Panda King in New Orleans (Dim Sum)

red bean paste inside a sesame seed rice ball

Panda King
925 Behrman Hwy
Gretna, LA

This is the only dim sum restaurant in the area, they serve dim sum on the weekends from 10:30 AM to 2 PM. It is adjacent to a buffet restaurant with the exact same name so don’t make the same mistake as me and wait for your friends for a dim sum lunch at the buffet side…….Cuz you’ll be waiting for a while. So you probably think that I’ll be generous in my review given that this is the only option for dim sum in the area but they actually have a wide range of selections and they’re all pretty decent. Some of the rice noodle dishes are on the bland side, but the rest of the dishes are solid. Definitely worth the drive over to West Bank (don’t forget a $1 for the toll on the way back!)

clams in brown sauce

Hong Kong egg rolls

crabmeat ball

shrimp shumai

shrimp in long rice noodle

shrimp ball

beef chow fun bite size

pork shumai

pork dumpling

red bean paste inside a sesame seed rice ball

Panda King on Urbanspoon

The Gourmet Dumpling House in Boston, MA

beef chow fun

The Gourmet Dumpling House
52 Beach St
Boston, MA

the front

We could not find parking in chinatown (surprise, surprise) and so I parked in the main parking lot in Chinatown. As I waited in line to pay and hand in my keys, I’m pretty sure I saw a drug deal go down between the parking attendant and a hooded figure in front of me. I told Joe what happened and he flipped out and insisted on opening the trunk so that he could take his work bag inside the restaurant with us…..

ambiance

Luckily we got there early (11:30) and the place wasn’t that crowded.  We barely had time to look over the menu before the waiter came by to take our order. we already knew two of our items, so we randomly picked the second two items. I figured with almost 500 reviews on yelp with an average of 4 out of 5 stars, anything we order would be good. right?

beef chow fun

The beef chow fun came out first. This is by far my favorite dish of all dishes that came out of china (Joe says this is not true, that this is actually an americanized version but why ruin my skewed vision). This was soooooooooo good. Not too much soy sauce so that the other flavors could come out.

stinky tofu

the stinky tofu came out at the same time as the beef chow fun, and wow did it stink. It was such a rancid smell, and soooo overwhelming. Think of a rotten egg and multiply that by infinity and you’ll get to about a fraction of what I was dealing with here.  Every time I ducked my head to eat my food, the smell made my head snap back up. I ate one but the smell was too much for me even from inside my mouth. I told Joe he was on his own for finishing this off since this was one of his last minute orders. It almost ruined my authentic beef chow fun! (joe has told me to stop calling it that)

special soy sauce for soup dumplings

soup dumplings

The soup dumplings came out next (that was fast! it said it needs at least 15 minutes but I guess since we were the only ones that ordered it –that’s right! I scope out other tables’ dishes when I’m eating out at restaurants). Joe said I don’t know how to eat a soup dumpling. My first dumpling broke as I picked it up with a chopstick and all the soup and other filling came out. Joe told me to use a spoon, so my next one I picked it up with the spoon and then took a bite, then I dipped it into the soy sauce and again all my filling fell out………Grrrrrrrr. But still good. I gotta be honest tho, looking at the filling come out, I was shocked at the appearance. NO BUENO. the first thought I had when it filled out, after “oh crap! it came out!” was that is supposed to go into my GI tract? the oil and soup and filling floating around in a gelatinous goop? For the next few ones, I try to to recall what I saw and just focus on the yummy taste. I guess that’s why some people eat these things whole in one bite.

salt and pepper chicken

Surprisingly, the fried chicken was the last thing to come out. We were so stuffed though that we each ate one for taste and then got the rest to go. The fried chicken was delicious! The salt and pepper dry rub was soooooooo perfect for this dish. I can see why this place has such rave reviews, with delicious food at an affordable price. Just getting to Chinatown is an adventure in and of itself, might as well enjoy yummy food while you’re at it.

Gourmet Dumpling House on Urbanspoon

San Dong Noodle House in Houston, TX

San Dong Noodle House
9938 Bellaire Blvd.
Houston, TX

the front

this staple in Chinatown is known for their home-made dishes. the noodle is made by hand. you could really appreciate the texture with each bite.

chinese jajangmyun

this dish was pretty good with the ground pork in a brown sauce. it was made awesome by the hot sauce that could be found on each table.

pan fried pork dumplings

the pork dumplings were pretty good. i was wondering why they were open on each end and was told it was so that the fillings could cook. i wonder how the fillings stay inside though with 2 openings like that. the skin was store bought but the filling was delicious.
San Dong Noodle House on Urbanspoon

The Wandering Buddha in New Orleans, LA

The Wandering Buddha
2239 Saint Claude Ave
New Orleans, LA

ambiance

The Wandering Buddha is located behind the Hi Ho bar, so walk around to the back of the bar and you’ll see three tables set up from 5 PM to midnight. My friend had heard about this new Korean vegan restaurant and since we’re both Korean (& raised in carnivorous families), we wanted to check this out. The server was very friendly and knowledgeable about Korean food (I was thoroughly impressed with his pronounciation).

lettuce wraps

The lettuce wraps had 2 lettuce wraps filled with rice, marinated tofu, zucchini, onions and almonds.  And it was topped with a spicy pepper sauce (gochujang). This was a very refreshing dish (the crisp lettuce and crunchy almonds). I liked it a lot; the almonds added an extra crunch to it.

fried dumplings

The fried dumplings are hand made (well not the skin, but the filling is).  It is filled with tofu and glass noodles (jap chae). These were super hot when they came out; caution when biting into these things! I especially liked the dipping sauce with sesame seeds.

scallion pancake

The scallion pancake is a crispy wheat and rice pancake with scallions prepared in the Chinese fashion (the scallions were cut into small circles versus the long strands that Koreans like). These were quite tasty (the batter) but different than what I am used to. Still, I love that dipping sauce!

cold buckwheat noodles

This was a very different approach compared to the bibim nengmyun that I am accustomed to.  This dish is traditionally made with hot pepper sauce (gochujang) but this dish came out with a somewhat sweeter sauce and lots of veggies. The arrangement with all of the veggies reminds me of bibimbap.It was so refreshing to eat something cold on such a hot day. While this restaurant is a departure from traditional korean food, it is a great spin for vegetarians.

The Wandering Buddha (Hi-Ho Lounge) on Urbanspoon