Monthly Archives: July 2014

Markets of South Philly’s 7th Street

Among Philadelphia’s many hidden charms are its neighborhoods.  Some of those neighborhoods can transport you to other lands, complete with markets, restaurants, religious temples, and even street food–from sources that are commonplace in other countries.  Though long gone for France, … Continue reading

Posted in - Featured Food Discoveries, - Featured Markets, Cambodian food, Myanmar/Burmese food, Nepali food, Thai/Lao food | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Uyghur flatbreads, meat pies, and the tonur oven

I love looking at recipes and cookbooks–especially the kind that explain the unusual elements you are trying to replicate.  There are some gems out there for US cookbooks nowadays, with authors that do go through great lengths to explain culture … Continue reading

Posted in - Unique food traditions, Central Asia/Uyghur food | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Tofu threads, a nice cold side dish

Back in 2010 I enjoyed a northeastern-style buckwheat noodle restaurant in Huhhot, Inner Mongolia.  On the table were several cold plate dishes to eat together with the noodles, among them was a small dish of tofu threads or tofu “silk”.  … Continue reading

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Holy basil, my long lost love

Finding holy basil in the states is often pretty hit-or-miss.  In Wisconsin we could occasionally find this herb in local Vietnamese, Hmong, or Thai markets in the summertime.  These days in Philadelphia, I am seeing it around at Cambodian markets … Continue reading

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“Big plate chicken” spice pack from Urumchi

I’m not big on non-perishables that are loaded with chemicals and preservatives.  I really appreciate fresh ingredients and the time taken to produce a beautiful stew.  That said, I couldn’t resist this very unusual find today at a local market … Continue reading

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Purslane, fried as vegetable

I came across this vegetable recently in a local store.  It is known as purslane in English, machixian (馬齒莧) in Mandarin, and semiz otu in Turkish—I provide these names as I know of its culinary use in China and Turkey … Continue reading

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Long peppers found

I have been looking for this spice for quite some time.  Online references imply that it should be easily found at South Asian markets.  I finally ended up finding it at a local North Philly Cambodian market. This spice is … Continue reading

Posted in - Featured Food Discoveries, Cambodian food, Central Asia/Uyghur food, Thai/Lao food | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Yellow figs from Xinjiang and Turkey

I was surprised to come across yellow figs at a local market several weeks ago.  I was used to having a double-take every time I saw dried Chinese chestnuts (they look quite similar), but alas we really do now have … Continue reading

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Lanzhou pulled noodles and “secret” ingredients

For those who have experienced it, a trip to a hand-pulled noodle (lamian 拉面 in Mandarin) shop is a culinary highlight of China.  Often these shops are named after their product: “beef noodles”(牛肉面), or “Lanzhou pulled noodles” (兰州拉面). In China, … Continue reading

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