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Le Bernardin

3 Jun

It’s been months since I last posted, but I did not have much to live for let alone write for.  Recently, Blister, the doctor, recommended that I eliminate all seafood, dairy, gluten, fruit, and nuts from my diet due to my severe allergies.  For weeks, I suffered.  After a recent visit to my allergist, she finally set me free and advised that elimination diets create super allergies.  Yes, Avengers allergies.  Blister the saboteur.  When I informed her of my allergist’s medical opinion, she just laughed and said, “I helped you lose five pounds, didn’t I?”  Blister, the cause of my demise and BDD.

Due to my unreasonable diet, the thought of writing about food killed me.  Now that I can eat again, let’s discuss New York.  Years ago during my freshman year in college, I went to New York to visit some friends.  It was my first trip to New York as an adult, and I was excited.  A bag, a bus ticket, a few girlfriends, and a lot of spontaneity led us to a weekend in New York.  As soon as we arrived, we realized spontaneity was slightly overrated.  There were three 18 year old girls without accommodations in a big, scary city.  In our minds, the nights would be full of so much partying that making reservations of any kind seemed futile.  But once the parties , after parties, and after after parties were over, we were homeless with no where to go.  Luckily, a friend who resided in the NYU dorms, snuck us in to the study rooms where we slept like squatters.  We slept under the desks and used the chairs as camouflage. We lacked blankets, showers, and pajamas, and used our one bag filled with hoochie mama disposable tops as a make-shift pillow.

Fast-forward 13 years.  Still filled with the same excitement and girlfriends in tote, we were on our way to New York City again.  This time, we had hotel reservations at … the Waldorf Astoria.  As we walked to our room, I noticed this.

Ooooooh sheeit.

The foyer.

The living room.

The view from the living room.

The formal dining room.

The kitchen.

The master bedroom.

The second bedroom.

The third bedroom.

As I walked around this palace fit for a Zamunda King, I imagined how many homeless 18 year old girls could sleep in this place.   Like Papi Chula said, “Sisters are doin’ it for themselves.”  And we were.  Not only did we have showers, but we had an unlimited supply of Ferragamo shampoo, conditioner, and soap.  As hard as it was to leave this mansion, we had to go to Le Bernardin for Blister’s birthday dinner especially since a significant deposit was required just to secure the reservation.

Amuse bouche

I’m not usually a fan of sea urchin, but as of late I have grown fond of it. I’m especially fond of it when it’s topped with salty caviar, a wonderful way to wake the taste buds.

Caviar-Wagyu

For my “Almost Raw” starter, the blend of Nebraska wagyu beef and langoustine topped with a generous layer of caviar was worth the $45 supplemental charge.  The pepper Vodka crème fraîche fills in the chewy bites of tartare for a creamy well-rounded bite.  Instead of layering the tartare on the provided “Ruffles” potato chips, I preferred smothering the delicious blend on the warm bread that regularly circulated throughout the night.

Because Blister and I are geniuses, we ordered different dishes and shared them to try more of the items offered by the silver fox Eric Ripert. She ordered the tuna– layers of thinly pounded yellowfin tuna, foie gras, toasted baguette, chives, and olive oil.

The tuna was a vibrant orange and beautiful to look at, but it was mediocre in taste.  It tasted like tuna and the foie gras had a pasty consistency that did not seduce me like foie gras usually does.  The wagyu kicked the tuna’s ass.

I ordered the langoustine for the “Barely Touched” second course.

The langoustine was perfectly seared and succulent.  I always face a dilemma when it comes to fleshy shellfish.  On one hand, I want to pop the entire morsel of succulent meat into my mouth.  On the other hand, it’s so delicious that it should be slowly savored.  Lucky for me, Mr. Ripert gave me two.  One to slowly savor with small bites and the other to completely devour with my eyes closed.

I also enjoyed Miggy’s Sea Medley.

A beautiful display of the ocean’s gifts in one small little package, but the best part of this national treasure is the smoked bonito broth.  It is the perfect warm temperature touched with a hint of uni and caviar.  When I die, I imagine God welcoming me into the gates of heaven with a cup of this smoked bonito broth.

For my third “Lightly Cooked” dish, I asked the waiter for the fish that the contestants on Top Chef had to replicate seasons ago.  The waiter had no idea what episode I was talking about and brought other waiters for further investigation.  They caucused and agreed it was Mr. Ripert’s striped bass.

The top layer of skin was not crispy enough.  After watching that Top Chef episode, I was expecting a  super crispy and flaky top layer.  The fish itself was perfectly cooked, but I did not like the black-garlic Persian lemon sauce.  It had a sharp bitter flavor that I could not identify but it tasted like star-anise’s cousin.  I would have enjoyed this dish more if the black-garlic sauce was substituted with the smoked bonito broth.  In fact, just pour that broth over everything.

For dessert, I ordered the apple-cinnamon which consisted of cinnamon caramel cream, green apple foam, candied walnut, and red wine caramel.

I took off its hat and found this:

It tasted like a modern apple pie.  The “hat” was crunchy and light, and the sauces swirled to make the most perfect bite of apple pie.  Even though I hate foam, it really worked in this sweet treat.  Ending this three-hour meal with apple pie and a hot cappuccino was the cherry on top.  Of course, I had to instruct the waiter to add the splenda before the cappuccino foam … a first for the barista according to the waiter.  I hate when the splenda gets caught in the foam and not in the cappuccino.

I was so full that I could not even touch the after dinner freebies.

I understand why Le Bernardin is ranked 19th best restaurant in the world.  It is definitely two whole Michelin stars greater and better than Providence and Melisse.  Although I no longer will rank restaurants on vacation due to my tendency to love everything because I’m on vacation, anyone who enjoys seafood should pay the proper deposit, make a reservation, and enjoy.

Blister loved her birthday dinner, company, and conversations of placenta, daddy dicks, and your usual girl talk.

Le Bernardin
The Equitable Building
155 W 51st St
New York, NY

 

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I left my heart in San Francisco

13 Mar

Since Blister’s in the Philippines for new year’s eve, we couldn’t go to our annual new year’s trip to Glen Ivy. So this year, Bubby and I went to San Francisco, the city where we fell in love. Our first date was at Palomino in Embarcadero. The food was not particularly good, but I was nervous. We were friends for so long and ate together all the time, but on this January 30th day, 7 years ago, I had butterflies in my stomach. After dinner, he held my hand as we walked along the pier. I was jumping on and off of the stoops, and he held my hand for my “safety” so I wouldn’t fall. It was more like a slicker version of the “yawn and reach” technique at the movie theater. Since that day, we just knew we were meant to be together. No DTR conversations, no “where do we stand?” inquiries, no “it’s complicated” relationship status. We just knew we were together and have never broken up since. Sure, there are times when he’s my greatest enemy and I want to punch him hard in the balls, but most days he’s my best friend.

Going back to San Francisco is always a treat. I love walking down the dirty streets of my old hood, the Tenderloin. Stepping on spit, fecal matter, and used needles never felt so good–kind of like an urban version of Dorothy and her yellow brick road. Although my brick road is stained yellow from urine– both animal and human. I also love going back to San Fran for the food. Always for the food.

Our hotel was located in Fisherman’s Wharf, a tourist trap.  The best part of this tourist trap is Trish’s Mini Donuts.  These fried rings are worth the six-hour drive from LA.  Every time I go to SF, I always try to fight the tourist trap traffic just to get my hands on these fried babies.

They are liberally showered in cinnamon sugar which eventually melts into the super hot fried dough.  I have never ordered a tub of these mini donuts, but one day I will.  Cha-longe!!!

On New Year’s day, we decided to go to Brenda’s, the only Cajun restaurant in the Tenderloin.  As a former Houstonian, I love Cajun food.  We decided to go on New Year’s day assuming the crowd would be hung over in bed.  On our walk to Brenda’s, we noticed some stragglers still partying at noon the next day.

I cannot remember the last time I partied until the sun came up. I feel old.

As we walked towards Brenda’s this is what I saw.

Oh hell no.  That line is not cute.  We had to wait for an hour and 45 minutes.  Bubby had been before, and he made me wait for my crawdads.  And dammit, he had me at crawdads.

After watching every crazy homeless person pass by, some familiar faces and some new, our table was finally ready.  The restaurant is packed with tables only two inches apart from each other.  I immediately ordered the watermelon iced tea to ease my anxiety and claustrophobia.

Sometimes sweet tea outside of the south can be way too sweet.  But this watermelon iced tea was perfectly cool and sweet. It reminded me of a hot Houston day and the smell of fresh-cut green grass.

Crawfish beignets with cayenne, scallions, and cheddar

Brenda’s serves several different kinds of beignets including plain with powdered sugar, apple, chocolate.  I ordered crawfish because I love crawfish.  The beignets are served hot, fluffy, and they collapsed with the pressure from my fork.  As I broke into the dough, the melted cheese oozed out.  Unfortunately, the ratio of crawfish to dough is off.  I expected large chunks of crawfish, but there were probably three small ones swimming in cheese in each pocket of dough.

I ordered the grillades and grits, and Bubby ordered the fried catfish eggs benedict.

The beef cutlets in the grillades and grits was tough and difficult to chew.  The grits were fluffy clouds perfectly buttered and smothered in cheddar cheese.  Nothing makes my belly smile more than buttered grits and cheese.  Bubby’s catfish eggs benedict was not as good as we imagined, but the biscuit was slap yo’ mama good.  That biscuit was it.   Would I wait two hours for it? Probably not.

Bubby and I needed to burn some serious Cajun calories, so I dragged him to Union Square for some serious shopping.  While in Union Square, Bubby and I always have to eat at King of Thai Noodle.  It’s not fancy Thai food, but serves really good roast duck.

Bubby always orders the duck fried rice with a fried egg on top, and I order the duck noodle soup.

Simple.  Duck.  Noodles.  Soup.  Peppers.  Good.
I haven’t tried the other dishes because there really is no need to.  This is the only dish I order every time.

The next day, I dragged Bubby to Hog Island Oyster Co.  I had a serious craving for oysters.  But once again, we hit another damn line.

The wait was not as bad as Brenda’s, probably 30 minutes total.  I ordered fresh lemonade to prep my taste buds.

We ordered both fresh and baked oysters.  The fresh ones included Hog Island Sweetwaters, Hog Island Atlantics, Sand Isle Kumamotos, Chelsea Gems, and Island Creeks.

These fresh oysters were thick and smooth as they slid down my throat.  The kumamotos had a slight “oceany” tang which I let Bubby enjoy.

The baked oysters were actually as tasty as the fresh ones to my surprise.

The Casino and Tarragon oysters were so flavorful.  The only bad thing about them was that there were only four.

The clam chowder

The clam chowder is not your typical clam chowder.  It’s not thick, but light and milky.  I added a splash of fresh lemon juice which really brightened the taste of the clams.  I loved dipping my grilled cheese into the chowder broth.

The crunchy sourdough bread and the stringy cheese dipped into the milkiness wonder of the clam chowder felt like a perfect hug from the inside on a cold January San Francisco day.  The pickled vegetables, cauliflower and carrots, added a nice acidic note to the entire meal.

As we walked back to our car to head home, we picked up some road trip treats in the Ferry Building.  Miette’s macarons and Blue Bottle Coffee Co.’s cappuccino.

The vanilla was way better than the chocolate.  Even Bubby, chocolate lover, agreed.

And for the last damn time, a San Franciscan line at the Blue Bottle Coffee Co.

Good strong caffeinated drinks.  Too bad it wasn’t strong enough to keep me awake during our car ride back to LA.  I always fall asleep in the car like a behbeh.

Goodbye, San Francisco.  I’ll always hold a special place in my heart for this beautiful city.  Where else could you find an Asian family all dressed in matching puffer jackets?

Trish’s Mini Donuts
Embarcadero Pier 39, Bldg B
San Francisco, CA

Brenda’s
652 Polk St
San Francisco, CA

King of Thai Noodle
184 O’Farrell St
San Francisco, CA

(duck noodle soup only)

Hog Island Oyster Co.
1 Ferry Bldg
San Francisco, CA
   

Miette Patisserie
1 Ferry Bldg
San Francisco, CA
   

Blue Bottle Coffee Co.
1 Ferry Bldg
San Francisco, CA
  

Providence

11 Mar

Last year for annual mistress day, Bubby took me to Melisse. And if you remember, Melisse did not deliver the 2 Michelin stars as advertised. This year, Bubby took me to Providence– the other LA restaurant with 2 Michelin stars. I’ve heard wonderful things about Providence, except that contrary cunt Nibs was the only person who didn’t rave about the food.

SPOTTED: Rich, older lonely boys and the young gold diggers who love them. (Can you tell I just watched a marathon of Gossip Girl recently?) I tried to look for wedding rings on the fingers of both parties and spotted none. Bubby and I tried to discretely turn our backs 180 degrees just to find our favorite couples. Note to self, twisting at that exaggerated angle is never discreet.

Bubby enjoyed a beer while I enjoyed a glass of a delicious medley of juices including lychee, guava, passion fruit, and other exotic treasures that the bartender could muster. It was as delicious as the welcome juice given to the guests at Phuket’s Dusit Laguna Hotel — the most delicious standard for all juices.

This juice was so refreshing but cost more than Bubby’s beer.  Seven dollars of juice.

The amuse bouche

The spoon on the left was a yellow egg-yolk-like version of a screwdriver.  Refreshing and a nice burst of cold alcohol in your mouth.  The square jello on the right was a mojito.  The screwdriver was definitely better than the mojito.

The second amuse bouche

This trio was not as good as the first amuse bouche.  Sipping a luke warm soup from a straw is not a great way of starting a marathon of courses.  I hoped this was not an accurate representation of what was to come.

The bacon brioche

Bubby ate like 8 of these. He described them as bite size wonders that tasted like Jack in the Box’s sourdough jack burgers. He doesn’t even love bacon as much as I do, and he couldn’t get enough of these. I even caught him checking out the size of my purse to see how many miniature wonders I could confiscate safely from the premises. Unfortunately, I carried my small clutch.

Tai snapper sashimi, sake, caviar, salted cherry blossom

The sashimi was fresh and tasted more like yellowtail than snapper. It lacked that chewy consistency that sometimes accompanies snapper sashimi. The snapper’s texture was soft and the caviar, salty. There was a gelatinous layer that I didn’t even mind. In fact, I liked it. But I really loved the yellow rice cracker balls that added the perfect crunch.

Santa Barbara spot prawns, nori bread crumbs, spring herbs

That prawn looks like it’s on roids. It was perfectly cooked and succulent. I did not care for the random herbs, the bread crumbs, or the cat spit foam. In fact, I hate cat spit.  Why do these upscale restaurants find the need to add cat spit? Stop with the cat spit!  It’s not creative, and it’s no longer cool. But most importantly, it looks like the bile that Miso vomits.

Main lobster, charcoal grilled, smoked black truffle butter

This dish looks like Valentine’s Day. The arrangement of the lobster, the colors of my wedding, is perfection. And it tasted the way it looked. Thick pieces of fresh lobster made me want to cry like Homer did when he ate Pinchy.

I, too, felt that I loved Pinchy the most and should respect him by eating him all by myself. Piiiiiiiinchy!!!!!!!

Foie gras ravioli – a la carte

We ordered this dish separately because of the amazing reviews. Also, I’m trying to eat as much foie gras possible before they ban it in California in July. The waiter even recommended making reservations for a foie gras exclusive menu. I’m seriously considering arranging a small dinner party called a Farewell to Foie Gras. These raviolis made me want to cry.  It was like looking at a boyfriend knowing that it won’t last.  It’s so hard to say goodbye to yesterday…. Boyz II Men.

The pasta was perfectly thin, the foie gras rich and decadent.  I will have to cross some state lines to get my foie gras kick.  Trust.

Wild New Zealand john dory, foie gras, white port, spring vegetables

By the time we reached this course, I was busting out of my skirt.  The courses were separated by 15 minutes, and it only takes 7 minutes for my stomach to tell my brain, “Bitch, you full.”  I was fighting the good fight, and I had to have a bite of each dish.  The john dory was tender and flavorful, and I really enjoyed the crispy and crunchy skin.  I really regretted wasting stomach space on the amuse bouche trio.  Rookie mistake.

Duck breast, petit pois, pea greens

I love duck.  One of the perks of marrying a Chinese man is having Peking duck on the regular.  I literally sing my song of joy when the Chinese waiter brings that huge plate of crispy duck and its soft pillow friends.  It is on point just like the duck at Providence.  The duck at Providence melts in your mouth.  It felt like buttered bread that melts on your tongue.  I had to chew like three times before it was ready to be swallowed.  And to seal the deal, the fried ball of foie gras.

I love fried balls of anything, but fried balls of foie gras takes the cake.

Fennel, yellow chartreuse, Angelica root, yogurt

The yogurt was enjoyable and provided a great palate cleanser.  The plate in its entirety was just okay.

Chocolate surprise

The Valentine’s day menu included a dessert that was basically chocolate served with chocolate.  Earlier in the meal, I told our waiter that I wasn’t a fan of chocolate, so he brought me a special dessert that was completely chocolate free.

My surprise dessert

This plate of heaven was more than I could ask for with ice cream, meringue, and hints of lemon.  The fact that they substituted the chocolate madness with the perfect treat for me, I couldn’t be happier.  Well played, Providence.  Well played.

Our farewell treat

I left this box as is.  I could not eat another bite.  Bubby had to roll my fat ass out of that restaurant at 11:30 p.m.  Yes, the entire dinner took longer than 3 hours.  I was feeling a mix of emotions … full, sleepy, tired, happy, drunk with food.

Providence is exponentially better than Melisse.  I could also tell the difference of an All Star Chef and Top Chef based on my experience at Ink recently (review soon to come). If it wasn’t for the liberal use of cat spit, I would have given Providence a perfect rating.

Providence
5955 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA

Maui, Hawaii Part 1

24 Jan

I’m 31 today. I have been drinking legally for 10 years today. A full decade of buying my own liquor. No stealing Blister’s ID to sneak into clubs and memorizing that she’s an Aries and graduated from high school in 1996 just in case the bouncer asks. No paying that significantly older guy in the circle of friends to buy everyone’s liquor. Isn’t it weird that every high school crew had that one older friend who always hung out with the high school kids when he was like a hard 27? Anyway, I’m 31. To celebrate my 21st tenth year anniversary, Bubby took me to Maui. It was either Maui or theYSL bag I had my eye on for the last few months. And sinceYSL can’t give me a tan, loco moco, or four days off of work … Aloha, baby.

We are staying at the Makena Resort, south of Wailea. Here’s our view from our balcony. Golf course on the left and ocean on the right.

Since Bubby and I were working until the minute we boarded our plane, we didn’t know what to expect. We figured Maui was like Honolulu and everything was within walking distance. It’s not. You must rent a car and don’t wait until the last minute to rent one because the lady working at Enterprise will laugh in your face and let you know that all car rentals are gone for the entire island. Luckily, Budget at the Grand Wailea had 2 cars left. A convertible or the jeep. We chose this bad boy:

That’s right. Cherry red stang. Man, driving in Hawaii with the top down, sun on your shoulders, and wind in your hair makes one feel like a teenage boy full of testosterone. If Bubby was a teenage girl, I’d take her in the back seat and pop her cherry in my cherry stang. But Bubby is 30 so I turned up the Phil Collins and belt out an obligatory, older lady’s “woo hoo!”

I was itchin’ for some poke so we drove to The Fish Market in Lahaina. I requested that he make mine spicy.

The ahi is super fresh and the spicy soy sauce, onions, green onions, vinegar sauce was perfect. This is the perfect snack because it’s light, spicy, and savory. For lunch, Bubby ordered the ahi burger and I ordered a Hawaiian white fish (I can’t remember the name because I have vacay brain) with a side of mac salad.

I poured the left over poke sauce on my fish because it lacked flavor. Bubby disliked the onion bun on his burger.  The next time I come to The Fish Market, I’ll order a full pound of the spicy poke on a bed of rice. I’m a simple girl. After we stuffed our faces,we went to Kapua beach. Here’s Bubby lost at sea.


This beach looks nice but had rocks scattered all over the bottom of the ocean, making it difficult to squeeze the sand between my monkey toes. The ocean temperature is a lot colder than the ocean in Waikiki but it’s probably because the masses in Waikiki are probably pissing in the ocean and raising its overall temperature. And for that, I can handle fripples.

I’ve been to Hawaii several times but have never been to a Hawaiian lu’au. Bubby made reservations for us at Old Lahaina Lu’au and you can imagine my surprise when all of the waiters looked like this:

And this:

I immediately sent these photos to Blister and she responded with a “DAYUM! Which lu’au did you go to … chippendales Maui.” Yes, Blister. DAYUM, indeed. I couldn’t stop staring at the waiters, especially the ones with the tatted sleeves. My gawking was a level 10 that Bubby agreed to get a tattoo as long as it was original and meaningful. Happy birthday to me.

The buffet at the lu’au offered your typical Hawaiian options. They even dug out the swine from the ground.  The recurring theme for me in Hawaii was to stack my plate with so much food that it resembles a trough.

DAMN IT! My stupid Ipad just ate the rest of my blog post.  STUPID IPAD. I basically broke down every single item on this plate in a clockwise fashion and now it’s gone.  STUPID IPAD.  Speaking of Ipad, we were sitting on the beach in Maui and I told Bubby, “Oh no, there is so much sand in my Ipad … that’s annoying.”  And my smart-ass husband muttered, “White people problems.”

Anyway, I also wrote a long love letter to the guava/strawberry butter at the lu’au. I was raving on and on about how decadent this magical butter tasted to my husband, and this rude girl sitting across from us (1) overheard our conversation and (2) stuck her dirty ass finger through my precious butter. WHAT THE WHAT?!  Kids are so rude these days.  After licking her dirty ass finger she looked at me and nodded, “it is good.”  Damn Omar Little, jackin’ my shit.

In sum, the lu’au had tasty butter, chicken long rice (the noodles in the small black cup), and tattooed eye candy.

The Fish Market
3600 L. Honoapiilani Road
Lahaina, Hawaii
(the poke deserves 5 fresh claps but the other dishes deserve 2)

Old Lahaina Lu’au
1251 Front Street
Lahaina, Hawaii
(the food deserves 2 claps but the staff deserves a standing ovation and 6 claps symbolizing their 6-pack abs, Good morning!)

Christmas 2011

3 Jan

I love Christmas!  The wrapping paper, the red Starbucks cups, the candy canes, lights, baked goods galore, and dressing Miso up for our annual holiday card.  This year he was a reindeer, but next year’s card will have him as the reindeer, Santa, and elf (past Christmas card costumes).  The pain and suffering in his eyes when dressed in these ridiculous outfits is definitely the true meaning of Christmas.  Here he is in his onesie photobombing my picture of all of the Christmas presents I purchased for others this year.

He always looks like a baby when dressed in his onesie, but he gets so damn lazy.  Look at this lazy bitch.

He would not move off these pillows all day.

I also obviously love Christmas for the food.  All the red and green colored foods that make it feel like you’re literally eating Christmas.

Strawberry Waffles

Bubby made these delicious waffles for me when I was craving breakfast food for dinner.

Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas

I used manchego cheese which is essential for any good enchilada or quesadilla.  I took the leftover rotisserie chicken, shredded the meat, and stuffed it into these bad boys.  The top picture is for Bubby who doesn’t like cheese as much as I do but later regretted not having a thick layer of manchego cheese on top of his enchiladas.

Turkey Meatballs

turkey meatballs

I used Giada’s recipe as a guideline to make these turkey meatballs even though she’s the most annoying person on television.  Really, does she have to over- enunciate every Italian word?!  I poured a liberal amount of vodka and made a creamy vodka sauce.

For Christmas lunch, I prepared Roast Prime Rib and Chicken & Lobster Pot Pie

The roast rib came out to a perfect medium rare pink.  It was as good as Lawry’s for a fraction of the price.  For 10 lbs of roast rib from Whole Foods, it cost around $112.  That’s basically two orders of prime rib, but my roast fed 8 people with a lot left over.  I made the pot pie because it’s my father-in-law’s favorite.  Apparently, he was muttering, “ho sic” which means good in Cantonese.   “Ho sic,” “oh, shit” is right.  This pot pie was good.   I used already-made pie crust because I wasn’t trying to reinvent the wheel.  Pie crust is so hard to make, trust me … it sucks.  But what doesn’t suck, is this rich and creamy pot pie.  Next year, I won’t sprinkle the already made pie crust with sea salt because the pie crust was already salted.  Good tip.

Au jus

Blister almost shit her pants when she saw the fat drippings I used to make this au jus.  Do not use as much red wine as suggested, it gives the au jus a tangy aftertaste. I also made some sour cream horseradish sauce for the prime rib but forgot to take a picture.

Blister made the creamed corn and was, again, shocked by the bacon grease required to give this corn a smokey flavor.

BBQ Baked Beans

I made these baked beans for my dad thinking it was his favorite, but he barely touched them.  No more Christmas baked beans.

Gingered Carrots

I left these carrots in the oven 15 minutes too long.  The ends got slightly burned.  I cut the tips off and ate the rest.  (That’s what she said.)

After stuffing our faces with nearly 3,000 calories, we opened our gifts.  Look at what Santa brought me.

I was very good this year.
The lazy bitch eventually jumped off the pillows, but look at how the lazy bitch wrapped himself up in cashmere.

I love Christmas!

Newport Tan Cang Seafood

16 Nov

The holiday season is near.  I love this time of year.  Thanksgiving (the holiday that started this blog), Christmas, New Years, Bubby’s birthday, El Ninja’s birthday, and my mom’s birthday.  Unfortunately, I won’t be able to attend my firm holiday party this year because it’s Bubby’s birthday.  I guess it’s not a bad thing especially since last year’s holiday party was a disaster.  Here was the conversation:

Me: Hey!
Sweetest Assistant Ever: Hi!
Me: Is that your husband?
SAE: Noooo……….she’s my cousin.
Me: …


Me: I’m so sorry, I’m really drunk.

I really wasn’t drunk, but I felt awful.  The entire night her manly cousin shot imaginary darts at me with her eyes.  It was the worst ever.  At least I won’t have to run into her cousin this year.  My big mouth.  It’s evil yet so good when it comes to eating.

This year for El Ninja’s birthday, he wanted to go to Newport Seafood.  We usually go to Newport for my dad’s birthday, he loves the lobster.  El Ninja enjoyed the whole fried fish, and now that he’s a pescatarian, it was an obvious choice.  What wasn’t so obvious was my parents birthday invitation to a complete stranger.  She’s not a complete stranger since she’s in the same English class as my dad, but she’s a complete stranger to our family.  My parents thought it would be completely normal and sane to bring my brother a blind date to HIS birthday dinner! What the what?!  Yes, my Korean parents brought this poor little girl who barely speaks English to meet my brother on his birthday and to have the entire family present for their first blind date.  Blister and I couldn’t help but wonder how trusting this girl is to accompany random people in a strange country to a restaurant.  What if we decided to kill her as a family sacrifice? [LADIES: When traveling, please do not get into strangers’ cars and have dinners with their crazy families even if the meal is free.]   To make matters worse, the poor girl sat in between my parents volleying each parent’s conversation as her head went right to left in a Linda Blair-like fashion.  Even if my brother expressed any type of interest, he wouldn’t have been able to get a word in edgewise.  Bubby whispered, “Your father is a horrible wingman.”

Besides the awkward moments provided by my loving parents, the food was good as always.

Lobster

What makes this lobster dish so special is the roe.

It’s chewy and soft and scrumptious.  The lobster is tossed with perfect amounts of spice, garlic, scallions.  Perfection.

Fish

The house fish in garlic chili sauce is a new family staple.   You can definitely taste the Vietnamese fish sauce, ginger, hot pepper, fried basil, and garlic in the sauce.  The fish is deep fried, so everything is edible.  I particularly enjoy the fried fish cheeks.  I definitely want to recreate this sauce at home and pour it on everything.

Pea sprouts

Another staple.  I love these tasty sprouts. They aren’t overly sauteed where the greens lose their crunch.  It’s such a delicious vegetable and severely underrated.

Beef Cubes

I don’t know why we continue to order this dish, but the salt and lime dipping sauce is my favorite.  This is a typical dish you can find at any Chinese or Vietnamese restaurant.

The new additions: Fried tofu, calamari, and pan fried noodles

This is one of my favorite dishes.  The fried tofu is fresh out of the fryer and super hot that it burned the roof of my mouth.  But it’s worth the third degree burn.  The tofu is soft and fleshy on the inside and the crispy coating is perfect, not too thick.  Bubby and I had a ten minute conversation on whether we thought the tofu was fried or breaded then fried.  The discussion remains open.  Regardless, I love this dish and the perfect soy dipping sauce.

The calamari had the same salt/lime dipping sauce I enjoy with my beef cubes.  Blister advised that I not order this dish, but I did anyway.  She was right, it was uneventful.

I took one bite of this dish and said, “Niet!”  I think Bubby enjoyed this dish, he loves him some noodies.

For the lobster, the fish, the pea sprouts, and tofu, I give Newport Seafood a perfect score.  It is a family tradition and will always be the best renovated Marie Callender ever.

Newport Tan Cang Seafood
518 W Las Tunas Dr
San Gabriel, CA

Skirball Cultural Center

3 Nov

Ladies and gents, please welcome my very first guest blogger, MEXICUNNIE!  Mexicunnie has graciously offered to provide a post about my wedding food since I was unable to taste what cost so much dough.  Enjoy. ~ M&C

***

Hi! I’m Mexicunnie, your guest amateur blogger for the evening.

Obviously I am honored to have been elected to blog about Meat and Confer’s wedding feast, though sadly I will be able to offer my views solely on the Southern side of the buffet.  Why, you ask, did I not partake in the food from the Asian and carving stations? Many reasons, but namely I was 8 months preggo and craving some of that good ol’ home cookin’.  And, more importantly, I had already stacked my plate so precariously high with chicken ‘n thangs that I did not have a speck of room left on the plate by the time I made it to the Asian side. It was the sharks vs. the jets and I was clearly a jet.

Here is my street cred which enables me to talk with some authority about this particular fare:

I am the granddaughter of a woman named Ruby Lee (for reals that was her name). Now, Ruby Lee was born in a Mississippi briar patch and was still a young girl when the Great Depression hit.  The particular part of Mississippi from which my white half hails is still po’ as hell so you can imagine they didn’t have much of anything during those troubled economic times.  This enabled my granny to become nothing short of a culinary MacGyver, fashioning delectable eats from flour and water and bitches better look out if she ever got a hold of some hog.  I remember she had a bowl designated just for making biscuits. She kept flour in the bowl along with an old timey tin flour sifter in it. Every day she got this bowl out, sifted the flour, added milk and eggs and such to the bowl, hand mixed the biscuit dough, and then gently rolled it into little delicate clouds.  This woman was legit, ok.?  Trust.   And I share her blood line and I spent every summer and every spring break with her until the summer before medical school when she passed away.  I watched her cook.  I paid attention.  But mostly I just ate like I was on death row.   M&C and Blister always say my super power is to eat and not weigh 400 pounds.  Looking back, it IS a wonder I was not morbidly obese.  Fried chicken, cornbread, pork and rice, chicken ‘n dressin, pink eye purple hull peas (damn I shelled so many bushels of those peas but triple damn they were worth it!)…I tasted the best the deep South had to offer so that pretty much makes me the expert around here.  I also spent the school years living in Texas, the state which always seems to provide the majority entries to the “Fattest Cities in America” list every year.  That’s because TX has some seriously awesome restaurants, y’all.  Houston, you’re delicious and a friggin fatty and you know it’s true.

I, myself, have tried different restaurants around L.A. touting that they offer real Southern food, but none of them really deliver (exception might be Dr. Hoggly Woggly’s Texas BBQ in Sherman Oaks but don’t even get me started about Roscoe’s, folks).  So I find it truly bizarre that the best Southern food that I have experienced in these here parts came from the Skirball center where the wedding reception took place.  I’m sure the chefs there are used to doling out filet mignon or seabass or some shit…but fried chicken? Come on.  I am here to attest, however, that whatever sweet-tits was responsible for rendering this chicken so crispy, so fried, so moist, so brined, so succulent- that person has a true gift.  That chicken was not only scrumptious, it defied all regulations and dogma. I was taught that you shouldn’t ever fry chicken without the bone in (my husband loves cracking a joke every time I use the phrase “bone in”, so shout out to him right now). The bone provides moisture and, above all, flavor to the chicken meat.  What jackhole would ever remove the bone?  Well, apparently it CAN be done and it was done at the Skirball.  That bird was boneless and above reproach.

<Note, if I had my druthers, I would enter a youtube clip of the movie “Circle of Friends” where Alan Cummings as the creepy Sean Walsh is at dinner with Minnie Driver and her parents and says “I’ve never tasted a more succulent birrrrrd…the richness of it and the flavor…all in all indisputable.>

(Thanks for the pics, Pelota.)

Then there was a creamy nouveau riche mac & cheese and greens that had some good sabor.  I judge Mexican restaurants by the salsa and I judge Southern food by the greens.  If they fuck up the greens (Roscoe’s I am looking at you, girl), then forget it.  Immediate dismissal.  But these greens made me say umph.

The only thing I could teach the Skirball is how to make better cornbread and how to add obscene amounts of butter to both the cornbread and the sweet mashed potatoes to get it tasting right.  The cornbread was dry.  You have to make cornbread in a pone.   You can’t make it in big batches like they tried to do, or it will come out dessicated.  Unlucky for them that they had to make cornbread for a crowd.  Oh well,  that chicken was 5 clap worthy so I ain’t mad atcha.  I want to add here since I just made a brief homage to butter that Anthony Bourdain is a real asshole.   I confess that I respect him in general because he has a well-cultivated palate and is ostensibly well-traveled but to criticize a Southern cook like Paula Deen for loving herself some recipes with butter as the main ingredient is just asinine,  All Southern cooks love butter and use butter unabashedly.  It’s merely in their nature. Does he go around yelling at dogs for licking their balls? I mean, really.   Anthony Bourdain was a dick for attacking that sweet magnolia flower, Paula Deen (who talks just like my mom by the way), for being herself and loving butter.  Anthony Bourdain, I would punch your smug ass face and then I would make you take me to Southeast Asia where we would find that Balinese pig you talked so much about- you know the one roasting on a spit getting all gussied up and basted by a rag on a stick- that was a good episode.   I digress.

The last thing I want to mention is the donut lady, “The Fry Girl” or something like that (catchy right?).  Now that the wedding is over, the donut lady is no longer an international secret and other people can now hire the donut lady to make their event super luxe.   The donut lady has a small stand and a little helper elf and a genius deep frying machine which turns out little donuts the size of a dollar coin- the batter enters on one end and floats lazily down a river of fryin’ grease until it is soft on the inside and crisp on the outside.   Then you get to choose the flavor on top- powdered sugar, cinnamon, jam, etc.   Homer Simpson would literally jizz his pants.  Basically if I had extra time on my hands, I would find the donut lady at her house, stand beneath her window, and hold up a boombox that plays Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes.”

It’s funny how you just take home specific memories from an event. For me, the wedding jogs musings of Miso in a tux, Blister looking like a Korean soap star, M&C never looking more radiant and glam, and a couple very much in love.  Oh, and the chicken ‘n donuts.  Mmmmm…donuts.

Skirball Cultural Center
2701 North Sepulveda Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA

The Fry Girl
www.thefrygirlinc.com

Masan

6 Jul

I’ve been on this ridiculous wedding diet.  Blister was like, “You’re the only bride I know who is pigging out before her wedding.  Usually, brides want to look their best, not their fattest.”  And because of this, I’ve been going to wedding boot camp of four straight days of hell at Pure Barre.  More like Pure Hell.  It’s intense ballet, yoga, and pilates which definitely has reshaped my muscles.  But it’s so hard that the thought of eating food makes me feel horrible because it’s never worth the pain I feel in Pure Barre.  Well, some foods are worth the pain, but not all.  I have 4 weeks left of this intensive strength training, and then I’m back on the fat wagon.  Also, I want to look my best for my husband-to-be during our honeymoon in Barbados.  I told Bubby that my body will be at its ultimate peak during Barbados and after that, it’s downhill with post-pregnancy stretch marks, fat rolls, and flabby skin.  He seemed sad.

Although I’m not dining anywhere new until after our wedding, we have been to several restaurants that I need to post an update for, including Masan.  I’ve heard of Masan several times before, the restaurant where you can order san nakji (live octopus).  I’ve always wanted to try san nakji ever since I watched the movie, “Old Boy.”  While others in the movie theater squirmed with disgust, I whispered to Bubby, “That looks delicious.”

I gathered my family members, eaters of live things, and headed to Masan.  Masan is on the edge of Koreatown, closer to downtown.  It’s not the best neighborhood and the only available parking is valet.  Once you walk in, you’re greeted by fish tanks, drunk Korean men with red faces, and empty green bottles once filled with soju.  The decor is sketchy, and if you’re not Korean you might want to call your Korean friend to come with.  The front of the restaurant was moderately packed for a Friday night, and the hostess escorted us to the back of the restaurant.  The smell of questionable fish and the sight of the cluttered kitchen were not appetizing but required to endure as we made our way to the back room.  These back rooms make me suspicious … I think I’ve seen too many mafia movies but my dukes were up, ready to swing.  We were the only ones in the back room.  Now if I wasn’t Korean, I’d think this is some Rosa Parks shit.  But I genuinely feel they didn’t have an available table for 5 in the front of the restaurant.

Masan actually serves a variety of live underwater deliciousness.  Live shrimp, live uni, live sea cucumbers.  We opted for the family plan including sashimi, sea cucumbers, steamed monk fish, spicy fish stew, and more.

The sea cucumbers.

This looks more disgusting than how it tastes.  Yes, it looks like black phlegm hacked from the lungs of a chronic cigarette smoker, but it’s really good.  It has this interesting crunchy texture that you can’t really place.  Maybe like crunching on the cartilage off a chicken bone.  But it was my favorite of the night.

The live octopus.

The live octopus was anti-climactic.  It was nothing like the movie Old Boy.  Sure the tentacles moved around and stuck to your inner cheeks, but I wanted a fight.  I wanted these bad boys to fight without mercy.  I should have thrown several of these tentacles on my face just to reenact the famous scene.

Suckers with suckers.

A clam???

I’m not sure what this was, I believe it’s some kind of clam.  Blister, do you remember?  They were chewy, nothing special obviously.  I can’t even remember what it is.

Sea squirts.

First of all, the name of these things is disgusting.  Sea squirt.  Barf.  The waitress gave us these squirts as “service.”  In Korean, “service” means on the house.  So when these squirts landed on our table, squirts from Korea mind  you, my dad’s eyeballs popped out of his head as he popped these bad boys into his mouth.  Now the eyeballs were in the back of his head.  Homeboy was in heaven.  These bad boys are disgusting.  They taste like dishwater.  No.  The water from your spa pedicure after the lady grates the cheese off the bottom of your feet.  That water.

Steamed monk fish.

Masan is known for their aggu jjim, steamed monk fish, and rightfully so.  My mom makes a killer aggu jjim, but Masan’s was good, too.  The fish was soft and tender and super spicy just like it should be.  The best aggu jjim I ever had was in New York.  During college, my aunt would order it from the local Korean restaurant and magically, aggu jjim appeared at her front door.  Hot, spicy, tender, delicious.  Damn, I used to kill some good aggu jjim up in New York.  I miss it.  Masan’s aggu jjim is not even competition for New York’s, but it was good.

Fish stew.

So remember that spa pedicure water?  Throw some red pepper flakes in it, and you’ll get this fish stew.  This is the worst fish stew.  It was way too watery and the fish and spices didn’t have enough time to percolate to get that fishy aroma.  That sounds gross.  But it was elementary.  So elementary.

Fresh sashimi.

The sashimi was not fresh and not worth the price.  El Ninja’s sashimi is way better.  He buys a live flounder from the market and slices and dices that bad boy and serves it fresh.  Really good and way better than Masan’s.  It wasn’t even sliced properly. Look at those jagged edges.  No good.

Here are some of the side dishes served.

 Squid salad with red pepper/vinegar sauce

 Mung bean jelly with soy sauce and scallions

 Deep fried salmon bones — crunchy and delicious

 Roasted garlic — mm mm good.  I recently found out that microwaved garlic is really good, too.

 Egg — a Korean staple

I expected more from Masan and was seriously disappointed.  The sea cucumber and aggu jjim were the only items I would recommend.  Two sarcastic slow claps.

Masan
2851 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA

Araki’s Japon

12 Apr

Work has been so hard these days.   Sometimes work can be fun, like the best work day of my life. What’s the best work day of my life? Well, Cellmate and I went to our local snack shop and asked if they had Smirnoff Ice so we could “Ice” Nibs.  To “ice” someone, you have to secretly present a Smirnoff Ice and the recipient has to get on bended knee and chug it.  If the recipient has an Ice and blocks you with his, the original Icer has to down 2 Smirnoff Ices.  Not only did our snack shop have Smirnoff Ice, they had Mango flavored Smirnoff.  Gross.  So I hid one of the Ices in Nibs’s tissue box and another in the spine of his legal reference guides.  I walked into Nibs’s office and pretended like I had to sneeze, and instantly he grabbed his tissue box for me and … ICE!  He chuggged it in his office right then and there.  NICE!

For the second Ice, I had the file clerk go into Nibs’s office and ask for his reference guides for updating.  Nibs grabbed the reference guide and felt the unusual heaviness of it and muttered, “Fuck.”  ICE!  He chugged his second Mango Ice of the day.  Now, we were hoping for 3 Ices but the third didn’t work out as planned.  We had Nibs’s boss hand him a file with an Ice in it, but Nibs refused to accept it because he knew an Ice was in there.  I think he owes us a Mango Ice.  What a sore loser.

But that’s considered an awesome work week, and last week was not awesome so Bubby said we should have sushi for dinner because I’ve been so busy with work and billed a record of hours for the month of March.  He always uses food to reward/manipulate me.  He suggested we go to Araki’s Japon.  A small sushi restaurant in a strip mall with neon lighting located next to a Coldstone Creamery in Foothill Ranch, California.  I’m sure I was in for an authentic Japanese treat.

The restaurant was full of white people and the only seats available were at the sushi bar.  Usually in LA, when an ethnic restaurant is full of white people, my natural instinct is to leave.  But this is South OC, all restaurants are filled with white people so we walked towards the sushi bar.  The menu is like a Japanese Cheesecake Factory menu, never ending.  Right when you think you know what you’re going to order, you look up and notice more writings on the wall.  Bubby loves to analyze the menu and asked, “Honey, what’s sylup?”

What a smartass.
My expectations of this restaurant were pretty low and since I was starving, I was slightly annoyed when they “ran out” of a lot of my favorites like fatty toro, aji, scallops, hama hama oysters.  So instead of fatty toro, we ordered chutoro, a medium fatty tuna.

Chef Araki instructed us to dip the ginger in his homemade soy sauce and brush the sauce on the fish.  Wow.  This is fantastic, even better than fatty tuna because sometimes fatty tuna could be a little too fatty.  But chutoro was a perfect amount of fattiness.  Amazing.  But fatty toro is pretty hard to fuck up, right?  It doesn’t mean this restaurant is good.

Yellowtail in yuzu sauce with cilantro and jalapenos.

These slices of yellowtail are so thick, like two inches thick, fresh and tender.  With the crunch of the cilantro and fresh jalapeno bathing in a yuzu sauce, this dish is ridic.

Wagyu beef seared sashimi.

Chef Araki prepared the thin rare slices of wagyu beef with thin slices of green onion and ginger.  He poured sizzling sesame seed oil and olive oil over it to lightly sear it.  Praise Him.  This is amazing, and better than the wagyu sashimi at Matsuhisa.  In fact, Chef Araki trained with Nobu for 9 years before opening his own restaurant.  The student has become the master.

Ikura with quail egg.

One of the quail eggs busted, but it was still creamy and cold.  I love cold, fresh ikura.  Both for me, Bubby hates ikura.

Pork belly “kakuni”.

Kakuni is thick cubes of pork belly simmered in dashi, soy sauce, mirin, sugar and sake. This broth is so light like a soup.  I expected it to require rice because it seemed salty, but it’s not.  The pork belly flaked off with my fork, and Bubby devoured the layer of fat.  I would throw in spoonfuls of rice and a fried egg on top, and mix the shit out of it.  Good comfort food.

Chef Araki: What are you doing?  Why are your eyes closed?
Me: I’m praying for your hands.  May they be strong and never get carpal tunnel.

Sushi.

Left to right: Albacore, Spotted Shad, Yellowtail

These were Bubby’s fish.  He ordered a lot more, but they never came out.  I asked him to use one word to describe each.
Albacore: Solid.
Spotted Shad: Interesting.
Yellowtail: Good.

We couldn’t stop calling each other a shad.  It just sounded funny.

I was waiting for my sweet babies, my sweet shrimp.  Here are my friends swimming in their fresh tank.

Chef Araki asked me if I wanted the live shrimp sashimi style or if I wanted it “his way.”  Uh, “his way” please.

Live sweet shrimp “his way.”

“His way” means there’s a sprinkle of yuzu, cilantro, chili sauce, sprinkled with sea salt.

The yuzu slightly cooked the top of the live shrimp and when I popped this baby in my mouth, a tear fell down my cheek.  I stood up and slow clapped.  He thought I was crazy but this was it.  This is the dish that pushed this restaurant from 4 clap-territory to 5.  This was it.  And the heads were lightly fried that every bite was crunchy and delicate like tempura.  Dissolved in my mouth unlike many fried shrimp heads.

BEST LIVE SHRIMP I HAVE EVER HAD!

Salmon Kami Shabu in Miso Butter.

Chef Araki:  Dip the salmon in the miso butter for 10 seconds for the perfect medium rare.

The perfect medium rare.

Holy butter.  If you love butter like Paula Deen and I do, miso butter is like butter on Asian steroids.  It’s not too oily but still coats that perfect buttery flavor all over the salmon.  This was so fantastic that we had to share with our neighbor at the sushi bar.  She was so grateful.  Good food should always be shared and I hope one day someone else will pay it forward to me and let me eat their food.  One day.  But we weren’t done.  Chef Araki dropped sweet white rice into our miso butter.

Haaaaallelujah!  Halleluhah! Halleeelujah!  Are you fucking kidding me?!!!!!  This is the ultimate comfort food in a paper coffee filter bowl.   It’s warm, subtle, buttery, savory and rich.  Chef Araki said he was going to take it off the menu because summer is approaching and I insisted he keep it on his dinner menu.  You’re welcome, everyone.

I told Chef Araki that I was giving him a perfect rating on my blog because it was obvious I was into him.  Little does he know that like 3 people read my blog and 2 of the 3 are vegetarians, but he gave us free desserts.

Creme brûlée in three ways.

Left to right: Yuzu, green tea, ginger

The creme brûlée was ok.  Nothing special.  But the cooked pear in chocolate sauce and ice cream was amazing.

As Bubby rolled me out of this place, I couldn’t believe I found such a gem in Foothill Ranch.  Where did this man come from? Why is he in Foothill Ranch?  Is he lost? Why is his food so amazing?  Why am I in love with him?  Even days later, I kept thinking about his food, his hands, his well-being.  Is he thinking of me?  I’m obsessed with him, his hands, and his food.  Urasawa is still one of my favorite restaurants in LA, but Araki has caught me by surprise.

Araki’s Japon
26612 Town Center Dr, Suite E
Foothill Ranch, CA

The Boiling Crab

5 Apr

Blister turned 33!  Her lucky number is 3! Her birthday is 3-30!  Do I think there is such a thing as a lucky number?? Hell no, but I’ll entertain the girl.  She’s convinced it’s lucky.  After all, it is her birthday.  And where did the birthday nugget want to go for her lucky birthday?  The new Boiling Crab in K-town.  No more trips to Garden Grove or Alhambra, there’s one in the heart of dirty old K-town.

For a table of 6, we ordered a lot of food.  And while ordering, I batted my eyelashes a few extra times.

Blister: Why are you flirting with the waiter?
Bubby: She wants something for free.
Blister: Huh?
Bubby: The other day I was on the phone with her and she was flirting with the valet guy.
Me: I got valet parking for free.
Bubby: It was $2.
Me: Free for me.  *Raising eyebrows up and down.
Bubby:  She’s flirting because she probably wants some extra sausage or corn in her bag.
Me: Sho’ do.

The oysters.

These oysters were fresh, super creamy, and lacked the oceany taste I despise.  Refreshing and chilled perfectly.  Blister ate 3/4 of them because it was her birthday.  There was a lot of “I’ll take the biggest crab… It’s my birthday” and “I’ll eat all the oysters… It’s my birthday.”

We asked for limes, but they had none.  Instead they poured a bucket of lemons on our table.  With lemons, we made lemon sauce with the salt and pepper.  It’s definitely better with lime, but I heard limes are extremely expensive right now.

Fried catfish.

Bubby ordered the fried catfish because he doesn’t think it’s worth the work to wrestle with crawdads and crabs.  He’s a simple and lazy eater.  Did the fried catfish come with bite marks?  My mom took a nibble and threw it back in the basket when she realized I had to take a picture for my “buh-log” which means blog in Korean.

Gumbo.

This gumbo is all kinds of right.  Fresh cut okra and seafood.  The texture was thick and hot.  Nice blend of spices.  Well done, sir.

Crawdads.

We ordered 2 pounds of the whole sha-bang/XXX spicy and 4 pounds of the whole sha-bang/medium spicy.  The whole sha-bang is the best seasoning because it includes all of the seasonings, such as rajun cajun, lemon pepper, and garlic butter.  But the XXX is a million times more spicy than medium that you can’t enjoy the seasoning because it’s too damn spicy.  Stick with medium, XXX is not worth it.  Well, in this case it’s not worth it.  Usually XXX means you’re in store for a good time.  Waddup.

Work.

The meat in the claws was just as big as the tail.

I usually suck on them crawdad heads, but these were filled with oil instead of head juice.  Man, this post cannot be written without screaming “THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID” repeatedly.

The prize.  I’m really good at cracking these babies open.  Been eatin’ them all me life.

The victims.

The crabs.  King and Dungeness.

The king crab legs were juicier than the dungeness.  Next time, I’m ordering the king and snow crab legs.  They are most meaty.  Also, I’d like to take note and never forget the image of my mom using the crab claw to scratch her forehead because her fingers were too dirty.  Hilarious.

The snausage.

Was it free? No.  In fact, they forgot the sausage and provided it later.  Flirted for nothing.  But the sausage was good, and had a crispy casing that snapped and the sausage had bits of rice in it.  Blister kept shouting, “There’s rice in it!!!”

This was definitely a birthday feast.  An expensive one, too.

Me:  I think I paid double gratuity.  They already added the 20% and I added another 20%.
Bubby: So basically you flirted and overpaid.
Me:  Dammit!!!!

Moral of the story, don’t flirt unless you’re pretty certain you’re gonna get some free sausages.  The crawdads in this Houston bel-air strip mall is still my favorite of all time, but Boiling Crab is not too shabby.

Boiling Crab
3377 Wilshire Blvd. #115
Los Angeles, CA