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bijoux16's Profile

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What's the difference between lunch and dinner at TODAI in Glendale?

I think the dinner includes king crab legs of some kind, but I'm not 100% sure on that.
the Glendale Todai is better than the Studio City one, in my opinion.

Apr 02, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

What do you put down the garbage disposal?

broccoli stalks. I speak from experience... even when you chop them up into smaller pieces, they're usually so thick and sturdy that they get stuck on the blades without being chopped up and disposed of.

Mar 10, 2007
bijoux16 in Cookware

CPK Express - Sherman Oaks Fashion Center

I've ordered salads and pizzas to go from CPK - I would recommend against the salads. they're never half as good or fresh as they usually are at the sit-down CPKs. the pizzas are usually ok (if you usually like CPK's pizzas at their sit-down locations, that is), but I found that the crusts get chewy and tough very quickly.

Mar 09, 2007
bijoux16 in Chains

Loads of Kimchee-what can I do?

maybe I'm stating the obvious (sorry if I am!) but cold kimchi is amazing with hot rice and dried/salted seaweed ("geem" or something like that, in Korean). wrap a piece (a sheet) of seaweed around a spoonful of rice and some kimchi, and eat - it's so simple but so good. I love the mixture of hot and cold, as well as the crispness of the kimchi with the soft rice.

Mar 05, 2007
bijoux16 in Home Cooking

romantic sushi places in LA

I go to R-23 when I want an elegant, romantic atmosphere with good (and sometimes excellent) sushi. my parents celebrated their anniversary there earlier this year and they loved it.
(it's on 2nd st. in little tokyo/downtown LA; don't be fooled by the exterior, because it's much prettier on the inside!)

Mar 02, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

Your Favourite "Instant" Ramen?

I do the exact same thing! I also eat ramen (ramyun for Koreans like me) with cold kimchi - the hot and cold sensation is really refreshing.

Feb 26, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

And the best sweet bean paste baked treats are?

I agree with frank828 - korean bakeries have lots of pastries with sweet red bean paste. My favorite place is the bakery in the Koreatown Galleria -

3250 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90006

they have two kinds of sweet red bean buns - one with a more paste-like filling, which is flatter in appearance, and one that has actual beans incorporated into the paste, which is more ball-shaped. sometimes they have red bean paste donuts, with granulated sugar sprinkled on top - they're heavy, dense and really satisfying.
I love mochi that has lots of red bean filling and only a thin skin on the outside, but they're hard to find.
you can find cans of sweet red bean paste in most Asian markets. I baked a green tea layer cake for my dad's birthday using the red bean paste as the filling. it's also good with vanilla ice cream, and to be honest, I eat it by the spoonful sometimes.. :)

Feb 25, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

Favorite unusual toppings for vanilla ice cream?

I like gummy bears in my vanilla ice cream, but I don't know anyone else who does. :) my friend used to work at a small frozen yogurt place (not ColdStone) and she said some of the more popular choices were - animal cookies (the pink and white ones with sprinkles), honey roasted peanuts, fresh pineapple with coconut, and granola.

Feb 25, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

Whole Foods Gems

I think my favorite part of Whole Foods is the bulk items section - peanut butter malt balls, dark chocolate covered candied ginger, five different types of raisins, dried figs/prunes/apricots, and about fifteen different varieties of granola. in the fall, my local Whole Foods Market was apple mecca, I think they had at least 8 different kinds of apples at any given time.

Feb 23, 2007
bijoux16 in Chains

CPK, Other entrees besides Pizza

my Korean, kimchi-loving dad has occasional cravings for CPK's Jambalaya. I like their BBQ chicken salad.

Feb 23, 2007
bijoux16 in Chains

planning a visit to La brea bakery...

for anyone who wishes to try La Brea Bakery's baked goods but isn't able to visit the actual bakery, select Whole Foods locations carry a limited selection of their scones and sweet buns and cookies. (I've found them at the Glendale WF and the WF across from the Grove)

Feb 23, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

Japanese restaurant in LA (Downtown or Pasadena area) to take my wife for birthday??

another vote for R-23. I've celebrated several birthdays and anniversaries there; the food is good (the sushi is not the best deal, especially with Sushi Gen just a few blocks away, but the cooked dishes and appetizers are great) and the atmosphere is understated and elegant. the service is great as well, though it can be a little slow sometimes. I wouldn't recommend Sushi Gen for a "nice" meal, though the high quality of sushi and sashimi is undeniable; each time I've gone, the atmosphere was so loud and hectic that my dining companions and I could barely hold a conversation. I'd strongly recommend against Sushi Roku: I've had nothing but surly service, oversalted entrees and overpriced, pitiful sushi.

Feb 21, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

What's your "bedtime snack"?

I love to set aside 30 minutes before I get ready for bed, usually around midnight, for a glass of wine, some almonds and a good book. my mother did it while I was growing up, and now I do it too. it's a great way to wind down from a busy day and have some "me" time.

Feb 20, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

Bonne Maman Strawberry Preserves w/ pic

I love their blueberry preserves. I actually found their strawberry preserves a bit too sweet for my tastes, but everyone else in my family loves it.

Feb 20, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

Why does being 'treated' provoke such anxiety in some?

I grew up in a Korean family and from my personal experience, it is almost a tradition to "fight"over the check. I can't think of a single restaurant meal in which my mom and my aunt (or my dad and my aunt or any configuration of family members) didn't argue about who would pay the check. it may sound strange, but if there wasn't argument over the check, that meant that someone hadn't offered to pay, and that would be considered to be rude. I don't know how common this is within Asian families and especially within non-Asian families, but almost every single asian friend of mine is familiar with this strange phenomenon.
and the birthday issue is an interesting one, one that confused me a lot in elementary school when birthday parties were a huuuuuge deal - while my parents believed that the birthday person (or parent) should pay for the celebratory meal, I grew up under the impression that the birthday person's meal should be paid for by friends and family.

Feb 19, 2007
bijoux16 in Not About Food

Need ideas for post-break up distraction cooking...AKA my day tomorrow

yes! a few years ago, my best friend and I went through breakups in the same weekend (what are the odds?) and we consoled ourselves by buying jars of the following - peanut butter, caramel topping for ice cream sundaes, marshmallow fluff, and nutella. spoons, jars, and hours of girl talk... it's become one of my fondest memories!

Feb 19, 2007
bijoux16 in Home Cooking

What to do with these Korean ingredients?

I think you're on the right track - sesame oil and rice wine vinegar. I don't know any exact measurements; I usually just mix and taste until it's good. the sesame oil imparts a wonderful fragrance and adds warmth to the "punch" of gochujang, and the rice wine vinegar thins it out texturally and adds a subtle sweetness to it as well. depending on what I use it for, I sometimes add sesame seeds to it just for fun. I hope you get more replies!

Feb 19, 2007
bijoux16 in Home Cooking

How to keep cheese in refrig from being moldy?

wow, lots of great tips here! I hope I'm not repeating anyone or stating the obvious when I say - keep your bleu cheeses far far away from your other cheeses, especially mild ones like brie... I kept a super stinky bleu cheese in close proximity to my other cheeses and I swear, they all started to taste like bleu cheese. I also blame the bleu cheese for making my brie turn an odd shade of green after only 2-3 days.

Feb 19, 2007
bijoux16 in Cheese

Casual dinner near downtown?

I've been to both Hop Li locations and I thought the Chinatown location was much better than the one in West LA.

Feb 17, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

What's in the can? Canned food....

larvae. (found in Korean markets) my dad loves the stuff.

Feb 16, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

Street food longings

I think #4 is boong-uh-bbahng? I think it means "goldfish bread" when it's translated from Korean. I've burned my tongue a countless number of times because I couldn't wait for the red bean filling to cool before taking a big chomp out of it. (I used to go to a Korean supermarket in Los Angeles that made these fresh everyday, so it's not impossible to find in the states)

Korea has amazing street food. the blood sausage is great - warm, with a barely chewy exterior and a soft, almost moist interior - so good. Walking down any well-populated street in Seoul is a feast for the senses - there's so many delicious and simple (and often, very portable) treats everywhere!

bitsubeats pretty much covered it all. my most recent discovery was last summer in Korea - caramelized sweet potatoes in bite-sized squares, served in a paper cone. yum! I think it's called go-goo-mah-tahng? (not sure)

Feb 16, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

Taqueria Chihuahua On Venice Blvd. Now Open!

I think my heart stopped when I read "No nachos"
I LOVED the nachos at Taq Chihuahua. flavorful carne asada, chunky guacamole, gooey cheese.... my boyfriend I probably had those nachos at least twice a week for two years. we used to share a plateful and marvel at how lucky we were to be able to indulge in such a delicious, simple plate of happiness. no nachos.... I don't know how I'll break the news to him.

Feb 14, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

what foods do you miss most when you leave LA?

agree re: korean food

Feb 14, 2007
bijoux16 in Los Angeles Area

Stocking Up

this may not qualify as 'stocking up' for survival's sake, but whenever the weather gets super cold I buy a lot of chocolate and invite friends over for board games and chocolate fondue, and hot chocolate in the morning.

Feb 13, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

Who would be a good Top Chef host?

I don't understand the criticism about Padma Lakshmi's weight or clothing choices. do slender people not eat? are larger people more qualified to judge food? her appearance and wardrobe choices are an undeniable part of the show by virtue of the fact that the show is done through a visual medium (television), but I find it unfair to judge the value of her opinions primarily on her visual appearance. you can't blame her for being beautiful, and the fact that her husband is a famous author shouldn't even be an issue. I personally thought she did a good job of being involved and vocal in the show without being overbearing, or worse, being merely decorative.

Feb 13, 2007
bijoux16 in Food Media & News

New England Pride - Gift Foods? [moved from Boston board]

I think apple cider donuts are virtually impossible to find on the west coast. I grew up in Los Angeles and only when I moved to the New England area (New Haven, CT) for graduate school did I learn of their existence.

Feb 12, 2007
bijoux16 in General Topics

Chocolate covered fruit for V-day

white chocolate covered blueberries (fresh, not dried) - had them at a party and they were delicious.
second the rec for candied ginger - dark chocolate covered candied ginger is amazing.

Feb 12, 2007
bijoux16 in Home Cooking

baking - your trusty substitutes

for low-fat baked goods - I like to substitute pureed dates and prunes in the place of butter when I bake chocolate cake or chocolate muffins. it adds a dense and rich quality to chocolate that I enjoy, and I prefer the texture it creates over the often spongy, rubbery quality that I get when I use applesauce. the puree does make your finished product much denser than what you would get if you used butter (probably because it lacks the moisture content of butter), so it might not suit your taste.

the brown sugar recommendation is a great one. you'll want to use it in everything you bake once you taste the difference!

in cookies and shortbread and other goods in which butter is a prominent ingredient and flavor, use high quality butter like Plugra. I never understood why people loved the taste of butter so much until I took a whif of Plugra.

I've been experimenting with whole wheat flour for the last year or so, and I'm still having some trouble. substituting whole wheat flour for 100% of the plain all-purpose flour makes my baked goods turn out like brown bricks. I've tried whole wheat pastry flour, but that didn't help much. I've read that people usually get good results using 1/2 whole wheat and 1/2 all purpose flour, but I have yet to try it.

lastly - I separate my eggs and whip up the whites and fold them into the batter last, even when the recipe doesn't specifically ask for it. I like how it lightens the texture. (I don't do this with things like pound cake where you want the heavy richness)

Feb 12, 2007
bijoux16 in Home Cooking

Outer Space Breakfast recipes needed

I've seen freeze dried fruits and vegetables near the bulk aisle at Whole Foods. freeze dried corn, peas, onions, tomatoes, cranberries, strawberries, peaches, mangos.... and the list goes on. I've always been curious as to how they taste and what people use them for

Feb 11, 2007
bijoux16 in Home Cooking

What do you have the most difficulty cooking?

wow, thank you so much for the tips! I think part of my problem is that I don't wait long enough for the dough to rise before I bake it. (lack of patience...). the dryer idea is brilliant! thanks again.

Feb 10, 2007
bijoux16 in Home Cooking