I recently had the pleasure of previewing the new menu from George Landin’s Corona Diner. Landin opened the diner—a love letter to Queens whose decor features references to nearby Flushing Meadows Corona Park and a mural with a who’s who of Queens luminaries from Malcolm X and Louis Armstrong to Action Bronson and LL Cool J. Landin’s new menu is also a love letter to the diversity of Queens with items like a Mexican-inspired elote hot dog and an Ecuadorean ceviche.
It also features a roster of decadent hamburgers like one topped with mac and cheese and crumbled bacon and another whose buns are grilled cheese sandwiches. Those were all quite tasty, but my favorite item of the night was a somewhat more restrained number called the dia despues.(more…)
Many guests on my food tours of America’s Greatest Chinatown—aka downtown Flushing—have had soup dumplings. Xiao long bao virgins get a quick tutorial. Since the wrappers at my favorite spot in New York Food Court are super thin, I encourage people to avoid using chopsticks and gingerly pick up the package from the top with their fingers and place it on the spoon.
They may or may not choose to cool their dumpling in the accompanying black vinegar, but the next step is always the same: “Bite a tiny hole in the side like a vampire and slurp the soup out.”
Front: hot green peppers (called mirch in Hindi and Urdu). Back: ground red pepper.
Welcome to the third installment of C+M’s ongoing series of audio guides on how to order authentically spicy food in ethnic restaurants.
As a service to C+M readers I’m compiling a series of audio guides demonstrating phrases in several relevant languages, which can be used to navigate ordering situations fraught with tricky cultural and language barriers.
If (like me) you’ve ever tried to order a spicy dish in a restaurant and been refused (or served a clearly less spicy version), this series of audio features is for you. (more…)