Showing posts with label comfort food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label comfort food. Show all posts

Monday, October 6, 2014

Yolk's Restaurant and Commissionary

I decided to return from a long blogging slumber with the coverage of an east-side neighbourhood diner that is probably the most raved about in city at the moment; Yolk's!

My previous trip to New York City has seriously left me longing for a seriously good wholesome brunch, which is comparably scarce in Vancouver in my opinion.  I've been gawking at photos of oozing runny poached eggs from Yolk's for quite sometime on Urbanspoon.  Work schedule, however, only left me to write it up as a wish list up until last Sunday.

Located on Clarke and East Hastings, a lazy individual such as myself could only describe it as 'a road trip', or a mini 'journey' coming up from Richmond.  Since Yolk's doesn't take reservation, I already predicted that the wait would be long and eternal.  We should either go extremely early, or just before closing.  Nonetheless, we showed up at the door right around 11:30 am and met with the rest of the population crowding outside.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Do you love fried chicken? Go to L.A. Chicken!



I'm a feen for fried chicken, really good fried chicken.  

For some reason the KFC in Asia is amazing for that, I think it's the seasoning and the batter that makes a difference.  Meanwhile, I consider the quality of Canadian KFC next to being garbage.  It's quite disappointingly atrocious.  It's been almost a year since I have had a good fried chicken during my trip to L.A. last year.  I have been to several places that offer great fried chicken such as Liu's and fried chicken wings from Phnom Penh, but I didn't know of any place that is great at southern-style fried chicken.   So when I heard about a good fried chicken joint located right in Richmond, I was determined to get to the bottom of it.  

Located on Thorpe road in Richmond, L.A. Chicken interior looks like it was frozen in time since its opening in the early days in the 80's (I'm assuming). A typical mom and pop fast food joint that looks like it could use a face lift, particularly for its food posters that have faded to sepia.  They are still doing well for business as most patrons come in for take outs.  

Their 3 piece chicken combo for $9.99 came with fries, gravy, and a choice of pop or salad. First bite taken was very crispy and I mean the entire skin was deep fried to a golden crisp.  The meat was also well marinated through.  I wish there was more spices on the batter though.  The gravy was also good, thick and rich.  Although the fries somehow managed to stay hot and crispy even after a while, I could probably skip them and just get a whole bucket next time.  I gave it 8/10, not too shabby at all!  What else is missing here? Waffles with lots of butter and syrup!

If you know of another great fried chicken joint in Vancouver and greater area, I am all ears.

L.A. Chicken on Urbanspoon

Simple and comforting cream of corn soup recipe

Cream of corn is probably my favourite soup ever since I was young.  French onion soup comes a close second, but I have yet to try making that.  What's not to love about cream + corn? A cup of steaming corn soup is always soothing and enjoyable at anytime, any place.  With winter creeping in and I'm always getting sick, I find myself craving cream of corn soup more and more.

I've always relied on making cream of corn soup just by opening a can of Green Giant creamed corn and add milk, which is pretty simple.  But I recently refined the process just a little bit more and here it goes...  

2.5 tbsp. butter
2.5 tbsp. flour
500 ml milk
1 can sweet corn*
1 pinch sea salt
1 pinch rosemary

*note: I highly recommend using Delmonte peaches & cream corn since it gives a really nice sweet flavour in the soup.  I also ended up using half because one can had too much corn >_<. 

In a large saucepan, melt butter and slowly mix in flour to make a roux.  After a few minutes, cnce a smooth paste is formed, slowly add milk.  Bring to boil and stir until the paste is dissolved and the liquid thickens.  If you want a thicker consistency, you can add 1/2 cup of cream or more flour.  Add sweet corn, season with salt and rosemary and reduce to simmer for about 5 minutes.  Keep stirring to prevent the film from forming. 

Season with black pepper and serve!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Poutine at Frenchies



Frenchies is a 50's style diner best known for their Montreal smoked meat sandwiches and poutine varieties. I have visited Frenchies on a few occasion when I really need a quick fix on some deep fry goodness. They have a daily special for poutine and the one I got was pulled pork. The small was around $9 and it was not at all small. The medium, if you don't share, may be large enough to give you heart disease. Although their portions are large, I find the price tag to be a bit too high. Most of the ingredients seem to come straight from the freezer and I wish the preperation was more gourmet. It also bugs me that the gravy is never hot enough so the cheese curds don't melt. They are not bad, but I can get the same poutine from Costco, which are just as tasty for less than half the price.

Frenchies Diner on Urbanspoon

Saturday, October 15, 2011

House of Tofu Soup hits the spot


As a second branch from its original location in Coquitlam, House of Tofu Soup, given its name, has a reputation for its savoury sundubu jiggae.  I always passed by this restaurant along Garden City road and it never once caught my attention.  There were times when I tried looking through the covered up windows to see if anyone eats there or if it was even opened.  The lack of exterior appeal deterred me from visiting there for months until now.  It turns out I was the only one unaware of this hidden Korean gem in Richmond.  Despite the restaurant not having an obvious sign, it seems patrons have no problem finding the place.  The inside of the restaurant is also much more spacious than it looked from the outside.   It was quite busy when we walked in around 7 pm, and I saw lots of couples and families.  From observation, yes, their portions are definitely made for sharing.  The prices are reasonable as everything is under $20.  I have not tried the Coquitlam location, but definitely would like to in the future for the sake of comparison.

I love going to Korean restaurants especially for their complimentary and refillable side dishes that fill the table :) I mean, I won't mind if the food takes a little longer because I have at least a few dishes to keep busy with.
Mash potato with corn
Kimchi, very robust in flavours
Seaweed salad--collagen! yumm!!
Mixed pickled vegetables
Pumpkin soup
The meal
Mundu (deep fried dumplings) $4.99 for 8 pieces.  They were fresh off the frier so the skin is thin and crisp (crispiest I've had in Vancouver)!  The ground pork filling were seasoned and didn't need any condiment, but I still got some.  Squirt some sauces on top and eat 'em while they're hot!  I definitely would come back for these dumplings again.

Nothing warms you up to the soul on a cold, windy, and starving night like a steaming bowl of sundubu jiggae, and that's exactly what we came here for.  House of Tofu Soup offers a solid value combo with hot tofu soup and bulgogi for only $14.99, a steal considering this could easily feed 2 people.  We ordered the tofu stew spicy with seafood, which came with tons of shrimp and bits of clams.  The broth was rich with shrimp natural sweetness and a savoury and satisfying gochujang (korean chili paste) punch.  We cracked an egg in there and let it poached before stirring everything together and enjoyed this deliciously comforting stew with steamed rice.

The beef bulgogi was served on a stone plate.  It was quite delicious with a bowl of rice as it was tender and had the right amount sweet and savoury flavour.

 The rice was served in a stone pot.  The waitress scoop out a generous amount into a separate bowl before pouring tea, which tasted like toasted rice, into the stone bowl.  The rice became softened, like a porridge.  It was interesting, but I still prefer dry rice with my bulgogi and tofu stew.

The verdict
I had a good experience at House of Tofu Soup.  The service was quick, the price was reasonable, the portions and quality were worth the value.  The 2 of us were stuffed and satisfied.  There is no reason not to return!

House of Tofu Soup on Urbanspoon

Monday, August 22, 2011

Butternut squash soup recipe

Today I am sharing a simple recipe for making a hearty, velvety butternut squash soup that tastes as delicious as at the restaurants.  I think you will love the delicate and natural flavour of butternut squash that really come through in the soup.  Butternut squash is also a very nutritious fruit (I feel weird writing that, but they are because they have seeds), containing high amounts of beta-cerotene, potassium, fiber, Vitamin A, B6 and C.

1 butternut squash
1/3 julienned onion
500 ml chicken stock
2 tbsp. butter
250 ml milk
salt and pepper
olive oil or truffle oil
heavy cream or creme fraiche to garnish

Cut up butternut squash, peel and seeded.  In a large pot, melt butter and sauté onion until softened.  Add butternut squash and chicken stock.  Bring to boil until softened.  In a blender, puree the mixture together. Transfer the mixture back into the pot.  Add milk and stir the soup.  Add salt to taste.  Leave to simmer at low heat for about 20-30 minutes.  The longer you leave the soup to simmer, the more velvety smooth it becomes.  Drizzle with olive or truffle oil and cream and serve immediately.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Meat & Bread inspired porchetta sandwich

Being at school and 2 minutes away from Meat & Bread make it very difficult to constantly not think about their famous, juicy, crispy porchetta sandwich.  While I had lost the battle with temptation a few times and ran across the street for my roast pork fix, I took the idea home to try to recreate that similar experience from my own kitchen.  Living in Richmond, finding porchetta at a specialty store is not easy.  Finding chinese barbecue meat, however, is more than convenient.  This time, I settled for the chinese version of porchetta, siew yuk, which is close enough that they may as well be siblings.  The meat is salty with bits of fat with thick, crispy skin.  The more well-known place to find crispy roast pork would be at Parker Place (I don't know the name, but there's always a line up).  This recipe takes little effort and very easy!  I'm sure the meat lovers will really enjoy this.  The resulting creation has similar savoury, crunchy, fatty texture, which would definitely satisfy your appetite.

1/2 cup roasted pork cut into smaller pieces
2 whole wheat flatbread (or any type of bread preferred), buttered
chili sauce
dijion mustard

Unless the roasted pork are fresh from the shop, you may want to pop them in the oven for about 15 minutes to make sure the skin is golden crispy.  The skin is pretty much the core of this sandwich. Toast the flatbread with buttered sides down in a skellet until golden, and set aside.  Stuff the flatbread with roasted pork, add dollops of pesto, dijion mustard, and chili sauce.  Serve with soup or a side of salad.

So simple, quick and delicious!