Archive for February 5th, 2010

Nian Gao [年糕]

Next weekend is the Lunar New Year, and that was my excuse for making this nian gao/dduk/mochi (年糕, 떡, もち) again.  This time, it came out nearly perfect!

The Chinese language is fascinating…I had picked out the characters for “sticky cake” (粘糕) which IS nian gao, to use in the title, only to have my mom point out that those weren’t the right ones.  You see, the reason nian gao is so popular around Lunar New Year is because the words are a homonym for “higher year.” So while I wasn’t wrong per se,  the characters actually used for nian gao mean “year cake” instead of “sticky cake.”

This pan of nian gao was cut into about 5 minutes after being removed from the oven, and the above picture was taken only 10 minutes after that.  What can I say, we couldn’t resist! My mom and I love the browned edges, and my brother and dad prefer the gooey middle.

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Nobu New York

Pooh and I had to give up our Perry Street reservations due to my calendar dyslexia, thinking a friend’s shower is on Saturday when it is actually on Sunday.  We were very sad about not enjoying another Restaurant Week meal before the promotion ended.  But, Pooh did some lurking on yesterday and got us last-minute lunch reservations at Nobu!  Someone must have just canceled because they were all booked up.  He works in the FiDi and was able to escape for an hour (or two, hehe) to enjoy really good Japanese food.

We went to the original Nobu (on Hudson).  There are two other locations in NYC, Nobu Next Door and Nobu Fifty-Seventh.

Rock Shrimp Tempura with Creamy Spicy Sauce

Black Miso Cod
(I was so hungry, I took a bite of this and then realized I hadn’t yet taken a picture!)

Assorted Sushi

Soy Cheesecake with Pear Compote

Pooh’s coworker had advised him to get the Rock Shrimp Tempura and not the other appetizers.  Which were a sashimi salad and a mushroom salad.  I am usually adamant about ordering different things to try, but in this case the two other choices seemed pretty ordinary, so shrimp it was for both of us.  Out of the three entrée choices, I knew I wanted the Black Miso Cod, which is pretty well-known as a Nobu dish.  It would be a shame to eat at Nobu and not have the raw fish, so Pooh got the Assorted Sushi plate.  The other entrée we didn’t order was Beef with Anti-Cucho or Teriyaki Sauce.  Yeah, I have no idea what anti-cucho is.

I loved it all and am excited we got to knock another NYC dining institution off our list!!  As I was writing this post, I checked the pictures I took of the menu…wow, the Black Miso Cod is normally $25 alone!  Maybe the portion sizes are different when it’s not prix-fixe, but regardless, the 3-course $24.50 Restaurant Week Menu was a steal!