Author Archives: David Dettmann

About David Dettmann

Food obsessed and frequently nostalgic.

Breakfast tsuivan submerged in hot milk tea

“Smells like Mongolian spirit, man!” This is my favorite line from Nargie’s Mongolian Cuisine‘s tsuivan episode (see link below). I now realize this was most likely a reference to Nirvana’s hit single as Nargie is clearly a big fan, but … Continue reading

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The East Falls Farmers’ Market

Since the lock down, the East Falls Farmers’ Market (4100 Ridge Ave) has become my primary source for fresh produce, fruit, meats, yogurt, cheese, wine, beer, etc. My wife and I still cook primarily Thai and East Asia inspired foods on a daily basis, but we have largely adapted to what is available at the market. Continue reading

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Delicious grains: millets of China, Mongolia, and Central Asia

The millets of China, Mongolia, and Central Asia are hearty crops that can be sustained in very arid climates. For tens of thousands of years they have served as important staple crops for many of those region’s food cultures (especially … Continue reading

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Central Asia-focused market in NE Philadelphia

I was thrilled to learn about a new market that opened up in NE Philly this past year–a market that caters to Central Asian tastes! It is called Vatan Market and it is located at 11726A Bustleton Ave, just across … Continue reading

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Fragrant and crispy peppers, for snacking on

In recent years an interesting snack seems to be trending all around China: fried “fragrant and crispy” peppers (香脆椒, aka 香辣酥), sometimes translated into English as “fried chile crisp”, or “magic chili”. I don’t recall seeing these in the 90s … Continue reading

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Dough covered meals of the Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and Mongols

Greetings after a long hiatus! Even though I haven’t been reporting here as much as I’d have liked, since my last post I have been continuing on my journey through culinary traditions on the frontiers of Turkic, Mongolian, and Tibetan … Continue reading

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Gundruk: an essential food staple and flavor in Nepali cooking

Over the past several months I have been slowly exploring Nepali food and cooking with rare items from our local supplier of foodstuffs from Nepal, Friendly Market on S. 7th St. in South Philly (see here for my 2014 introduction … Continue reading

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Some reflections on a recent food trip to Xinjiang, China

Great laghman (لەغمەن) is well worth obsessing over. Hand-pulled and perfectly chewy wheat noodles are boiled, drained, and then topped with a hot stir fry of fatty mutton, garlic, tomato, and peppers with any seasonal vegetables. Check out my 2015 … Continue reading

Posted in - Featured Food Discoveries, - Guides, Central Asia/Uyghur food, Chinese food | 1 Comment

Garlic scapes, fried as a vegetable

  We are deep into the season of garlic scapes. Fortunately for those of us in Philly, we are able to find these strong-flavored beauties with fair regularity through springtime in Chinatown and even at area farmer’s markets. These are … Continue reading

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Savory Uyghur flatbread at the base of a stew

Travelers to Uyghur cultural zones of Xinjiang will be familiar with the Uyghur staple flatbread (aka nan) and its many uses at the table. It is served alongside tea, dried fruits and nuts for breakfast and afternoon tea. At kawap … Continue reading

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