Tag Archives: Crave

Craving & Savoring A Home-Cooked Meal From The Heart

27 Mar

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Sometimes, doesn’t love seem to find it’s way into our hearts through our stomachs? After a day of work, going to language class, then Bikram yoga, just when I thought I’ll probably just make a juice or something quick before bed, my bf made us dinner. Earlier in the evening, when I was out, Peter from a food service that we usually order from, Personal Gourmet, paid us a visit and my bf was able to purchase enough food to fill the freezer in the garage for our dinners and the occasional impromptu BBQs. My bf, Mr. Grill Master Flex, made crave worthy lobster tails, stuffed sole fillets stuffed with scallops and crabmeat, with a side of sweet butter corn. The first thing my bf learned about me is that I love good food, and without food, I almost fade to the point of no longer being functional. Dinner was made with a lot of love, and I was able to share it with the guy I love. Some of the simplest joys are the sweetest moments to savor, and this was one of them.

Craving Khan Toke Thai House

24 Mar

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Since when did San Francisco streets get so busy to the point where it takes half an hour to find parking on Geary Blvd? I’ve been asking every one who lives in the City who still lives here because I either forgot how long it takes to get somewhere or find parking, I’m overly optimistic in what can be done in a certain amount of time, or SF has become increasingly more crowded and congested. Maybe it’s a combination of all three… I made reservations at 7pm at Khan Toke Thai House, one of my favorite Thai restaurants of all time. My brother introduced me to this authentic Thai restaurant years ago, where the ambiance and service is as memorable as the food. Like most every other plan I made this weekend, I make a time recommendation and I’m the one who ends up running late. I called to push the dinner reservations I had with my family to 730pm, but by the time I finally parked and walked in the door, it was 8pm. Luckily, the restaurant wasn’t packed and reservations were probably not necessary. Not very many people know about this somewhat hidden gem; from the outside, Khan Toke doesn’t really look like much. As soon as we walk in, the decor and set up makes us feel like we’re in a home. An attendant, dressed in traditional Thai attire (just as all of the serving staff), at the door takes our shoes (so it’s best to wear socks) and we’re shown to our table in one of the several sections of the restaurant . The tables are low to the floor and it appears as though we’re all sitting on the floor, but there is a space cut out underneath the table for normal, comfortable seating.

I was craving a Thai tea, which I drank almost all of before dinner came. My mom, dad, brother, nephew, and I ordered family style, although with not every one had everything due to dietary restrictions and food allergies. We started off with the Sa-Te: beef and chicken charbroiled skewers served with peanut sauce and cucumber salad, Paw Pear Tod: deep-fried spring rolls stuffed with tofu, silver noodles, and vegetables served with sweet and sour sauce, Tom Yum: Spicy and sour lemongrass soup with mushrooms, tomatoes, cilantro and tofu Som Tum: shredded green papaya salad with carrots, tomatoes, green beans and ground peanuts, and Young Lady Salad: Green salad with grilled tender beef mixed in lime dressing, onions, cucumbers and tomatoes. For the main course, we had the Mus-A-Mun: Beef in red curry, peanuts, onions, sweet potatoes and coconut milk, Gaeng Ga Ree: Yellow-curry, sweet potatoes, vegetables, tofu, and coconut milk, Broccoli Gra Tiam: Broccoli sauteed with fresh garlic sauce, Pad Siew: Wide rice noodles sauteed in a dark soy with broccoli and egg, Pad Thai: stir-fried rice stick noodles with ground peanuts, tofu, bean sprouts, egg, and prawns, and side orders of brown rice. For dessert we had the Mango with Sticky Rice.

The food at Kahn Toke never fails to please and was just as good as I remembered it. That sentiment was validated when my 10- year-old nephew, whose severe food allergies (to fish and nuts to name a few) has lead him to become somewhat of a finicky eater, commented on how much he enjoyed his dinner. I guess driving around for parking on Geary Blvd was all worth it, but I guess the optimism should remain focused on cravings satisfaction and not really on any parking gods to bestow divine intervention on saving on lot fees (or prevention from walking several blocks in the chilly nights of San Francisco to pay those fees…. if, and only if, you actually made it to an open lot).

Craving & Savoring My Dinner Date With Rache

23 Mar

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Isn’t it counterproductive for a server stop us from ordering food? I can never understand when placing an order, servers always say “Ok, I think that’s just too much food.” It happens way too often… I had a dinner date with one of my favorite persons in the whole world, Rache, and made reservations to The House. I tried to look up Asia de Cuba’s phone number on my iPhone, but discovered that it was closed; however, the search engine took me to The House, an Asian Fusion restaurant with really great reviews. I was late to our reservation (damn Aritzia, bad time management, and difficulty getting a cab in Union Square San Francisco; note to self, gotta work on the first two pronto!), but luckily Rache is very forgiving and there was already a small plate of sweet pickled cucumbers on the table. To share, we ordered three of the specials that weren’t on the menu, the yellow tail sashimi with salsa, the seared scallops, and clams in curry sauce. From the Menu, we also ordered the white shrimp and chinese chive dumplings, and two entrees: the mushroom rice with grilled prawns topped with shaved bonito and the grilled sea bass with garlic ginger soy that comes with green beans and garlic noodles. We had to convince the server that we were going to finish what we ordered and her response was “Well, all I’ll have to do is pack everything up when you can’t eat any more.” The food was delicious! To the server’s surprise, there was nothing to pack. Never judge a girl’s appetite by the size of her stomach. Looks can be deceiving.

Dinner didn’t give us enough time to catch up and hang out, so we walked down Columbus and passed by all of the busy Italian eateries and friendly shop owners and keepers trying to promote some patronage to their establishments. We ended up at Caffe Greco for some Black Tea and I had an Italian dessert, a Strawberry Bambino.

The night was awesome, I was able to savor a great night with all that I was craving – good food, and more importantly, time with Rache. What I treat!

Craving & Savoring My Tofu House with My Brother

21 Mar

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Where can you get the best tofu soup in San Francisco? My Tofu House, which is where I went for lunch with my older brother, Stephen. I was craving to eat Korean cuisine, and especially craving to eat at this particular restaurant for sooo long, and was glad I finally had the opportunity to dine in with my brother while I was in town visiting. Like many Korean restaurants, banchan (side dishes) are set in the middle of the table to share, and are replaced if desired. These small side dishes of kimchi, bean sprouts, pickled cucumbers, fish slices, and spicy pickled radish come out before the meal, but can be enjoyed through out the meal. My brother ordered the Spicy Kimchi Tofu Soup and Bulgolgi (marinated beef), I ordered the Assorted Mushrooms Soft Tofu Soup with a medium level of spiciness, and we shared an order of the Seafood and Vegetable Bibimbap. Bibimbap is a signature Korean dish, and the variation we had was made with white rice, squid, shrimp, oyster, raw egg yolk, seaweed, and vegetables topped with a spicy sauce served steaming in a stone pot. The tofu soup is also served in stoneware, which keeps it hot the entire duration of the meal and which also allows the raw egg, that comes with the order, to cook once cracked and stirred into the soup. The redder the soup, the spicier, but no matter the level of spiciness, the temperature stays consistently hot! My brother and I devoured everything on the table, the food was so good. The diversity in cuisine, the authentic food, and the abundance of great restaurants in San Francisco are some of the things that I miss the most, second to my family and friends who live in SF of course. When I do finally get to take a trip to my hometown; however, my meals are only more appreciated and savored. I’m so happy that I got to share an awesome meal (and spend the day) with my brother, who definitely has an appetite as big as mine (if not bigger).

Food Soul Mate Double Date At Blue Jam Cafe

5 Mar

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What’s cooler than having a food soul mate? Having a food soul mate whose boyfriend is our boyfriend’s food soul mate. While driving down Melrose in Los Angeles, my bf and I saw swarms of people out on the street. We wondered what was going on and saw a restaurant and it’s name that read Blue Jam Cafe. With that many people waiting to eat there, we figured it must be great. After meeting up Face and Marshall, who both coincidentally frequent the Blu Jam Cafe, we all headed there to get some grub. What’s great about Blu Jam is that is serves breakfast all day, although they close at 5pm everyday. Not to mention, this cafe serves a variety of vegan and vegetarian options. While Face and I both ordered The combo soup and half salad, our guys both ordered the Brunch Burger, which wasn’t a coincidence since we’re Food Soul Mates! We all took advantage of the breakfast-all-day menu and shared the Blueberry Pancakes with fresh blueberries, powdered sugar, butter and syrup. I love beets, so the salad that I ordered was the Beets & Greens with arugula, fresh beets, goat cheese, black currants, candied walnuts (on the side) and a citrus vinaigrette. The soup that I ordered was the Homemade Vegan Split Pea Soup, which is probably the best split pea soup I have ever had. Although we didn’t have any blue jam while dining and Blu Jam, we did get to listen to some cool jams like The Beatles “Hey Jude” and George Harrison’s “Got My Mind Set On You.” We now know why this place is so popular, it is definitely a brunch hot spot for more than a few good reasons.

Craving Halo-Halo

27 Feb

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What is Halo-Halo? Halo-Halo is a Filipino dessert consisting of Coconut Gel, Red Mung Beans, White Beans, Sugar Palm Fruit, Jackfruit, Macapuno (Gelatinous Coconut Strings) mixed with shaved ice, ice cream, and milk. Instead of buying the ingredients separately, there are bottles of Halo-Halo mixtures that can be purchased at a local Asian market (hopefully) along with an ice shaving machine, which is needed for making shaved ice, an other key ingredient. One bottle serves two. Finding this bottle in a market where its workers may not understand what you’re saying is the hard part, making the Halo-Halo is the easy part. First we add the Halo-Halo mix, then the shaved ice, then the ice cream, then milk. If you’re like me, I prefer good ol’ fashioned vanilla ice cream; however, coconut, cantaloupe, mango, and ube flavored ice cream are all other great choices to give this dessert a more tropical taste. Regular, soy, almond or skim milk makes this treat plenty sweet, but adding condensed milk is also an option. While this dessert looks a like a drink, it’s eaten (and usually devoured by cravy individuals) with a spoon. Soooooo gooood!

Craving and Savoring Dinner With Friends

24 Feb

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Doesn’t it seem that the older we get, the harder it is to make time to spend with friends? Finding the time individually isn’t the hard part, but finding the time as a group when every one is available and/or in town, is. We’re in February and we finally celebrated January birthdays, but the get together was really more of an excuse to finally see our friend Jax’s new chic downtown loft, hang out with every one, and get some good downtown LA eats. We all went to Pete’s Cafe on Main St and had the Roasted Garlic Hummus, Sticky Crispy Calamari, and Tuna Flat Bread to start. All of the appetizers were very tasty! I had the Roasted Beet Salad: weiser farms beets, mache greens, truggle tremor cheese, marcona almond dust with white balsamic vingrette and the Quinoa and Couscous Risotto Entree: 12 hour tomatoes, rainbow chard, cauliflower, parmesan, and cream. Too stuffed for dessert, 13 of us tried to get drinks at a bar that we were told was unusually, and therefore, uncomfortably crowded. That lead us to head to the Artisan House, where there was enough room for us all to chat and enjoy each other’s company. Dinner was great, but the sweetest part of it was the awesome company. Craving and savoring time with the people we love are some of the best things in life, good food is just a bonus feature.

Craving For Hot Fudge Cake At Bob’s Big Boy

22 Feb

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Don’t significant others contribute to many of our cravings? Spending enough time with some one, we often start developing a taste for and an enjoyment of specific things that our favorite guys or gals crave. Even if we may not love something as much as the other (if at all), we can always be good sports and take one for the team, knowing that if going somewhere or doing something makes our honeys happy, we’re happy too. My boyfriend was craving to go to Bob’s Big Boy, a drive-in burger joint in Burbank, like the ones you see in the Greaser movies with a full service “Car Hop” on Saturday and Sunday nights, where All-American meals get delivered to the cars of patrons. On Friday nights, the parking becomes a classic car show. Since it’s been a little chilly-willy in SoCal lately (well, for SoCal), we opted to eat inside the 50’s style diner and waited a while to sit at the first-come-first-serve counter. Although I don’t and probably won’t ever share in my boyfriend’s craving for the Bob’s Big Boy’s Famous Original Double Deck Hamburger, we did share the Decadent Hot Fudge Cake, which he said I had to have. My bf is originally from the Los Angeles area and growing up his Mom used to take him and his sister to a Bob’s Big Boy, and he decided to take me to the oldest one in America, knowing I’d love their dessert. The Decadent Hot Fudge Cake is delicious vanilla ice cream between two layers of luscious devil’s food cake, smothered with creamy hot fudge and covered with whipped cream and a cherry. Mmmmm Mmmmm. That cake had no chance, it was over before it began.

For Sweethearts Who Savor Sour Hearts

14 Feb

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What does Valentine’s Day usually entail for a girl or guy with a sweet tooth? Some crave worthy candy, that’s what! One of my favorites are in the form of Jelly Belly petite sour hearts. Luckily for me, I have an amazing and uber generous friend with a cravy love for candy as great as mine, Bananniekins, who gives me so many of these little chewy and perfectly textured tiny bites of joy that I have to beg her to ration her generosity. This is because these things are so addicting and irresistible, that some one with poor self control may find one’s self staring at the bottom of an empty bag with a tummy full of little hearts. These pink, red and white sour candies in berry flavors are available in limited quantities in obscure candy shops every year around Valentine’s Day. I swear we need a secret password to find these shops, then a secret handshake to get some one at the shop to tell us that they are available for purchase. Every time I try to buy them at The Sweet Factory, they are always sold out. That means they are that popular or people like Bannanniekins hoard pounds of the stock allotted for the general public and allow only a special few to partake in the allotment. Although I crave these petite sour hearts all year long, I am able to savor them around this time thanks one of the sweetest girls I know. Rose are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet and these sour hearts are too! Happy Valentine’s Day!

Craving The Boiling Crab

12 Feb

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Is food ever worth an hour and a half wait? It appears there is food that’s worth the wait. An example of this is any day on a weekend at Alhambra’s The Boiling Crab on Valley Blvd, where we seafood fanatics put our names on the long list and patiently wait for a table in a packed restaurant with the aroma of the freshly cooked seafood filling the air. If we’re lucky enough we can wait at the bar, where we can order a dozen oysters, fried calamari, and sweet potato fries among other small appetizers. When we finally get seated on a table lined with white waxy paper and nothing but a plastic napkin caddy full and ready to be utilized. Since we’ve already built our appetites, we ordered five pounds of food: one and a half pounds of king crab legs, one pound of crawfish, two pounds of clams, white rice, half a pound of shrimp, red potatoes, and 4 pieces of corn on the cob that come in the same bag as the shrimp. That’s right, the food comes in plastic bags and we can order different seasoning, but the best is the “whole shabang,” which is like a garlic butter cajun sauce thats made from mild to extra spicy, depending on our liking. Mild to medium is plenty spicy. Once the food starts coming, we are allowed to dig in and appease the crave of the crab, The Boiling Crab, and appeased our cravings were.