of that Shanghaiese by way of Taiwan restaurant.
Were the dumplings, full of minced pork and broth as good as they were in Singapore?
Yes. They were perfect. While the menu here is shorter than the menu at the Singapore locations (and no chicken rice, sadly) the Din Tai Fung machine does its job well. The broth was porky and hot, but not hot enough to burn the mouth.
Chicken dumplings were likewise amazing. The broth was intensely flavorful.
Water spinach was not on the menu, so we got spinach and garlic.
It was also perfectly cooked. There were no particles of sand in the spinach at all.
Pork steamed buns were great.
Red bean dumplings were good, but after having five I was finished. They were sweet, but not overly so.
Of course I miss Chinese food. I’m happy to report that authentic northern Chinese fare can be found at Qin in Chinatown.
It’s from Shaanxi, to be exact.
I was immensely pleased to eat authentic Chinese food. Braised beef, fried tofu skin, cilantro, pickled cabbage and peanuts served over rice noodles and a delicious broth, along with sitting in a red plastic chair gave me a pleasant flashback to Singapore. Of course I ordered it spicy.
I will return soon.
I lived seven years in Asia: one and a half in (基隆) Keelung, Taiwan and five and a half in (新加坡) Singapore. If the reader wondered if I crave Asian food, I do. Chinese food is my favorite cuisine of all and dumplings have become comfort food for me.
It’s not Don Tai Fung, but it’s four blocks from my apartment and it’s relatively cheap. IXLB is my local dumpling house and I just realized the acronym means something like “i love xiaolongbao.”
I didn’t order the xiaolongbao, but i ordered cucumber slices in garlic and sesame oil. This version also had Sichuan peppercorns and chilies and I liked it.
The steamed pork bun was likewise delicious and comforting.
It’s no-frills, but the food is authentic and reasonably priced.
Not a restaurant, but shameless advertisement of a novel I’ve written.
I think it’s pretty good. The Kindle version is only $3.
It is a novel, but there are plenty of descriptions of Asian food. It’s less Eat, Pray, Love and more Bourne with bumbling people.