Some Like it Hot
Another food filled week ends on a spicy note.
If you are a chilehead like me, time and time again you order something spicy (or even request that something be made spicy) and it taste like it was made for the biggest, whitest gringo on earth. I think that only twice in my culinary history have I gotten something that I ordered spicy that was actually spicy.
I met Hiking Gourmet T, My Doppelganger, and Sassy C at Chung King which has recently moved from Monterey Park to San Gabriel. I had not been to Chung King for many many years for the following reasons: 1. Last time I was there what we ordered wasn't very spicy; and 2. At the same meal I could see into the kitchen and I saw that the guy who was peeling the cucumbers was picking his nose big time (he saw the horrid expression on my face and just shrugged his shoulders.)
But after Guru Gold's glowing review in the LA Weekly I decide to give it another chance - besides might the nose picker be gone by now? Anyhoo, Guru Gold said the food was really spicy and I got the call of the chilepepper...
We started off with two cold plates from their little cold buffet (Nota Bene: we did not get any cucumber! Someone wanted to get it but I butted in and said, "how about the spicy cabbage" to the waitress): spicy cold sliced beef, stewed peanuts (stayed away from those - migraineville) with fried smelts, celery salad, chopped long bean salad with chiles and ground fish, said spicy cabbage, and seaweed salad.
For entrees we ordered wontons with spicy broth, chicken with cold chili sauce, fried spareribs with prickly ash, and the non-spicy chicken with puffed rice. The hottest dish was the chicken which got that endorphine high going right away (though the dish was garnish with beaucoup peanuts so I had to take an Allegra in order to keep the migraines at bay.) The chicken was so hot that it made the spareribs seem very mild and in turn the wontons seemed down right cooling (both of those dishes were very hot but I started off with the hottest and then worked my way down the Scoville scale.) The saucy sauteed chicken with the puffed rice was the only thing that would cool my mouth - worked better than the Coke.
$14 per person including tax and gratuity and free parking!