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tweebiscuit's Profile

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How can I get Sichuan peppercorn flavor in my home cooking?

After being introduced to Sichuan cuisine in New York, I've become obsessed with the "ma la" flavor that comes from the Sichuan peppercorns, and have tried a number of strategies to get it in my home cooking, none with any success. I first tried buying some Sichuan peppercorns at a local spice market and grinding them in a Krups grinder, but the resulting powder was unpleasantly sandy and gritty, and it seemed to require a great deal powder to create only a bit of flavor.

I then tried creating a chile-and-peppercorn infused oil using this recipe: http://redcook.net/2011/03/28/sichuan... -- and had some success, but the sichuan peppercorn flavor is still very mild and disappears entirely when I add it to a dish like a stir fry or a home made Mapo Tofu.

What am I doing wrong? Do I, perhaps, just have a bad batch of peppercorns? Is there a good place to buy them online? Or, alternatively, if there's a prepared product (such as an oil or powder) that would give me satisfactory results, I'd happily use it. I'm not a fancy cook, I just want to get that "ma la" flavor in my simple home stir fries!

Sep 03, 2012
tweebiscuit in Home Cooking

What else should I eat at Szechuan Gourmet tomorrow?

Thanks for the suggestions, everyone! I decided to go with the three-pepper chicken, which was excellent, and spicy as I wanted it to be. I'd agree that Ma Paul Tofu is definitely my favorite so far -- it had the most Szechuan peppercorn flavor of any of the dishes (to my untrained palate at least) and just really hit the spot. I love eating Szechuan Gourmet for lunch -- eating an insane rollercoaster of a meal is a great way to break up a boring work day.

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Szechuan Gourmet
21 W 39th St, New York, NY 10018

Jan 19, 2011
tweebiscuit in Manhattan

What else should I eat at Szechuan Gourmet tomorrow?

I've been lucky enough to work in the Hearst Building for the last few days, which puts me right across the street of Szechuan Gourmet on 56th Street. My last day is tomorrow (I'm a freelancer), so I want my last lunch at SG for awhile to go out with a bang. So far I've had the "Ma Paul" Tofu, the Double-Cooked Pork and Chili Leeks, and the Kung Pao chicken; the tofu being my favorite -- I enjoyed the pork and chili leeks, but wasn't blown away by the dish as others seemed to have been. So, since SG has an overwhelming list of <a href="http://szechuangourmet56.com/food-del... specials available</a> and I only have one more shot for the forseeable future, what should I order tomorrow? I'm new to Szechuan food, but have discovered that I like my dishes spicy and interesting.

(Let's keep it to lunch specials for main dishes -- like I said, I'm a freelancer, not a wealthy business magnate -- but I'd order an appetizer as well if anything's recommended as unmissable.

)

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Szechuan Gourmet
244 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019

Jan 18, 2011
tweebiscuit in Manhattan

Ichiran Ramen Greenpoint

A new development here (sort of): I just received an email from Ichiran, with the following cryptic and not-entirely-heartening message. I'm still holding out hope that it will open, eventually -- a ramen shop two blocks from my apartment would be amazing.

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Dear Members,

Thank you for registering as a member of Ichiran limited membership shop.
Since we began our promotion in December of 2008 asking for your suggestions and comments, about 3,000 local residents, who live within walking distance of the restaurant, have registered as members. We are deeply impressed and excited by this amazing response and we want to thank everyone who has signed up so far.
We really appreciate your interest.

In response to many requests from people all over the U.S. in many different cities, we have set up a website to improve our registration system and open it up to people outside the local area.
Now you can go to our website for more information about us and our products at:

http://www.ichiran.co.jp/ny

Because we are dedicated to providing the same level of quality that we have achieved at our restaurant in Hakata, Japan, we promise never to compromise until we have found a way to achieve the same delicious taste our customers have come to expect.

We sincerely apologize for the time it is taking us to find everything necessary to maintain our level of quality, but when we are ready to open, those who have registered will be the first to know. We hope you will be among those who will want to come in and taste this finely honed delicacy just as it is served in Japan.

ICHIRAN - A restaurant specializing in Tonkotsu Ramen -

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*Please do not reply to this e-mail. For information only.

Nov 23, 2009
tweebiscuit in Outer Boroughs

Best Ethiopian?

Hey guys -- I went out tonight to get Ethiopian food. I'd been to Meskerem and Awash a few years ago, but wanted to try something new, and after reading some favorable posts on this board tried Queen of Sheba. Unfortunately, I didn't find the food that great at all -- the meat was dry, and the veggie dishes mostly bland and bitter (we tried both combo platters, meat and veg.) Definitely not up to the standard I remember from Meskerem. Since I was led astray by reading random posts here and there, I figured what we needed was a dedicated thread: Which restaurant has the best Ethiopian food within New York City limits?

Aug 08, 2009
tweebiscuit in Manhattan

5 Best Stops on the Mississippi River?

My girlfriend and I are currently on a cross-country road trip. We've already traveled through the Southwest states and Texas, and thanks to some friendly hounds on this board we've had some incredible food experiences. We're looking for a few more on the second leg of our trip.

We'll be travelling from New Orleans to Natchez, MS (going through Baton Rouge on the way), and from there up the Mississippi through Vicksburg, Clarksdale, Greenville, and Memphis. What are the absolutely unmissable hound stops we should make along the way? We're already stopping at Willie May's Scotch House in New Orleans -- what else would we be kicking ourselves to miss?

5 Best Stops on a TX/Southwest Roadtrip?

This was by far the best stop on the trip so far. The food was wonderful, and the owner struck up a friendly conversation with us. When I ordered an extra burrito to go, he said it was on him. An utterly charming and delicious stop. Thanks so much for the suggestion!

Apr 22, 2009
tweebiscuit in Texas

5 Best Stops on a TX/Southwest Roadtrip?

Thanks so much for the wonderful tips, everyone. You guys are better than any guidebook!

Apr 20, 2009
tweebiscuit in Texas

5 Best Stops on a TX/Southwest Roadtrip?

Oh, we are DEFINITELY going to this car wash. Thank you for a tip!

Apr 16, 2009
tweebiscuit in Texas

5 Best Stops on a Southwest Roadtrip?

These answers are all so wonderful! We're going to be making a ton of these stops, I'm sure. Thanks so much, everyone!

Apr 12, 2009
tweebiscuit in Southwest

5 Best Stops on a TX/Southwest Roadtrip?

(Reposting this from the Southwest board, since I realized it doesn't include Texas. Hope that's not against Chowhound etiquette!)

In a few days, my girlfriend I will be embarking on an epic roadtrip across the southwest, South, and mid-Atlantic. Check out the attached pic for the route, or here: http://www.oldeenglish.org/adam/roadt...

For me, this is a Food Trip -- I've never been to this part of the country, and since eating unique food is one of my main motivations for travelling, I want to make sure to sample the best regional cuisine the area has to offer.

So: What are the five unmissable places to eat on this route? I don't mean a good place to get pancakes in Memphis -- I'm looking for the kind of food that makes you want to travel in the first place, the places worth driving hours out of our way for. So far, I've been recommended the pozole at Richardson's in Phoenix, Smitty's BBQ in Lockhart, and Willie Mae Scotch House in New Orleans -- what are your top five?

Thanks so much for your advice!

Apr 11, 2009
tweebiscuit in Texas

5 Best Stops on a Southwest Roadtrip?

In a few days, my girlfriend I will be embarking on an epic roadtrip across the southwest, South, and mid-Atlantic. Check out the attached pic for the route, or here: http://www.oldeenglish.org/adam/roadt...

For me, this is a Food Trip -- I've never been to this part of the country, and since eating unique food is one of my main motivations for travelling, I want to make sure to sample the best regional cuisine the area has to offer.

So: What are the five unmissable places to eat on this route? I don't mean a good place to get pancakes in Memphis -- I'm looking for the kind of food that makes you want to travel in the first place, the places worth driving hours out of our way for. So far, I've been recommended the pozole at Richardson's in Phoenix, Smitty's BBQ in Lockhart, and Willie Mae Scotch House in New Orleans -- what are your top five?

Thanks so much for your advice!

Apr 11, 2009
tweebiscuit in Southwest