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Insights, tips, and restaurant reports from CHOW editors and Chowhound.

Overheard on the Boston Board

"Highlights from the last visit were a delicious, melt-in-your mouth haleem, fantastic dal (with black-eyed peas), and biriyani, and just plain delicious naan." – erwocky on Mehak

"Kind of deluxe, but extraordinary: the baked giant sea clam casino at Locke-Ober; like a Rhode Island stuffed quahog that went to finishing school." – Mc Slim JB on the "stuffies" at Locke-Ober

"The taco salad at Rattlesnake is delicious. Make sure you ask for it with the pulled chicken (which they serve with the nachos) as opposed to the grilled chicken." – SaraASR

What the *&@#%!$ Should I Do with Carrot Greens?

You've signed up for a CSA, you're loving the fresh food and its adorable box, you're cooking every night and feeling healthy doing it, maybe you're even playing a little "Eye of the Tiger" in the kitchen as time whips by in an energized, excited frenzy of cooking local ingredients, and then screeeeeeeeech. You open up your fridge and are confronted with an abundance of carrot greens. The carrots they were once attached to have been dispatched successfully, but the greens remain. READ MORE

The First Filipino Food Truck!

The Manila Machine is the first Filipino food truck that we’ve heard of, and it turns out that it’s pretty great. Dommy’s favorite item: sausage pan de sal sliders. The sausages are a bit dry, but utterly delicious, and they’re perfectly matched with arugula and condiments, all stacked inside a wonderfully soft pan de sal bun.

The beef tapa slider is almost as good, says Jase, with nicely seasoned beef. "With about half as much mayo, it’d be perfect," he says. But Jase’s absolute favorite was a dessert: turon. It was well-fried and ungreasy, with a drizzle of caramel.

Their leche flan is spot on, with plenty of caramel and good texture, says Dommy. Their pork adobo is a bit dull, though.

The Manila Machine
Locations available through their website.

Discuss: Filipino food truck!

A Focus on Rice at Torafuku

Torafuku is an oddball in Los Angeles—an expensive Japanese restaurant specializing in rice. Every dish there is designed to bring out the flavor of the rice. Some folks think it’s overpriced and ridiculous, others think it’s excellent, unique, and one of the few places in Los Angeles to sample a refined, ultra-traditional style of Japanese cooking.

“The rice is good—I think if ... you've spent time in Japan enjoying high-quality Japanese-style rice that has been prepared this way (it's becoming far less common), this experience will be hard to find elsewhere,” explains bulavinaka. “Like a Frenchman can tweak out the nuances of a fine Bordeaux, a Japanese salaryman (before he's too drunk) can tell of the perfect steaminess, subtle sweetness, and toastiness that is brought out in each plump grain of rice worked from a kamado.”

The chef and the menu are both new and much improved. “I too, was disappointed on my visit 2 years ago. BUT I just went back last night to Torafuku on a lark, and was very pleasantly surprised. Try it again,” suggests J.L.

Torafuku [Westside – Inland]
10914 West Pico Boulevard
310-470-0014

Discuss: Torofaku (not to be confused with Totoraku) on Pico, right next door to Jaipur.

The Closest the Westside Gets to Little India

The new Gujerati thali at Samosa House in Culver City is unexpectedly good. It's not the most authentic of restaurants, say Moomin. “That said, it's generally as good as we can get on this side of town. Their menu is sort-of Indian-by-way-of-Leicester-if-your-clientele-was-primarily-vegan. And for all that, it's pretty tasty.”

But they’ve been serving up a Gujerati thali that’s really surprisingly legit. “It was distinctly Gujerati. Oily, sweet, salty, and hot. It featured a terrific soup, excellent sprouted daal, two complex, sweet, spicy varieties of shaak, and the aforementioned bhatura and halwa.”

“Is it the sort of thing that kills the craving for a trip to Mumbai? No. But it might save you a trip to Artesia,” says Moomin. It's available at the original Samosa House location, where the family matriarch seems to be spending her cooking time these days.

Samosa House [Westside – Inland]
11510 Washington Boulevard, Culver City
310-398-6766

Discuss: The new(ish) Gujerati Thali at Samosa House is...

Overheard on the Los Angeles Boards

"The Olive Press is my favorite and sells at a number of LA farmers' markets—it is the best; they also have a wonderful Arbequina. (You don't need to buy Arbequina from Spain any longer.)" – ceasuala on a preferred source for California olive oils

"The sandwiches are pretty much like Grandma would have made you after a long morning working out in the yard, if you'd grown up in Wisconsin. Meats and cheeses, or prepared salads on soft white or brown or rye bread. I like them, though some of them get pricey. Still, for a great beer and a sandwich, it's hard to beat, and they're very, very Midwestern folks, full of common sense and a healthy disdain for prima donnaism." – Das Ubergeek on Hollingsheads Delicatessen

"Today I had a Kurobuta pork belly bahn mi at the Mendocino Farms sandwich market in Marina Del Rey. It was delicious, if not authentic. But it was certainly crunchy—they braise the pork first, then caramelize it and chop it up.” – phurstlove on Mendocino Farms

A Sausage Slinger’s Many Facets

This week, we bid farewell to singer and sausage titan Jimmy Dean who died at the age of 81. For those who primarily think of the sausage aspect of his personality, look below for a clip of the man himself on his variety show, featuring none other than legendary Muppet Rowlf the Dog. (Warning: features hardcore karate moves.) And if you only think of Jimmy Dean's gastronomic exploits in a negative light, here Slate's Dan Mitchell sketches out the decline and collapse of the brand from a quality perspective. Don't blame Dean; blame Sara Lee. READ MORE

Bruce Willis Likes Vodka Soda

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CHOW interviews Bruce Willis. ... WATCH THE VIDEO

Who Is the Mysterious Chowhound Blogger?

A confusing tweet crossed the proverbial desk on Thursday: @Kay819 declared "The 1st interviewee with @Bethenny works for @CHOW? How'd he even find out about the assistant job?? @bravotv @Bravoandy"

Thanks to the unorthodox spelling of her name (and my studious reading of Us Weekly), plus the callouts to BravoTV, it seemed pretty obvious that this was referring to Bethenny Frankel of The Real Housewives of New York City. Yet what CHOW staffer was applying for an assistant job for the author of books like "Naturally Thin" and "The Skinnygirl Dish"? READ MORE

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s … SUPERCOOK!

Last night, I was poking around my fridge in the hopes of being able to whip up something using what I already had, but dinner looked bleak: a block of tofu, half a lemon, mustard, a carton of plain yogurt, and olives soaked in vermouth. Don't judge. READ MORE