By Rachel Tan
They are oblong parcels of delicious ingredients. Some might say, an upscale Hot Pocket. The croquette is both deep-fried and delicious; these Spanish delicacies are omnipresent in the slew of tapas restaurants opening up around Singapore. But like most classic food items, some stand out from the rest.
Meet the jamón croquette at Catalunya, a contemporary Spanish restaurant helmed by el Bulli and Drolma-trained chefs. Housed in a glass pavilion overlooking the waterfront, consider it for a night out in a space large enough to be dramatic and intimate enough to be romantic. Read More
If you haven’t noticed by now, after more than a year’s worth of blog posts and hundreds of stories on ABC 7, I’ve got a thing for Korean food. Not just the thinly-sliced, char-grilled kalbi and smoke palaces on Western Ave. in Chicago and in Downtown L.A.; not just in the sea of vibrant, crunchy panchan fields of cabbage, zucchini and daikon radish on Lawrence Ave. and in NYC’s K-Town on 32nd Street, but in the mom-and-pop honesty of a simple bowl of ginseng and cornish game hen soup, or more precisely, like the fantastically delicious home-cooking I experienced last night on a darkened street beneath the Granville Red Line stop, down the block from an Ann Sather and next door to a dumpy looking hot dog joint that also sells Indian food.
Here’s a brief report I filed from Miami’s “Little Havana” on one of the city’s beloved sandwiches, the Cubano:
By Rachel Tan
Nothing screams brunch and weekends like syrup, carbs and maple bacon. But just for once, take a pass on the omelets at Lou Mitchell’s or a short stack at The Original Pancake House, and let Takashi Yagihashi cook for you. The Chef/Owner of the Slurping Turtle is sharing a bit of his heritage, with a weekend do-it-yourself Bento Brunch.
A black and red lacquer box is divided into three, equal compartments, all contributing to a balanced meal from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. One compartment is for a choice of protein, like thinly-sliced short ribs or sashimi. The middle compartment usually houses sweets and pickled sides, and the last features a single serving of perfectly-cooked Japanese rice. Portions are generous and will not leave you craving dessert.
The sashimi slices are cleanly cut and an even thickness. With a selection of fresh salmon, tuna, whitefish and octopus, the meal is infused with color and flavor – none of that fishy aftertaste. Sweet potato fries moonlighting as glazed tempura sticks sprinkled with sesame seeds are a delectable finish. A hard shell adds a complementary crunch to the Japanese sweet potato’s denser, chalkier texture. A couple of slices of tamago – sweet Japanese omelets – are delicately made and well-portioned.
All-American sweet, doughy and dense brunch classics are hard to deny, but Slurping Turtle offers an equally tasty Japanese alternative. Textures may differ, but the flavors are truly one-of-a-kind, especially on a lazy weekend morning.
116 W. Hubbard St.
Editor’s Note: this is our final post for 2012…see you back here in January. Happy New Year!
Nearly every culture has its go-to winter comfort soup. The “Jewish penicillin” is matzo ball soup; Mexicans have their hominy-and-pork-jammed pozole, while the Poles are usually seen huddled over mammoth bowls of borscht this time of year. In the Vietnamese community, the beefy noodle soup known as pho (pronounced “fuh”) is ubiquitous in Chicago, especially along Argyle Street. I’ve had good pho as far away as Glendale Heights and Glen Ellyn, but for sheer convenience, it’s hard to beat a stroll along Argyle, where several good options beckon. Read More
For our final BotW for 2012 (can’t believe we started this feature almost a year ago), The Hopleaf’s Michael Roper is thinking seasonal, harvest ales. These are beers that are ready to drink. Right now. So go grab one, and tell a friend to join you for a taste of the season, as in fresh hops. Cheers to a happy new year.