Half-Cheating: Frozen Dumpling Soup

I love dumplings. Potstickers, ravioli, pierogies, anything of the like. When I studied in Ecuador, one of the first things our adviser warned against was eating street food.  That admonition lasted exactly as long as the time it took for me to discover that a freshly made roadside cheese empanada cost 25 cents. In college, while others were eating grilled cheese, Ramen noodles (not the good kind) or worse, my roommate Renee and I were dipping strawberry pierogies in sour cream mixed with sugar.  A first-generation American, Renee (aka Renata) had grown up on this particular brand of awesomeness, with her Polish mother expending her culinary energy on to-die-for breaded porkchops.

Considering my love of filled foods, I was quite excited to see a sampling of CJ Foods dumplings on my porch upon arriving home one day.  A few days later, upon spying my new treasures in the freezer, my husband decided to cook up a bag.  Like me, he’s not really one for reading directions, and he dumped the contents of the bag into a pot of boiling water.  Please don’t try this at home.  I say this not for your sake, but for the sake of the dumplings.  Or if you do, don’t then boil the dumplings for 8 minutes.  The whole point of these is that they are already cooked.

The result of letting my husband take the reins was quite un-dumpling-like.  Imagine wontons without filling, disintegrating meatballs and, upon cooling, one giant sticky mess.  Posting a picture of this madness seemed unfair considering that it was our fault, not the dumplings’. Fortunately, we had another flavor to try, so don’t worry, this near Friday-you-know-what has a happy ending.

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The Endless Road Trip — Philadelphia’s Top 10 Eats 2. Soup Dumpling Surprise

When I picture Philadelphia, a smattering of obvious things come to mind: cheesesteaks, the Liberty Bell, Rocky Balboa, Ben Franklin…pretty standard. What I never imagined was that Philly would have amazing Chinese food. I do not say this lightly, as I come from a city teeming with authentic Asian cuisine. In Seattle, you can throw a rock and hit a Thai place, a Chinese place, or a Japanese place (realistically, probably all three). So when I heard that Philly”s Chinatown was supposed to house some of the city”s best hidden dining gems, I was eager to check it out.

Enter Dim Sum Garden, a hole-in-the-wall restaurant on the edge of Chinatown, near the bus tunnel. Not very appealing from the outside, but as I have said time and time and time again, some of the best restaurants have the shabbiest exteriors. The interior doesn”t exactly scream “gourmet experience” either — the ambiance is music-less and fluorescent-lit. Not a problem, because we weren”t visiting for fancy atmosphere. No, we were at Dim Sum Garden for one main reason: soup dumplings!

Now just to be clear, a soup dumpling is not some confused way of saying dumpling soup. No, this is exactly what it sounds like: a dumpling, with soup inside. It”s basically like eating dumpling soup, but inverted; outside it”s just an innocent dumpling, but inside is piping hot liquid! Eating these special dumplings requires a special process. It”s not enough to simply pop the whole thing in your mouth, you must employ a multi-step system to fully appreciate the components of the soup dumpling.

Luckily for all, we knew what had to be casino online done: an instructional video! No soup dumpling left behind:

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Nachos Gone Wild!

With football season kicking into high gear, it’s about time for some serious snack talk. But you know us ES-ers aren’t gonna just crack open some Tostitos spicy cheese dip and call it a day. These 10 recipes are taking nachos to a whole new level.

1. Greek Nachos

Pita chips, ground lamb, and tzatziki stand in for the usual Mexican ingredients in this inventive Mediterranean take on Nachos.

Greek nachos recipe from elly says opa!

2. Chimichurri Nachos

It’s Argentina’s turn to get creative, topping their nachos with grilled steak and the country’s signature cilantro sauce.

Chimichurri nachos recipe from The Girl Who Ate Everything.

3. Totchos

Yes, that’s tater tot nachos, and really, can anyone argue nachos wouldn’t be better when you replace the chips with crispy fried potatoes?

Tater tot nacho recipe from Riley J. Briggs.

4. Pasta Nachos

At San Francisco Italian restaurant Puccini and Pinetti, wonton wrappers serve as the base for Italian nachos topped with marinara sauce, fresh mozzarella and basil.

Recipe for pasta nachos.

5. Grilled Nachos

Once again proving that any food that tastes good tastes even better cooked over a grill.

Grilled nachos recipe from Jenn’s Food Journey.

Next: Potato chip nachos, dessert nachos and more

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Do or Dine: Dumpling Nachos

We thought we’d found the limits of nacho creativity when we told you about wonton wrapper nachos, but then the chefs at Brooklyn’s new Do or Dine had to go and make dumpling nachos. Yep, their “Nippon nachos” are basically nachos made with dumplings instead of tortilla chips. Not dumpling wrappers—entire dumplings. Deep-fried pork dumplings are topped with melted cheddar, sour cream, salsa and scallions.

Game on, ESers — what’s the craziest food you can turn into a nacho? Eggs Benedict nachos? Foie gras nachos? Steak tartare nachos? I honesty can’t think of anything I wouldn’t want to eat in nacho form (And big up to Lorie Marsh, who has already written in with her amazing chili cheese nachos. Thanks, Lorie!)

A little more about the awesomely named Do or Dine: two front-of-house workers at Manhattan’s fancy-pants restaurant The Modern branched out to Bed-Stuy with one of the most creative high-end/lowbrow menus we’ve seen yet. They also officially win our search for America’s most creative deviled egg with this:

 

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New Food Words in the Dictionary

(Photo: Leo Reynolds)

OMG, did you hear? The Oxford English Dictionary has revised its latest edition to include new “words” such as FYI, BFF and LOL. Yes, let’s all take a moment and ROFL at that for a moment. What you might not know is the esteemed book also included some new food words. Some of them are under-the-radar food phrases, while many are probably already in your daily vernacular, which makes me wonder why they weren’t already in the dictionary, I mean WTF.

Keep reading to see some of our favorite food terms that are now officially legit, in alphabetical order.

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Feed US Back: Comments of the Week

snow

Jenna is on the “respect vanilla” train:

Awhile ago I made vanilla ice cream with a Tahitian vanilla bean and it was A-mazing. Like, vanilla does get a bad rap; people call it “boring” or unimaginative. But when you have the real stuff you realize that it’s this incredibly complex, nuanced, subtle fascinating flavor. We should give vanilla more respect.

– The cottage cheese chronicles never end. Nicky:

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