Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Tonight's Dinner: January 21, 2014

Tonight I headed to the library to pick up some new books for the reading challenge that my girlfriends and I have embarked on.  I’ve committed to reading 24 books in the year 2014.  One of the girls committed to 50!  That’s about a book a week!  I don’t read fast enough to do that, nor do I want to feel like I’m back in college.  I’ve checked off two books from my tally so far.  If I keep up this momentum I may be able to exceed my 2014 goal.  I’ve also rediscovered the charm of libraries.  Things have changed so much since I was a kid.  Everything is computerized and clean.  I remember when libraries had dingy, dog-earred books that I hated touching. I do still think about the germs that are on the books I check out when I get in bed to read, but I ignore them.  I think I may be too clean as it is and my immune system can’t keep up with the world.  What astounded me the most was when I went to return some books.  Emmy and I had walked to our closest library over the weekend.  I was looking for the big mailbox-like drop off box like they had in the old days.  I then saw a man walk up to the building wall and push a button that made a small door open up to reveal a conveyor belt where he put his books to have them transported inside.  The conveyor belt is weight censored and knows when the books have been placed down. What in the world?  Was I transported to the land of the Jetsons? Conveyor belts for book drop off?  I really need to get out more.

After running around the library looking for the books that I wanted, Nick and I headed to Dublin to have dinner at the Koi Palace out there.  We had recently gone to the location in Daly City, but Dublin is closer and has more parking.  We were celebrating an early Chinese New Year as we won’t be able to celebrate next week when the actual day is here.  For the occasion we ordered a suckling pig.  It seems that we find any reason to order one of these little guys.  I try not to think of how cute they are when they are alive because they are so darn delicious.  What we thought was a little strange about their prefixed menu was that some of the dishes were not very Chinese at all.  The beef dish that was served was blatantly an American barbecue sauce and the lobster noodles looked like they had tarragon mixed in and were rather creamy.  Chinese cooking rarely requires dairy.  The food was pretty good, but it was a little bit strange for a Chinese place.  We chalked it up as Chinese fusion.

You can tell the size of the piglet compared to Nick's phone.

Not sure what these are called.  They're something new to
us.  It was a piece of fish in a light batter that was fried. 

Trumpet mushrooms over what tasted like Napa cabbage.

This is the bbq beef.  We joked that they bought Kinder's sauce, but it did
kind of taste like Kinder's. 

Bird's nest soup.  The stuff on top is a fungus but if you look closely, the light
jelly colored small clumps are the bird's nest.  This is another soup that I tend to boycott
because when the nests are harvested the eggs fall out and people die trying to
get the nests out of the caves.  I didn't want to be rude so I ate it anyway.
The bird's nest is edible because it's made up of Swift saliva. 

Silkie (black chicken)

After we ate all of the crispy skin off, they took away our
pig and chopped it up.

Abalone, mustard greens, and get this, fish stomach!  Chinese really do eat
everything.  I had to try it since it is apparently pretty expensive.  It's a little
bit chewy and doesn't have much flavor.  My cousin made a comment that it
tasted dirty. 

Lobster noodles. 

This fish was pretty giant. 

All that was left after we got through it was its tail and two
gumball sized eyes.

Mango pudding and date jello with condensed milk for the mango pudding.

They served us a light sponge cake also.  I really liked this and had almost
four pieces.  I need to learn how to make it. 

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