[yiddish] To eat like an animal, i.e., quickly, noisily, and in great quantity.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Golden Mall: A recap of our first adventure

First there was buzz on and I knew I had to get there, then in the Village Voice, and by the time it got in the New York Times I had to head over before things got tainted, gringofied, or had a red hook or DOH situation and got shut down completely.
It was a family outing to the Golden Mall and we were so pumped for an adventure. Down the stairs and into a maze of food stalls we went, nary a white person in sight.
The first stall we went to was number 36, Xi'an snacks for the cold noodles and lamb burger. Articles about this stall mentioned the Muslim influence in this province of China that definitely shows itself in the food. Specifically, the cumin in the lamb burgers is a hint at this fusion. These ground lamb sandwiches are spicy and flavorful and really cheap. As much as the lamb makes this trip worth taking- the liang pi cold noodles are incredibly addicting with a unique flavor coming from the chili oil and special vinegar. The texture of the noodles is also great. Its really saucy and messy; its hard not to make a mess.
Next door to this stall on the right is a stand that I do not believe has a number (I asked a lady working there what number stall it was for identification purposes and she proceeded to write down her cell phone number for me)
You can watch the different steps in their dumpling making process- there is one gappy toothed guy who stuffs the dumplings and is so smiley you can't help but smile back. So these dumplings are 8 for $2 and stuffed with pork and chives. They are damn good. Put some chili oil and hot sauce from the tables and they are perfection. On another trip there I bought a frozen pack of 60 for $10, I am sure I will love them.
A good thing to know is that there is a dude who sells beer outside the mall. A lot of these spicy foods go perfectly with a cold beer. And there is no problem with drinking in the stalls, many do that anyway.
Since it was a hot summer day we skipped a lot of the delicious looking hot pot or homemade noodles soup stalls.
We got the dan dan noodles at the Chengdu Heaven stalls- the first one on your left when you walk in. The noodles had quite a kick and a great flavor. My parents ventured to eat the mixed meat cold salad, but it was a little too offaly for me. The people at this stall really do not speak English at all. recommended bringing a Spicy & Tasty menu to the stall to show them what you want.
Back outside the mall and a few doors down is another smaller mall with food stalls. One stall serves bing (savory stuffed fried thing) and giant dumpling things that are convenient, cheap, and great tasting.
So, in conclusion, its a great adventure and food experience. We are now regulars. The liang pi noodles in particular rocked my world, the to-go version comes with the sauce separate to avoid sogginess. I am a big Flushing fan and would recommend to anyone to take the trek over there.

41-28 Main Street

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