Pork Butt, Bom chicka wow wow

Pork Butt, Bom chicka wow wow

food slideshow - be careful, some pics maybe xxx rated!

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Lost Email Files

So, as others can attest to, I have a very old shitty falling apart camera. It's a Kodak from the year we got married... so the picture quality is good, but it takes about 1.5 seconds for the picture to snap after you push the button. So anyhoo, it's big and bulky and I don't carry it around everywhere. So sometimes I have to rely on my crappy cellphone camera. And it costs money to email the pictures to myself. Anyway, I always forget to download these pictures. So intermittently some of the next few blogs will be from the cellphone archives. I emphasize how my cellphone takes very low quality photos.

Here's food from Taste of Polynesia. 6937 Federal Blvd in Lemon Grove.

We go to the Walmart and Target nearby, so this is right off the 94. I've seen it for a while, so one day we finally went in. Yeah, we do shop at Walmart and Target. No, I'm not embarassed. A lot of people go to those stores! If I were rich enough to buy all hemp clothing and hippie soap, I'd probably still go to Walmart and Target.

Anyhoo, let's get back to the food blog!

Turkey tail and corned beef and cabbage. Yeah, really, at a Polynesian place. It was good though! The portions didn't look too big in the section container, but they were big enough in the stomach.

So...lamb ribs and that stuff...kelaguen? Someone please correct me if I'm wrong. Not very familiar with this food...yeah, I know this is a food blog, but it's not like a factual type of food blog, it's my view of stuff and stuff....man.

So what else can I dig up?

Oh... here's some terrible pictures that I shouldn't even post. But since it costs like .50 to email them, I might as well post them anyway to exhibit how shitty my cellphone camera can be without lighting.

So this is gross Thai food from Hillcrest. I won't even bother to tell you from what restaurant. These horrible places are open late on University Avenue, and people go to them because they are open. If someone would give me money, I would open a place with palatable food, open late. But these Thai places... I can't believe that is what thai food tastes like in any region of Thailand...I don't know who's in the kitchen, but surely these are not homeland recipes? But it's not even what I would think of americanized Thai - just... grossized.

Let's end on a nicer note, shall we? Here is a cold salad from...House of Orchid. I don't know the name. Again...uninformed blogger here! But the lady explained to me that it was usually a banchan dish that they turned into a bigger dish because people liked it. She kept saying pine cone...but there were no pine nuts or anything resembling that...once again, cultural communication breakdown. But anyway, I liked the salad. Service was very slow...but I gotta say, the sushi guy was very particular and the chirashi looked beautiful.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

San Fran part 5

So, Tuesday night, we decided to blow more money. We went to Wine Steals, then we went to Bite. This place has been off my radar since a few months after it opened, but there we were. We sat outside on the patio. So did almost everyone else that went there to eat.

So we had a cute little stylish boppy gay waiter. He pretty much addressed everything he said to the Food Pimp. Didn't really make eye contact with me. That is disconcerting. I'm not sure why. I guess because I expect a homosexual to think of gender as being equal? But, maybe he just thought the FP was cute and he'd rather look at him than me. He does have that bit of fem in him that the guys go crazy for....

This was our amuse bouche. I haven't been to a restaurant in a looooonnng time that served those. Those is fo fancy places we cain't ford! So this was like a smoked salmon spread or something equally exciting.

Okay. I'm going to be honest. This was not good. Squid steak skewers. They were tough, not chewy. Give me a lightly grilled squid steak anytime. All that panko and garnish...too much. And I think it really needed the lemon too.

Duck liver pate. Now this was some good shit! It had like dried cherries and pistachios in it, with traditional condiments - caperberries, and capers AND pickles! I liked that. I love me some pickled shit! I probably might even like "pickled shit"!

This was the lamb meatballs with polenta, arugula and tomato sauce. I love polenta. It's one of my favorite starches in the world, next to rice, potatoes and pasta.... in fact, there is polenta and rice in the fridge right now. So I think it was good. I really don't remember how we liked the meatballs. I want to say they were a little tough, but I don't remember so I'm not going to speculatively (is that a word?) badmouth something I don't remember. I do remember digging the polenta, arugula and tomato sauce combo though. Sad that I don't remember the star of the show. The meatballs are like Winona Ryder in Girl Interrupted. Poor Winona.

Sweetbreads with onion jam and pancetta. So the pancetta was supposed to be wrapped around it, but it kinda wasn't, and it wasn't as crispy as it could have been. But the sweetbreads were...sweet. Not in the literal sense. But they were nice and creamy and savory and pleasant in the mouth. They were nicely cooked. All that glaze all over the plate was kinda unnecessary though.

creme brulee. Pretty. Kinda like a dumb blond chick. Nice to look at,but when you crack it open not as attractive, not all there. It was a little runny. And the problem with creme brulee is that when you have had that perfect one, it's hard to accept anything less after that. And I know I've made countless subpar creme brulees, but it isn't as easy as it seems to make. But there you have it... Bite, it didn't by any means completely bite, but I'm not biting.

God, can you tell I'm PMSing?

Monday, November 9, 2009

San Fran part 4

So, we technically were back in SD on Tuesday, but we were still on that vacation frame of mind. So we got up and had lunch. We wanted to try somewhere new, so we went to Salazars Taco Shop. I had previously only eaten there by myself when the Food Pimp was out of town.

So we went. I had high hopes. Okay, maybe I just had decent hopes. Something good please. Or interesting?

Interesting...certainly. This was lentil soup. Yeah, lentil soup. I don't know why it looked like that. It only tasted half as bad as it looked though. Not saying much.

Carne con chili colorado. Okay, so it was like beef chopped up and like sauteed in the "chili colorado" sauce. It was... kinda gross. Like something you'd make when you are really broke and you throw together stuff you have to get rid of. But wait... there's more.

Okay... 2 tamales smothered with chili beans, cheese and rice. It was like canned chili... not like mexican chili beans. Gross, gross and gross. I ate some of it cause I gotta eat...but I felt sick the more I ate. So... maybe we'll go sometime and just try some margaritas and maybe a very simple... taco or something safe? I just want to find something good there, because I like the building, and the interior. It's such a cool old space!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

San Fran Part 3

So, we drove around the city a bit on the way out. Here's some more random photos.

Then we headed back south. We stopped at one point along the way and got some beef jerky. Whenever the Food Pimp is on a road trip, he has to eat beef jerky. That's just his thing. For me, I must always have a bottle of water and at least one other drink in the car at all time - or I get anxious. Although, this time, we thought ahead because we really had to watch our money, so we brought like 2 gallons of water and 2 gallons of gatorade and a 2 liter of diet coke and a cooler - so I was pretty secure with my beverage situation.

Here's the packaging.

Here's the product. I believe we both like the stuff in the smaller bag better (I almost wrote "smaller package" but that sounded funny to me, and it's 6:31 am, too early to be cracking dirty jokes. Anyhoo, we both like the dryer beef jerky. I think it's much more... pleasurable in the mouth (damnit - there I go again).

Moving forward. We drove back through LA. Here's some smoke pictures

So we don't really know our way around LA too well, but we exited and drove around to find somewhere to eat for dinner. Guess where we ended up? Little Tokyo. So we parked and went menu reading. We looked at a couple places, but they just weren't what we wanted. The FP was on the phone on a business call, kinda just following me. Then I spotted a place across the street - exactly what I wanted. Izakaya Haru Ulala. So I ushered the FP across the street. He didn't know why, but he followed.

So, it's relatively small. It's got a long curved sushi/bar area and then a few tables. The sushi bar and grill is very open, and they have a pretty display area with seafood and stuff. And then the menu - it's written in crayon. The two Japanese women that were serving were so... Japanese. Teeny, skinny skinny supermodel skinny chicks. One was hanging out at the bar talking to one customer a lot. I seem to recall him buying a pitcher and sharing it with her. So I made up a story about how he was in love with her and went in there every night to talk to her. She obviously has a boyfriend, but she doesn't discourage, cause a loyal customer is like money in the bank. Do other people make up backstories for strangers in restaurants?

Anyhoo, we were pretty hungry for a good meal.

We got pickles! I love pickles. And I know you can get the pickles in all varieties vacuum packed at Mitsuwa, but it was fun to get them at a restaurant.

Spicy roll and salmon nigiri. Both fresh tasting and yummy.

BBQ shortrib? Nice and tender and... small. But that's how portions are supposed to be at an izakaya place, right?

Anyway, that concludes Part 3 of our odyssey. More to come.

Ohhhhhhhh....hamachi kama. They didn't have the large, so this was the medium, which to me was small. It was good though. It's the simple things in life. All you need is a yellowtail collar with the skin all browned and crisp and the meat in the collar all tender and succulent. Succulent. I can't think of a more appropriate word to describe it. Now, I'm going to delve in to racial stereotyping, but that's allowed because I'm not white - right? Anyhoo, mexican cooks that I've observed tend to cook and often overcook meat and fish. They have a lot of braised and roasted meats, and deep fried fish and stuff, which is good really cooked. But then, when we've had hamachi kama cooked by a mexican cook, it's not really cooked as crispy and dark as we like it. It's usually barely brown, and a good portion of the skin is soft. What is the deal with that?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

San Fran Part 2

So, we headed to the venue - the Hemlock Tavern. That was fun loading out. Double parking in an alley, blocking traffic, then driving around and around looking for a parking space. Finally we found a space several blocks away in a sketchy alley. I almost stepped on a needle walking down the sidewalk, for realsies!

So we played to a typical crowd of about 20 - 30 people, all standing or sitting at the back of the room. It was okay. The FP and I both had our volume too loud. Anyway, after that, we hung out with friends. We went to Japantown after and parked the car on the street. Then we went to a nearby bar with Gapguy. It was one of those karaoke bars. Everyone was smoking when we walked in, then a few minutes later all the ashtrays were gone. I'm not sure what the zoning and laws are like in San Francisco, but that was interesting. It sucked because the FP and I had envisioned getting some Japanese food at some late night noodle house. It was a Sunday and everything seemed dead. Gapguy informed us that nothing was open. We should have done the research earlier.

So the next morning, we got up, checked out and headed to Chinatown. We parked down the street at a meter lot. Holy shit those meter spaces are X Pen Sieve! We put all the change we could in the meter - which got us 1 hour. So I said, is that going to be enough? The Food Pimp said, yeah, if not, we'll put more change in. Yeah right. I've heard that before. So we went to get coffee. Starbucks. God, I just hate Starbucks for no other reason then that the roasted coffee smells like ass. There, I said it. The corporate bullshit is ridiculous as well, and the prices suck. Sure, I like frappacinos, though. But I can't afford them like I used to.

So then we walk into Chinatown.

I love it. So many sights and sounds and smells. Junk shops. Antique shops. herbal shops. Lots of them. Then we start getting to the food. Restaurants. Bakeries. We are looking for a more underground low profile place. We didn't research it, but my buddy Macadamia Pie told me to go to one of the basement restaurants. We pass the big places with the fancy signs and big showy balconies, but we're not taken in. They might as well have signs that say american tourists welcome. So we look and look and we don't really know what we are looking for. Roast duck. Razor clam. Roast pork. Pickled vegetable. Clay pot. Oxtail. Just looking for catch phrases that we like. Then after walking around desparately, racing the meter and passing out from starvation, we settle on New Woey Loy Goey Restaurant. The name just has a ring to it...

So we walk down. There's like only one table of two chinese men there. It's a very strange setup with the diner stools and counter, then the large round tables with the lazy susans. My mom always wanted a lazy susan when I was a kid. She would say it over and over. But we never got one. It would have been useful, because it was not unusual to have a chicken dish, a pork dish, a fish dish, a vegetable dish (often flavored with meat), rice, patis and vinegar on the table. So passing dishes around was always kind of like playing tetris.

Anyhoo, New Woey Loy Goey. Some people came in. It seems that some of them just went into the place in the morning to chat. One lady had her dog in her lap.

So we studied the menu. I love the way there are pictures of the animal next to the column. Although the pig looks like a cow or buffalo, and the cow looks like a gazelle. But whatever.

We got a nice plate of bok choy. It was bright green and crisp, yet cooked and tender enough. Very nice. Good chinese restaurants make something as boring as a plate of vegetables very exciting.

Roast Duck. It looked beautiful. It was pretty good. Lukewarm temperature, but that's just what I come to expect of roast duck. It was very...five spicy from what I remember. Very...Christmasy. It was good though, not great. Not old school Ding How in Metairie - those of you who know what I mean...know what I mean.

Oxtail stew. Now, it looks all light and not very impressive. But it was actually quite good. It was like pot roast style with root veggies - potato,carrot, sweet potato. And rice, of course. Meat and four starch. A complete meal. It was really good though. Tender and saucy. Tender and Saucy - maybe that's my new restaurant name for the imaginary restaurant that I had hoped to one day own.....

It was really good for a shot in the dark, although I'm sure there's other way better restaurants. But so what. I had never been there and I was perfectly satiated. Except for coconut bun....

So we walked back to the car.... and a few minutes too late. We got a fucking ticket!! I was very unhappy. $53. Boo!!!!!!! But I had to get over it. We got in the car and moved to a spot closer to the bakeries and restaurants. More change. But way closer. We spent what felt like hours looking for coconut bun. It was hard to find. Pork bun, custard bun, red bean, but no coconut!

Then we found these. Disappointing. The one was with like sweet shortening cream on the inside - no coconut flavor - with just coconut flake on the outside. The other was like a yeast roll with coconut paste on it, not so much like the sweet custard filling we were looking for. So we had to go on. There were one or two more places that we had to check, then we were going to give up. So we had about all lost hope. We went into this relatively busy place, and I didn't see any in the display. But I asked. Coconut bun? Yes. She pointed to the speed rack behind the counter. I lit up. How much? It was like 35 cents. So I got two. We sat at a table.

We laid them out with wide eyes. They weren't much to look at. We broke one open.

It didn't look like much. Then we took bites.

Can you see the pleasure on the FP's face? It was pretty damn good. Sweet and custardy, but not over the top sweet. I really liked the sesame seeds instead of coconut shred. They were a pretty damn good close to our venture into Chinatown. I wanted to get 6 or 12 more to take home, but the line at that point was long...and slow, and our meter was running out. So we went back to the car... and yea! no ticket. So we started to make our way out of San Fran.... TBC