Merry Christmas!

DSCN8573Season’s greetings! Here is a photo of us from last year when we were still in school. Seems like ages ago. We wish you all a lovely holiday, a glorious new year, and more importantly…to have delicious foods to eat.

We hope you celebrate the real reason of Christmas too…Jesus! =p
Keep warm everyone.

Love,
Vic & Pinky (Pinctor)

Nov 2013 Favs {Thanksgiving Edition}

To be honest, we haven’t got the chance to visit many places this month because we had many family events to attend.  Therefore, we would just like to share some of our photos from Pinky’s family’s Thanksgiving food spread.  Don’t worry, Victor was also there!

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Pre-cooked stuffed mushrooms | Ribs
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Smoked Salmon stuffed with Sour Cream & Caviar | Salad with bacon pieces and Parmesan cheese | Dragonfruit pieces wrapped with Prosciutto bacon
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Garlic Bread with pieces of Foie Gras | Cooked Mushrooms stuffed with crab meat and cream cheese
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Cuttlefish pasta with clam and lobster sauce | Ribs | Grilled Scallops with cream cheese | Oven-roasted Turkey
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Closer shot of the stuffed mushrooms

Pinky says:

DSCN7066It’s true that this will be the rare post where you see so much featured seafood…This was definitely the one Thanksgiving where Victor and I did not eat that much.  Also, what wasn’t photographed was the steak that we quickly ate, since it was so delicious.  I have grown up to eat steak with bearnaise sauce.  For those of you who are not familiar it is a yellowish sauce that is made out of butter, egg yolks, white wine vinegar, and herbs.  I absolutely adore eggs, so it was no surprise that I literally want to drink (eew) it.

The dragonfruit prosciutto was strange for me, Victor liked it more than I did.  I thought the fruit was too mushy and I didn’t enjoy the sweet and salty.  BlEGH.

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bearnaise sauce for steak

I actually LOVE the cuttlefish pasta (over regular pasta), but this time I couldn’t eat much of it because there was clam sauce over it.  Before we would just have the cuttlefish pasta over some nice juicy steaks…I guess my dad didn’t care that I was allergic! haha =).

Thanksgiving is never about the food (right?), but about the family and conversations you have over the dinner table.   I would say that I am grateful to have family and friends around me, food in my stomach, as well as a roof over my head everyday.

Victor says:

Lobster pieces with fresh avocado
Lobster pieces with fresh avocado

So this year, I had the pleasure of visiting Pinky’s family this year for Thanksgiving. There was so many types of food and I felt like I was at a restaurant. There was lot I didn’t eat… because it was seafood. I thought the Dragon fruit wrapped with Prosciutto rather interesting. Its salty yet sweet. It’s hard to describe dragon fruit I guess. It’s texture is like a kiwi, but it’s not as sweet. The fruit itself is actually quite beautiful.

I also got try some lamb chops. I don’t really eat lamb too often, so it was sort of a new experience for me. I felt like it had a metallic taste to it. It was interesting, it didn’t really taste like the other red meats I’ve had before.  It looked like a steak… but not really… so I guess it just confused my taste buds. Lastly, I got to eat a REAL steak. Pinky’s family bought like 20+ steaks. I’ve never seen that much steak all at once. It was cooked to medium and it was absolutely delicious. There’s nothing better than a home-cooked meal.  If you readers didn’t know, steaks are my favorite!

Yet again, Thanksgiving isn’t just about the food. It should be more about spending time with family and friends as well as being grateful for what you have.

WE also thank all of our readers and followers on this blog!  Thank you for being loyal to us and thank you for reading our random food thoughts.  We hope your Thanksgiving was great and wish you even better experiences during the holidays season!

Three apple pies Pinky JUST made! Fresh out of the oven...
Three apple pies Pinky JUST made! Fresh out of the oven…

Happy Holidays, from us to you!

El Nuevo Portal

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Greetings, everyone! Apologies for not posting for a long while!  So far, October has been a fully packed month. Stay tuned for an update about our month…meanwhile, enjoy this post about El Nuevo Portal!

217 Smith Street
Brooklyn, NY 11231

Menu here

It’s not always that Victor and I explore around Brooklyn, but we wanted to check this small friendly restaurant called El Nuevo Portal.  It was one of our stops while we were visiting some local thrift shops and small boutiques.

El Nuevo serves some authentic looking Latin food at an affordable price and served with smiles!  You can see the interior design of this place, on Google Maps (Strange first experience for Victor and I).  Nothing spectacular to speak about the design since this should be for a quick casual lunch and less fancy dinner option.

Once you enter, you can simply take a seat if you see an open table.  You do not have to order at the front, unless of course, you are ordering for take-out.  They are pretty laid-back about everything here!   Restroom was near the back, right next to the old jukebox of old music..The place was not sparkly clean, but decent enough!

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Breaded Beef Steak Sandwich $4.00
Rice with Chicken $8.00
Rice with Chicken $8.00

 

Victor says 4/5 Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail

DSCN6306This restaurant is located in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn, and it’s a little over a mile walk from the Brooklyn Bridge.

We don’t always go out to the most beautiful and lavishly decorated restaurants, but that’s okay. As long as the food is good, I’m all set! So, on our latest adventure, we stopped El Nueva Portal (which translates to “The New Portal”). It was definitely a portal of food to my stomach.

Upon coming here, it may seem rather hectic, dependent on what time it is. We arrived just as lunch hour was coming to an end. We could still see people coming in and out, as we were seated and waiting for our food.

The menu has a large variety of food, ranging from sandwiches to tapas, rices dishes to stews. You should expect to have trouble selecting something when you come here.

I ordered Breaded Steak Sandwich and Pinky ordered Rice with Chicken, along with a complimentary basket of warm and crispy bread.  The breaded steak sandwich wasn’t dry at all and was very juicy. This sandwich is composed of a breaded piece of steak with lettuce and tomatoes sandwiched between crispy thin hero bread. For $4 dollars, it’s a tasty snack you grab on the go.

Pinky and I almost always get some sort of chicken and rice dish at any Spanish/ Latin American we go to. Different from the previous Latin restaurants we’ve been to, the chicken is actually mixed within the rice, whereas the previous restaurants put a piece of chicken on top. Regardless of how the chicken implemented into the dish, it still tasted excellent at El Neuvo Portal. They were very generous with their portions and this dish can easily feed two hungry people. The rice was very rich and buttery and there was actually a lot of chicken.

This place can get very busy at times, but it’s worth coming if you’re on a budget and if you’re hungry, even if it isn’t the nicest looking place.

Pinky says 4/5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg

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This restaurant was delicious!  First off, I would have to say that the staff were very hard-working.  Although there were more customers than the staff could seem to handle during the lunch rush, they still pulled it off with a smile.  Kudos to you, El Nuevo.  Because of that, there were not enough free tables that were clean, but our waitress apologized before we even had any thought of complaining.

I looked at the place and I wasn’t expecting fancy decor, but expected family-oriented atmosphere and completely received that vibe.  The portions were huge and hot off the fire.

The bread that the waitress gave us was fresh out of the oven it seemed, with lots of butter flavor.  More importantly, it was not soggy, but crisp to the bite.  Yummy!

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My Rice with Chicken arrived and was completely overwhelmed by the mountain I had on my plate.  My first thought, “Oh I cannot finish this”, and it was a true statement… The chicken was tender and I loved the onions.  I realized that it was listed on the menu as “Rice with Chicken” insinuating that there was definitely going to be more rice than chicken.  However, I was still not disappointed!  Hot and FRESH.

I enjoyed the breaded beef steak!  It was a nice new texture to explore on sandwiches.  At the end of our meal, I took a portion of the rice and a small bite of the sandwich,home, so I could eat it the next day.  Even still, the flavor kept and was equally nice to my taste buds.

When Victor and I left, I was peering over to our neighbor’s meal at the next table.  Dang, he ordered some kind of stew.  It smelled so good and we could tell that he was a regular there.  Next time, we shall try that!

MORE SHOTS

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Akropolis Greek Restaurant

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Complimentary chickpeas!

127 Smithtown Blvd
Ste 16
Nesconset, NY 11767

Hands down, one of the best Greek restaurants in Long Island. I’ve been here twice, and they do not disappoint. It’s not a very popular place, but it definitely worth the visit. It is inexpensive and they offer coupons on their website: www.akropolisrestaurant.com.

Just by walking into the restaurant, you get this very homey atmosphere.  Everyone just looks like  they are having a good time eating. I guess that’s the main goal of most restaurants though. This restaurant is at the end of a mall strip, so keep your eyes open!

Athenian Mushrooms – Mushrooms cooked in white wine and stuffed with spinach, feta and melted mozzarella, served with pita. $6.95

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Our GYROS! $7.95 each!
Our GYROS! $7.95 each!

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Victor says: 4.5/5 Great!!

One of my favorite places to go! The portions here are huge and the food is not too expensive. The staff is friendly and the atmosphere feels like its someone’s home. Above all, the food tastes great!

As a complimentary dish, they offer a bowl of chickpeas garnished with white onions and a basket of pita bread. Everything was relatively fresh and it seemed as if the pita bread just came out of the oven. I would advise you not to eat too much of it if you are here with one other, since it is very filling. There are many more things to try as well!

An appetizer I really enjoy is the Athenian Mushrooms. I would have to say these are the best mushrooms I have had to date. the mushrooms are cooked in a white wine with spinach and cheese on the top. Just one mushroom is extremely filling. What really makes this dish stand out is truly the taste of the mushroom. Just by taking one bite of this mushroom, you can taste the sweet and rich juices of the mushroom and having been cooked in the wine. I would definitely recommend checking this out!

I had a  beef and lamb gyro with yogurt sauce, but I don’t regret getting it. I know I probably should have tried something different, but oh well. This was the biggest gyro I ever had. I was already so full when it came out too. But nevertheless, it was still wonderfully delicious. There were more slices of meat than lettuce, and the meat was so juicy and tender. The meat was savory and it was seasoned well. Even though it just sounds like your average gyro, everything about this gyro just seemed to right.

Coming back here a second time, I ordered a gyro again, and I was still pleased with it. Maybe next time I will try something different. If you’re around Long Island, I would highly recommend coming here!

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Pinky says: 4.5/5

Okay, so you might be saying to yourself.  Pinky, you are quite crazy! Throwing all these high ratings  everywhere! BUT NO. Trust us this place…is so amazing. The complimentary chickpeas and pita bread were delicious already.  The chickpeas were in this sort of olive oil mixture with lemon juice I believe…  I have never had that kind of taste before!
We shared the Athenian Mushrooms and I LOVE spinach.  The food was so fresh and hot…the cheese was so much but sooo good.  My mouth is watering already…FETA AND MOZZ? What can go wrong here? The dish was a bit salty and sour, it was quite an interesting flavor.  I believe they put some wine in it.  Although there are only four knobs of mushrooms, this dish was already quite satisfying and filling.  And this was only the appetizer!

I just ordered a regular gyro.  I believe this was the first time Vic told me how to pronounce it correctly lol (EURO?) I never really ordered this much before because…i’ll tell you a secret.. I was too embarrassed to make a mistake of mispronouncing it LOL.  I made Vic order it this time :P.  As you may know, the gyro has lamb beef with lettuce, tomatoes, and onions.  THE THING WAS AS BIG AS MY FACE.  It was so filling that I had to bring it back home.  The first time we were here, I didn’t know that I could ask for extra yogurt sauce of no charge!  So if you’re taking the food home, make sure you ask! :]  You’ll be glad you did.  But hey, maybe you can finish the whole thing in one sitting :P…it’s delicious to finish it all either way!

IMAG1745IMAG1747 Some funny pics of how we were so surprised how much food they gave us! :]

Mama Meena’s Family Restaurant

94-20 Jamaica Ave
Woodhaven, NY 11421
Neighborhood: Richmond Hill

Decor was very calming but yet simple!  Felt like I was walking into someone’s family dining room.  The place doesn’t have a public bathroom and I don’t even think they have a real heater.  When we came in, the waitress seated us and moved the portable heater near us to keep us warm!  They have real flowers on the table and a lot of butterfly themed decorations.

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pork-filled rolls! $6
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Sliced Beef marinated in lemon and soy sauce sautéed in onions $8
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Chicken broth with scallions, boiled eggs, shredded chicken and soft noodles $6

Menu

ImagePinky says: Chicken Mami was not that salty.  It was also very filling with the chicken and lots of noodles for very cheap price!  Not overwhelmingly filled with flavor but it was perfect for a cold winter day. I loveeee boiled eggs so that was my favorite.  Filipino spin on chicken noodle soup!
Bistek Tagalog (other than me having trouble pronouncing the name) This dish was pretty satisfying! The beef was very lean and tender..almost like it melted in your mouth.
Lumpia Shanghai were very delicious.  Each very crispy and fresh not soggy or overly oiled.  With a side of sweet and sour chili sauce. So glad it was not the regular spring roll 🙂

Final Verdict: Must try if you have never had Filipino food (I haven’t had it before this)! 4/5

Image Victor says: The Lumpia Shanghai was quite the delight. It was crispy and savory and the chili sauce complimented it very well.  Not too oily either, which is a definite plus! In a matter of minutes, it was all gone.

I ordered the Bistek Tagalog and it was rather interesting. It was had a very distinct and strong taste, almost similar to that of Malaysian Rendang beef. The meat was soft and tender, but it had a lot of flavor. Nonetheless, it was certainly delicious.

The Chicken Mami looked like your regular Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup with an egg on top when I first saw it. Although it is better than it’s canned counter-part, I can’t say that this dish necessarily captured my taste buds. It’s definitely filling for its cheap price, but not very flavorful. The chicken in this noodle soup was tender and soup component of this dish was not too salty.

Final Verdict: Go! I never had or even know what filipino food is, but this was a good start! 4/5