This post is for the Vietnamese expats in particular and anyone who thinks of the avocado as a fruit (to be eaten as a fruit, not a vegetable). In America, people tend to think of avocado in guacamole terms or as a meat substitute in sandwiches. If you think avocado for dessert is weird, shall we talk about your pumpkin pie? Ever since the day I saw the option of “avocado smoothie” at Continue reading One shot: Avocado smoothie
Above is our table at 10 a.m. (after we have cleared the first few dishes). To your right is Hong Kong Lounge at 9:31 a.m., exactly 1 minute after the doors opened. Every seat was filled. When we arrived at Hong Kong Lounge at 9:10, 20 minutes before the restaurant opens, a line had already formed. While we were eating, the line formed again outside and kids were pressing their face against the frosted [...]
Continue reading Hong Kong Lounge – it’s never too early for dimsum and tea
In Europe the royalty and the aristocracy used to eat a lot better than the peasants – they weren’t eating the same things at all. It was either partridge or porridge, and each class stuck to its own food. But when Queen Elizabeth came here and President Eisenhower bought her a hot dog I’m sure he felt confident that she couldn’t have had delivered to Buckingham Palace a better hot dog than that one he bought [...]
Continue reading Andy Warhol, kokeshi dolls, and oden
Today. Big glistening birds. Crimson cranberry sauce. Mashed sweet potato with a crusty marshmallow top. Green bean casseroles. Gravies. The all-American classic holiday dinner table that every grocery store has a picture of on their website. Once upon a time I was enticed by such beauty, much like how I engulfed a chunk of ham the first time I saw real ham after years of seeing ham in old American cartoons (Tom and Jerry I think?). [...]
Continue reading Duck for Thanksgiving! (Stealing ideas from Double Duck Dinner at Bay Wolf)
After four months at Teance on 4th Street and one morning at Imperial Tea Court on Shattuck, the stupid demanding tea snob novice in me revealed herself. I’m far from being the perfect judge on what constitutes a good tea house, but I know the basics. With that, I wouldn’t recommend Imperial to anyone who seriously wants to learn about tea. Click on the image if you want to know my reasons. [...]
Continue reading Time for tea in Berkeley: Imperial or Teance?
And eat an amazing cream puff. (Cream puffs >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Cupcakes) Click to see my post on the Spring Harvest Tea Party at Teance tonight. We drank some eye-opening teas, literally and figuratively.
The best (known) green tea of China. The cream of the cream of the crop. I feel sophisticated just drinking it. Paired with a tangerine bee pollen truffle and I almost hear little cherubim playing the lyre. You can read the whole story in my journal Tea & Mai. I’m off to dance in my head.
The third pairing of mochi and Japanese green tea. Perfect! Yes, finally a mochi that goes perfectly with sencha. Yomogi (Japanese mugwort), julienned into tiny strings and mixed with the mochi dough, gives the mochi a clean, refreshing taste, which reminds me of the tip of a Vietnamese bánh ít or a bánh ít gai (*). However, what struck me was the filling: red bean and sweet [...]
Continue reading Sencha and yomogi mochi
Another pairing of Japanese tea and Japanese snack. A bowl of matcha is supposed to suffice your daily vegetable need because you’re actually consuming the leaves themselves, in powder form. Matcha is served in a bowl. Mix water (205 F) with the matcha powder using a whisk, whose look reminds me of a yard broom in Vietnam, and there is no steeping time to watch out for, which I like. The whisk makes the tea foam [...]
Continue reading Matcha and kabocha mochi
Sencha in yunomi, a typical Japanese thick, tall teacup, whose name I’ve yet to find out, accompanied by a matcha mochi, whose fillings include: satsuma sweet potato, red bean paste, orange juice and walnuts. (Thanks Masaaki for telling me the name of the cup in Japanese.) The mochi, handmade and delivered by a mochi lady every week to Teance, is refreshing both in look and in taste. The green tea flavored chewy coat [...]
Continue reading Sencha and Mochi