Annie made this Teochew Porridge, perfect for a cold, rainy day.
Plain rice porridge, but the side dishes are stir-fried cabbage, fried pomfret in brown sauce, and omelette with shallots. The item in the spoon at the top of the pic is fermented tofu in chili oil. Mix it all in and it gives a tangy, spicy flavor to the dish.
Ramen Halu on Saratoga Ave in west San Jose was recommended to us as the best place for ramen in the South Bay (which isn’t saying much because there aren’t that many good ramen places here). We showed up a little before 6 and there was a long line in front of the shop. Their website says they open at 5 but the sign in the window said 6. Oh well.
Annie ordered the house special Halu ramen, which is a thick, rich broth paired with thick noodles. I got the classic shoyu ramen which is a thinner broth and thinner noodles. Both noodles had a nice, springy chew to them. My bowl came with “the Works” which includes bamboo shoots, corn, wood ear fungus, cabbage, almost-hard boiled egg, green onions, chashu roast pork, and a couple sheets of nori.
My bowl came to $13 which is a bit steep for a bowl of ramen. I think I prefer the Tokushima Do-Henkotsu a little farther south on Saratoga, next to Mitsuwa. And Tokushima Do-Henkotsu takes credit cards, whereas Ramen Halu is cash-only.
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Our friend Bea introduced us to this savory baked tofu, which is a very firm tofu that is flavored with soy and star anise. It smells kind of like tea eggs. The texture is similar to portabella mushrooms. We sliced it up and stir fried it with onions, chicken, and julienned carrots. Flavored with oyster sauce, soy sauce, sugar, salt and pepper. Very easy to make, and very tasty as well!
Smoked these pork spareribs for over 4 hours in my Weber Smoky Mountain bullet smoker using lump mesquite charcoal and apple wood chips for smoke. There are three, half-slabs on this plate. The middle and right slabs were rubbed with kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, white sugar, and granulated garlic right before going in the smoker. The darker slab on the left also got an application of some secret spice rub from an acquaintance of mine.
I do believe these were one of my better batches of ribs.