Back to the Poseidon Project and the Haad Sai Thai Food Truck:
The Missus ended up working on a recent Friday evening at the last minute, which left me alone at 630 pm on a Friday. So I headed out looking for a place to eat.....as I figured everyplace was packed. I even tried Pacific Time, but there was no parking. As I rolled up Morena, I noticed a Food Truck in front of The Poseidon Project, I thought "why not"?
Turns out it was a Thai truck called Haad Sai Thai.
The guy running the truck was really friendly and several folks in Poseidon were eating noodles; a couple of folks even doing take-out from the truck, so I ordered some drunken noodles with chicken, bought a bottle of one of my recent favorites....I was surprised at the price, cheaper than what I recently paid for a bottle at Keg and Barrel at $9.53 with tax, and had a seat.
The drunken noodles were nothing to write home about, though it was decently spicy at a heat level 7 and at least the noodles weren't mushy.
The chicken was dry, not enough "wok hay", other than the heat level, missing the sweet and salty of drunken noodles, and a bit over-priced at $9, but the savings on my bottle balanced things out for me. The portion size was quite large though and I got to watch a beer nerd ("bro") get a bottle of Delirium and match it with a California Burrito from Santana's across the street....a first for me.
Plus, the folks working here are great. I'm really warming to the place. Even though they only currently have 8 pulls, the bottles seems nicely priced.
Poseidon Project 4126 Napier St San Diego, CA 92110
Plus I just can't help but keep humming this song.
Thanks for stopping by to read mmm-yoso!!!, food blog. Today, Cathy is writing a short post, not about any particular restaurant, but about some particular food items. Ed (from Yuma) has a nice post coming up tomorrow. Kirk is still out of the country and enjoying his international vacationing.
In 2011, Kirk wrote a great post about fried animal skins, quite a few were -ahem- less than common and difficult to find unless traveling internationally. I thought that writing a short post about commonly found chicharron would be nice. Dropping into any Mexican Market, you can probably find a variety of both pork and beef fried skins, some with meat attached (the far left) and some just the skin (second from left). Those are sold by the pound and can simply be eaten while wrapped in a corn tortilla, with or without some hot sauce.
The above is the counter at Northgate Gonzalez, a family owned and run Mexican grocery chain which I haven't posted about yet. Sometimes, in this same Mexican Markets, there is a steam tray area with stews and there is usually a choice of rojo (red) or verde (green) chicharron stews called guisados, which can be served taco style. Because the fried skins have been stewing, they are softened and not crispy, but still flavorful. The above are from Krist Liquor and Market. You can always order fresh made chicharrones by the 1/2 pound at Carnitas Uruapan.Long ago, I had mentioned fried chicken skin, dilis and bulaklak sold by the pound at Kababayan Market, which is now located in Spring Valley (I'll have a post about the new location soon).Fried chicken skins are my weakness and backup snack for just about every situation. I have also mentioned purchasing fried chicken skins at Chic-Boy in National City, because I know where to find fried skins when the craving strikes. Then there was the day we were at TJ Oyster Bar and I noticed the 'Starters' section of the menu while waiting in line at the newest location (again, I have a post forthcoming)...the second item, 'Chicharron Fish'.Hoping it would be a plate of these (above) fried fish tails, I was disappointed to see...this gigantic plate of more or less fish nuggets. But, oh what wonderful, meaty, lightly breaded nicely fried nuggets these were. The dipping sauce- umami- a deep, fishy, tart, lime-vinegar mix which went perfectly with the sliced raw onions. Not really skins, but fried and tasty.
I hope your long weekend is going well. It's not over!
This is mmm-yoso!!!, a food blog. Kirk needs a break, Ed (from Yuma) is on a break and so Cathy is writing the posts for a few days.
As mentioned in prior posts, The Mister and I choose a different ethnic market each week when it's time to go food shopping. There are severallocations of Seafood City in the county, but the one in Mira Mesa is closest to home. There is a (new) food court inside, but just next door is a storefront location of Chowking, which I've posted about, a couple of times. Chowking is a subsidiary of Jolibee, the largest fast food chain in the Philippines. Straight ahead in this photo is the front door to Chowking; there is another door where you can enter from inside the Seafood City store.The menu is pretty straightforward and contains breakfast and lunch/dinner items as well as snacks and sweets. There's even a small freezer which holds Siopao to take home (Filipino-Chinese buns that can be steamed or heated in the microwave for a few seconds).This is what we ordered for one lunch the other day. That's a coffee milk tea (because I can never decide). I like how the styrofoam packaging is manufactured with steam holes, so the contents, if fried, will remain crispy.The 'Chinese Style Fried Chicken' plate ($4.99) is pretty much my go-to item here, because the fry is always fresh, crispy, not greasy and so very tasty. It's 'Chinese' because of the spices used-and because Chowking is (and initially was only) a fast food Chinese restaurant before it was bought out by the Philippine based company (notice the Chinese lettering on the front of the counter, two photos up). The steamed rice, with egg and vegetable is always fresh.The Garlic Chicken Lauriat ($5.99). A 'Lauriat' is a rice meal, so is essentially the meat (nicely battered and fried dark meat chicken pieces) and rice along with veggie Canton noodles, two small veggie spring rolls and two red bean paste filled sesame balls...not lumpia, not pancit...Chinese food... Remember this hot days we had not too long ago? The mango shaved ice here is only $2.99. Quite large, with lots of ice, mango and condensed milk; it's a refreshing break.
I hope your week has gone well!
Chowking 8955 Mira Mesa Boulevard San Diego 92126 (858) 653-4977
I was in National City recently looking for a specific ingredient...had no luck at Seafood City, but I noticed this new "turo-turo" (point-point) place had opened up.
So I decided to stop and grab some breakfast. Man, this restaurant is huge......
The woman working the counter was very friendly and the food looked decent....so I went with the Longanisa and Chicken Tocino....I had to stop her from piling on the garlic rice and still ended up with a load of carbs.
And the egg of course, which had been sitting in a steam tray. The garlic in the rice was burnt, thus making the whole deal quite bitter. The longanisa was as expected, a meaty-juicy pouch of loveliness. The chicken tocino was really tough, it had been cooked down too long. It was also more salty than sweet.
It was quite obvious, this was one of those quantity over quality places.
No big deal......I made a note to revisit one day...no rush.
Funny thing happened the following week. I saw an old coworker of mine. She dropped off lunch from this "new place" to try.....it was from Manila Resto.
She got me the Bicol Express and the Beef Kaldereta, two dishes I love. She even told me they went easy on the rice....it was still way to much for me.
Bicol Express combines wonderful savory (from the fermented shrimp paste- bagoong alamang), with spicy (from chili peppers). This one kind of weak.
This was really tough, lacked spice....I mean it was really whimpy, and though it was salty, it could have used more bagoong.
The Kaldereta was slightly better; though it was still on the bland side. I enjoy mine a bit tangy from the tomato with a beefy edge. The pieces of beef were huge and had to be cut into pieces before eating. It was also a bit too greasy for my taste.
You won't go hungry after this.....but it's obviously more about quantity than quality here.
Manila Resto 1420 E Plaza Blvd Suite D2 National City, CA 91950
mmm-yoso!!! still blogging about food after all these years. Kirk and Ed(from Yuma) are each enjoying this weekend in other states while Cathy is in California, continuing to write blog posts.
Driving to the Naval Base San Diego is different than driving to MCAS Miramar, in direction as well as the surrounding neighborhoods and their food options. Miramar is where many civilians can enter the base and watch the Blue Angels annual Airshow, afterwards perhaps stopping in at one of the many restaurants listed in the Miramar/Mira Mesa area, while the closest many civilians get to the 32nd Street Naval Base is East Village or Downtown. Many national chain restaurants are located close to that Base and it's great to find a local, family owned restaurant or coffee shop in the Barrio. Filipino Food & Bakery has been in the corner of this mall, at Main Street near 28th, since early 2013. It's pretty large inside and can get busy during the week. The pan de sal, a sweet, yeast-based bread as well as several other types of pan and several dessert products are baked here daily. More or less a typical Turo-Turo (point-point) restaurant, Filipino Food and Bakery is also typical in its food preparation-every Filipino place (restaurants and homes) where I have had a meal prepares their traditional, similar recipes just a bit differently (as I do with meatloaf).The lumpia here (two for $1) are fresh and tasty. The crisp, thin wrapper is an excellent conduit for the mostly fresh vegetable filling. The plates and cutlery here are throwaways, but useful in that we always have leftovers. The above two item combination ($8) includes either garlic rice or (as above) thin rice noodles with various vegetables (pancit).
That item in the left is pork adobo. (Adobo is essentially a marinade containing vinegar, garlic, salt/soy, bay leaf and black pepper; hence the variations by different cooks) and on the right is sisig (pork cracklings or head meat or liver marinated in sour or vinegar then grilled). I've enjoyed the versions here...many times. This ad, aimed at Comicon visitors, appeared in late June. The brunch menu began on July 11 and still is available on Sunday. I've been most curious about one item... This looks familiar, you say? Why, yes, a Scotch Egg, but made with longanisa, a sausage, similar to chorizo, but in the Philippines, longanisa is made with various meats and regional flavorings. This one? Garlic (and probably pork)! This version of Scotch egg is wonderful. Perhaps ube (purple yam) waffles with a piece of fried chicken along with the Eggs Boni...we enjoy the food and flavors here!
I hope you are having a good weekend.
Filipino Food & Bakery 2852 Main Street San Diego 92113 (619) 549-5665 Website Open Mon-Sat 8-8, Sun 8-5
Things have been pretty busy the last year and a half or so. I've noticed that I eat more lunches at my desk than I ever did before. Yes, I know it's spposed to actually hurt productivity. But there are those things called conference calls, web meetings, and the ever looming and shifting deadline.
Most often, I'll run out and pick up something from Nijiya; probably at least once a week. So many of the lunches I have at my desk look like this.
I'm definitely not complaining about this one....it's comfort food.
Nijiya Market 3860 Convoy St Ste 109 San Diego, CA 92111
"MG" is a good family friend; the Missus is one (I didn't know that folks can have as many as seven) of her son's Godmothers. We used to work in the same department and had some really fun potlucks. We're now in different departments, but she will sometimes drop by to make sure I'm getting fed. Like bringing me hamanado and tapa from Tita's for lunch. Good lord......how in the world was I able to finish this before?
For some reason, it seems time, at least in my mind, hasn't been good to Tita's...the grey color, the tough beef...though I still like the hamanado. In spite of it being on the tough side I like the mild sweetness and the salty tones.
Yes, it's pretty much about quantity....the love of abundance. It's enough for at least two meals.
Tita's Kitchenette 2720 East Plaza Boulevard National City, CA 91950
One day she dropped off this:
I recognized it immediately...I asked if it was from Tem's and was told "no, it's from Nanay's". Which left me a bit confused, until I found out that Tem's is now Nanay's and apparently the food is basically the same. I will say I enjoyed the "spicy chicken" much more than the pork version I had when the place was Tem's. The "BBQ" chicken kind of reminds me of food court stuff, but it's not terrible....which the rice was, with quite a bit of hard grains in it.
Nanay's Best BBQ 6715 Mira Mesa Blvd San Diego, CA 92121
Speaking of bad rice.......
Just because I have to eat at my desk doesn't mean I can't have stuff to post on. So on the way back from a meeting I stopped by Yum Cha Café. I hadn't been here in ages. I got the Hainan Chicken Rice....mostly because I must be a glutton for punishment. I mean, the place used to have passable cheap grub, but if this is any indication, they've really taken a dive. Dry tasteless chicken...the rice was hard and dry....ick.
Yum Cha Cafe 6933 Linda Vista Road San Diego, CA 92111
And then there are the times I get to follow-up on a place I had been wondering about. In this case Artisan Bento. I got the Delux Bento...which clocks in at $13.95! I chose Ginger Pork, Shogayaki...which, being on the more salty side really reminds me of what my mom used to make.
I gotta say that these folks seem to have it down. From the time I ordered to leaving the place, less than 10 minutes!
I still enjoy the ohitashi. The kyuri (cucumber) was really bland. The miso soup seemed much more watered down. I usually cringe at the thought of multi-grain rice. But for some reason, I like the version at Artisan Bento....sheesh...what next? Macramé???
For dessert I chose the strawberry cheesecake which I proceeded to give away. I think I can do the regular bento next time.
Artisan Bento 2505 5th Ave San Diego, CA 92103
One change from my previous post. They now open at 11....so no more walking in at 10 to find out they don't serve food until 11.
So, let me ask you.....do you eat at your desk? If so, what's your go to meal to have there? and what do you think about having to eat there?
I've often mentioned what a great bunch of friends I have. We all get along and always have great time. These guys are up for anything; like the "Amazing Graze" and our Porcine Party. Sadly, I haven't been to help plan or attend many of the recent events, work has kept me busy over the last year or so. So when one of our gang said she wanted to do karaoke for her birthday, it was naturally a "yes, of course." But there was a catch, she also wanted a whole roast pig as well! Not a big deal, right? I mean, I see folks dragging swine into karaoke rooms all the time....yeah, right? Anyway, it was easy enough to get the assignments done; YummyYummy with her connections and persuasive manner would talk the place into letting us bring an entire hog into one of their rooms, I swing the swine, and the rest would be gravy, or is that sauce.
Anyway, after polling some of my acquaintances, and my "Filipino Mom's" in the office next door to us, one porker rendered its way to the top, Porky's Lechon. Now, I gotta say, based on my visits and meals at the place this was a major leap of faith. But I gotta say, this was a very moist fifty pounder.
In case you don't believe that we actually brought a whole pig into a karaoke room, here's "Xiang Jiao" doing the honors as the disco lights dance around it's roasted body...... To paraphrase the lyrics on the screen...."This pork has taken its toll on me......"
Thanks to JohnL for sacrificing his van to transport said swine.....I hope it doesn't still smell like pork heaven. Big thanks also to TFD and MrC for getting the Hen Xuc Banh Trang and baking the cake, and of course "YY" and Quanito for coordinating the room.
Thanksgiving in August:
Recently "XJ", "YY", and their family moved into new digs. they've been wanting to do sort of a house-warming type of thing. "XJ" had also gotten a Weber Smokey Mountain...she's really BBQ Grrrrl I guess, and wanted to put it into service. So I brought my WSM over and we did a little BBQ kinda thing for the gang.
Of course BBQ takes a while and needed our strength, so their mom was nice enough to make us a delicious breakfast.
We timed things pretty well and everything was ready by 2pm as we had planned.....tri-tip, salmon, ribs....
And a whole lot more.....charcuterie and cheese board, TFD's mom made a delicious pork and jackfruit salad, roasted vegetables, salad, and of course dessert.
Around the time we were setting up, someone said "this is like Thanksgiving, but better!" And so it came to pass, Thanksgiving in August. I think we'll make this a tradition. A pretty good idea, don't you think?
Nothing like the power of pork to bring people together!
Recently, "YummyYummy" who had her first real exposure to Filipino Food at Kamayan Night at Villa Manila asked me which turo-turo (point-point) place made the better lechon kawali and sisig in the Mira Mesa area; R&B or Manila Fast Foods. While I do believe that timing factors in with regards those two dishes, especially the lechon kawali, I felt up for the challenge....hey, it's deep fried pork, who wouldn't be up for it? At it's most basic, lechon kawali is simply pork belly that has been simmered in water with perhaps some bay leaf and peppercorns, cooled, seasoned, then deep fried. Still, there was quite a difference in the versions served at R&B and MFF, especially with regards to the lechon sauce.
The lechon was probably the best I've had at R&B. It's a bit on the drier side, but not dried out. I think time was on my side this time around. The skin was crisp, though it seemed a bit over-fried. I even enjoyed the lechon sauce, which was less bitter than I recalled, also having a mild sweetness to it. The sisig was good, a nice balance of sour and spicy, though there were some hard and chewy bits in it. Again, probably the best I've had here.
You know, after all these years, I'm waiting to try the hamonado......
R & B Filipino Cuisine 11257 Camino Ruiz San Diego, CA 92126
Manila Fast Food and Desserts:
So, I've also had mixed results here as well, though I think MFF has been the more consistent of the two.
So, what did I like? Well, my goodness, these were some pretty hefty pieces of pork....it had just come out of the kitchen and were very moist. As you can see, there are no complaints regarding the fat being rendered off (though I'd say that isn't a bad thing). The skin was a bit too hard and man, this was fatty. Yet it was quite enjoyable in that "this was nice, but I'm glad we're not having this again for a while" kind of way. Not as seasoned as R&B, but much more moist and decadent. Not a big fan of the lechon sauce this time around as it tasted watered down.....though the pork was not.
The sisig was much more mild than I recall, though the texture was good. For me, it needed at bit more spice and vinegar, but was very tender and moist without being mushy.
The folks here have always been really friendly....I've been cutting down on rice and carbs, the gentleman who served me was very funny as we determined the amount of rice I wanted. In the end, I was declared, "you can't be Fiilipino".... which they found funny. But ,they did go easy on the rice for me. The folks here are really friendly and nice.
Manila Fast Food and Desserts 8979 Mira Mesa Blvd San Diego, CA 92126
So there you go "YY", it's all about timing and what you enjoy....part of the fun is figuring that all out!
I hadn't been down to National City in a while, at least it seemed that way. So this past weekend I headed down with no real plans, I actually was taking one of my scenic drives....you might like evergreens, giant redwoods, an ocean view.......for me, well, it's seeing a new turo-turo shop and the smell of sisig in the morning!
This one was a surprise; I was taking the 8th Street drive from the 5 and was shocked to see Conching was gone! After how many years? It was now something called Erlinda's Filipino Cuisine and Ice Cream Parlor.
Well, the interior looked the same, the food looked the same.......I decided to have a two item combo.
Now, I've cut down severely on my rice intake in recent years. I even asked them to go easy on the garlic rice....I didn't need too much. I guess this is going easy on the rice?
In retrospect, I should have just gotten pancit or nothing at all since the rice was terrible; mushy, the garlic burnt and bitter, and in dire need of seasoning.......
As you can see; it was pork adobo and sisig.
Once upon a time, Conching made one of my favorite versions of sisig, though it was terrible and disappointing the last time I had it. This version was good, not as good as the best I've had at Conching, but it was pretty close...it was still on the mushy side, but at least there was enough sour-salt-spice to make it enjoyable.
The adobo needed more vinegar and black pepper flavor and a ton less sodium as it was unpleasantly salty. In terms of texture it was fine, a couple of tough pieces, but adequately tender. It was just much too salty.....
I haven't been a real regular at Conching's over the years so I'm not sure if the cooks and staff are the same....based on the sisig, I'd venture that some if not most of the folks here are still the same Conching folks.
Anyway, there you have it....... RIP Conching.
Erlinda's Filipino Cuisine & Ice Cream Parlor 3400 E 8th St.Ste 115 National City, CA 91950