Sunday, January 29, 2012

Tin Lizzy's

Chips, salsa, and queso

Top: Spicy tilapia taco - grilled tilapia, grilled onions and red peppers, lettuce, avocado, and spicy lime vinaigrette on a wheat tortilla
Bottom: Fried fish taco - fried tilapia, lettuce, pickled jalapenos, and poblano tartar sauce

Ahh, Tin Lizzy's. I had only tried their fish taco at the Taste of Atlanta a few years ago, which doesn't really count as an adequate sample of their food. ;oP I originally gathered these friends to try out Nick's Greek Food to Go... but alas, we could only meet up on Sunday, when Nick's is closed. So, we opted for Tin Lizzy's instead. There WILL be a Nick's post in the future!

The fish tacos did have a kick to them, but it wasn't a Three-Mile Island kind of kick. I was grateful! It was just the right amount, really. The tartar sauce was a nice touch in the fish taco; it makes sense to me to add tartar sauce to seafood. *shrugs* The onions and red peppers in the spicy tilapia were really flavorful. I'm glad I am including more onions in my diet. I love chips and salsa - they are my food kryptonite. I can't count the number of times I've made chips and salsa a dinner entree at home! Everything's pretty reasonably priced; the tacos are about $3 each, which is the norm. Two tacos plus chips and salsa and queso were quite enough to fill me up. I probably should have eaten fewer chips... but oh well! There is limited parking immediately in front of the restaurant but there is plenty of additional parking in the back. You just have to notice the sign for it. ;oP Unfortunately, there are only three locations and they are all inside the perimeter. Well, I suppose it's unfortunate for some anyway. The service at the Grant Park location was pretty good.

Homemade Dumplings

Five second rule! ^_^

Spring rolls

Talk about homemade! I met up with some friends, and we made dumplings from scratch. I'd always seen my dad make these by hand, and I never really knew what went into them. I just knew how to fold the dumpling (sort of) and that they were always delicious. The spring rolls brought back childhood memories. I remember my mom cooking each veggie, combining some, and leaving the rest a la carte so we had the choice of adding whatever we wanted. These are filling, healthy, and vegetarian. Of course, in my youth, we had the option of putting gluttonous amounts of sauce in each roll. Like a salad, the sauce probably negated a lot of the healthy parts of the meal, but it was so tasty! It was a great way to spend the day. :o)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Chinese New Year - Year of the Dragon

Fried chicken

Lunar New Year was on January 23rd this year. Chinese festivities are always held at the Chinese Culture Center in the Chinatown plaza. Ticket admission was $5 (cash only) including a $2 food coupon to be used inside the facility. When you walk inside, you see a conglomeration of visuals. Hopefully, you'll notice vendors lined up along the three walls of the facility. To the left is a stage where various performances take place throughout the day; the dragon dance is typically held outside in the parking lot at noon. It was pouring rain that day, so the dragon dance was moved inside. When the skies cleared, they also performed outside.

I've been to this festival every year for the past seven years now, and the only thing that's really changed are the demographics. There were a lot more non-Asian people there this year than I have seen in years past. The word is getting out! This event takes place over Saturday and Sunday, and I went on Saturday. I want to say that the performances are pretty much the same between the two days but I honestly have not paid that much attention to them in the past few years. Sorry! There used to be programs available in years past but no more.

There is a variety of food; in all the time I've been there, a lot of the vendors not only have remained the same but they have also scored the same locations year after year. For instance, SunO is located immediately to the right once you pass through the doors. The fried chicken pictured is not what I typically order - well, let me clarify - I do typically get the fried chicken but it looks different from the one pictured. The oyster pancake is a crowd favorite, and there's always a wait for it. One of those plates is enough to fill you up! Bubble tea is served for $2 a cup. In addition to food vendors, there were also "stuff" vendors - vendors who sold grocery items and vendors who were promoting particular causes or businesses. And there were more kitsch vendors out, too - not really a fan of those, but what can you do?

I think this was Sweet Auburn BBQ's first appearance; I was so confused as to why this restaurant was at a Chinese New Year festival. A friend of mine told me later that the owner is Vietnamese. That explains it! I've yet to try out this place; it's definitely on my list!

There are usually several folding chairs out in front of the stage, but only half were available this year. You can fit more people inside the facility if they're standing! ;oP All in all, I stayed for about two hours. I went with a couple of friends, one of whom had never been to such a festival before. She had a great time! She out-Asianed Asian people by stealthily entering without paying admission (she entered through one set of doors, completely missing the ticket booth and the second set of doors) AND was given a few $2 food coupons by outgoing people. Waaaah!!! I was impressed! I'll have to see if I can pull the same ninja moves next year. ;oD

Oh, in case you're wondering where you can find more info about when this festival takes place, you have to have a Facebook account. There's no official website. Facebook invites are essentially the modern-day equivalent of word-of-mouth advertising. ^_^

Birthday Dinner

A low-key, Italian-themed birthday dinner... this was lovely! The food was a mix of store/restaurant-bought and homemade. The desserts were definite bought - we ended up having three cakes. O_O So much food...  good times.

Cho Dang Tofu House

#55 Cho Dang Bossam - Pork and vegetable

Cho Dang Tofu House, we meet again! I purposely ordered a different dish this time around. I was curious what this "pork and vegetable" menu item was, so naturally I ordered it. ;oP I figured the pork would be sliced but I was surprised to see the pickled cabbage, and it was cold to boot! I wasn't a big fan of the cabbage but the pork was good. I think I pretty much ate only the pork. The centerpiece was a form of kimchi and too spicy for me to handle. Thank goodness for those side dishes!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Snowshoe, WV


Pork chops 

Bacon and French toast (using a sliced baguette in lieu of sliced bread) 

Prepping ribs for the next night 

 Alfredo sauce
Chicken alfredo 


Chili, ribs, chicken alfredo 

Soup - cabbage, carrots, pork, potato - reminded me of soup I had in my childhood! 

Scrambled eggs, bacon, cornbread 

Chicken, soup 

Lower left is a concoction consisting of mashed potatoes, eggs, and cheese - there may be bacon in there as well. Tastes good with ketchup!

My friends and I went snowboarding in Snowshoe, WV, recently. The trip had been in the works for a couple of months, but the food menu had yet to be determined. On the drive up, we came up with a rough list of American food items to purchase and were able to stop by a Walmart before heading to the resort. I'm not including a critique, just several pictures of the food and the scenery. It was my first time snowboarding! Despite the falls, I had a great time. I can't wait to go out there and try it again. :o)