NYCPeace in the Middle East (Village). Curbed reports that Plump Dumpling has changed their logo, it's no longer the blatant Dumpling Man ripoff it was before. Great, but what I really want to know is if Plump Dumpling's offerings are going to be any better than Dumpling Man's, or if the status quo (of having to trek to Mandoo in the West Village if I want good dumplings) will be maintained.
Market Manila. "A food weblog that talks about ingredients, food, food stuffs, recipes, restaurants and markets here in the Philippines and around the globe." Well-written and easy on the eyes, I've only just discovered this site but it's now easily my favorite Filipino food blog. The writer is currently visiting New York and discussing food here, but going through the archives really makes me miss Manila.
Just how nasty does this fruit smell? So bad that airplanes will not let you travel with it in your luggage, hotels have signs saying please do not bring it back to your room, and in Singapore it's actually illegal to bring it onto public transportation. And yet devotees like my own mother swear that once you've gotten a taste of the incomparable durian creaminess, you immediately stop noticing the odor. I can't imagine that ever happening to me, but if you consider yourself culinarily adventurous then by all means get yourself to the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory and try the durian ice cream out.
(I was there the other day and couldn't work up the nerve to try it, taking it as a bad sign that the durian wasn't stored up front along with the other flavors. But maybe I will be stronger next time.)
Corinne Trang, "the Julia Child of Asian cuisine", has an exemplary site: it's highly informative and very elegant, so not only is it easy to find what you're looking for but you also get a sense of what she's about. I still think almost any web presence is better than none at all, no matter what field you're in, but if you're going to do it then you might as well do it right, like Trang has done.
NYCDumpling Imposter. I'm not the biggest fan of Dumpling Man on St Mark's (their dough is so thick and heavy that you fill up on it instead of the meats, which are not spectacular to begin with) but whoa, Plump Dumpling's completely ripoff of the excellent DM branding is way lame.
I grew up with chopsticks so I've never had this problem, but if you don't know how to use them and would like to learn (and you really should! food tastes better and you don't look like a shmuck!), you might want to check out Fun Chop, the chopstick helper.
NYTimes: Much better — astoundingly good, in fact — are what the menu calls fried clams ($5.25). They aren't really fried, by the way, but cooked quickly in their shells and served with crisp slivers of aromatic garlic, nuggets of minced pork and cilantro.
As a general rule, an Asian restaurant devoid of Asian customers indicates one of two things: the restaurant serves mediocre Asian food, catering to an unadventurous palate; or the restaurant has received rave reviews and is considered a safe bet. Both thoughts crossed my mind when we entered Chanoodle and I realized I was the most Asian customer present. Fortunately, we found the reviews to be accurate and enjoyed a tasty and affordable meal. We'll have to return another time to check out the $1.50 breakfast.
Two starters from a dinner at Public. Front: Squid & seafood ceviche with young coconut, Thai herbs, crispy shallots and spicy clear coconut water. Background: Grilled scallops with sweet chili sauce, creme fraiche & green plantain crisps.
William Grimes' description of Public's foie gras is spot on:
It's daubed with ginger-lemon cream, then placed on a cookie-shaped "scone" flavored with cardamom and coffee. There are things to like about this dish — its daring, for one. The scone, spicy and aromatic, is wonderful, and the lemon-ginger cream has a thrilling zing to it. Put it all together, and it makes a mess. The scone is too sweet to let the ginger-lemon combination do its main job, which is to cut the fatty richness of the foie gras. This may be the world's first meat dessert.
Among New York City foodies, it is no secret that there are no secrets. A good thing, too --- a kept secret is more likely to become a closed restaurant or vanished food cart. However there are some hard to find spots, places that you are less likely to stumble across by accident. Kuma Inn is just such a place.