Who does traditional Asian hot pots?
Can anyone recommend a good place to get traditional Chinese, Mongolian, Thai, or Korean hot pots? I'm looking for the group hot pot, where everyone cooks their choice of raw foods in a shared pot of broth (fondue style), not the one-bowl soup dishes also sometimes called hotpots.
People's Cafeteria on Edinboro St. in Boston's Chinatown has traditional Chinese (Mongolian) hot pots. The meat, seafood,and vegetables are presented raw around a pot of boiling water. Different and fun.
It's not on the menu, you have to ask for it.
I've heard very good things about King Fung Garden's Mongolian hot pot, but I've never tried it.
The place looks like a dump and kept me from going in for a year or so. About a 2 months ago I finally braved it and had a very good meal. The pork belly with lotus flowers was very good, if a little surprising. The menu said pork, not pork belly, so I didn't expect to see what was essentially strips of bacon in the dish. The Shanghai noodle soup was excellent. I would not be surprises if the restaurant made the noodles and the stock was definitely NOT out of a can.
In short, King Fung Garden's menu is not the run of the mill Chinese offering you see in the majority of Chinese restaurants. I'm looking forward to going back and trying the rest of the menu.
re: Jonny Quest
I haven't tried the hot pots at King Fung garden but since the place was mentioned I feel duty bound to mention the shining star of the King Fung menu -- Peking Duck. This, my friends, is IMHO (if you find better I'd love to try it) unequivocally, hands down, nonpareil, full stop, the best Peking Duck in Boston.
King Fung's Peking Duck is a traditional multi-course affair that must be ordered 24 hours in advance. As of 2 months ago it was 28.00 for one prepared duck which can feed 3 or 4 people. As for the meal, it is presented thus:
Pre-Course: Waitress comes out and shows the duck, head still attached and in a pre-deconstructed form, to the table for approval.
Course The First: This is what most restaurants serve as Peking Duck. Crispy duck skin (and some with attached flesh) is presented with pancakes, sauce, and scallions. The skin is super crispy and full of taste and the sweet sauce cauts its rich flavor in the pancake wonderfully.
Course The Second: Stir Fried duck meat. Duck flesh is stir fried with sauce and vegetables. The leading vegetable in this dish is bean sprout which is a wise choice since the focus of the meal is duck and bean sprouts provide crunch, texture, and a subtle flavor without diminishing the role of the duck meat. The star of this course, however, is the sauce. It's a simple sauce but its flavor enhances and amplifies the stir fried duck with bean sprouts absolutely brilliantly. This is almost marriage-endingly good food. Fortunately for couples the cooks never surface from the bowels of the place to be adored and revered.
Course The Third: Think duck broth with bean thread noodles, duck meat and bone, and tofu. Homemade duck broth. This is why you ordered the dish 24 hours in advance -- to give the cook plenty of time to boil the flavor out of duck bones to absolutely suffuse your broth with the unmistakable, inimitable essence of duck. This dish rocks. The meal-ending soup is refreshing, lovely, and unique (at least of you're used to eating in the US I suppose).
One duck can feed four but I'd recommend ordering a vegetable dish as well (perhaps the sauteed chinese brocolli or the black mushroom and vegetables) and maybe splitting a scallion pie or some steamed pork buns as an appetizer to get the juices flowing a bit before getting really stuck into the duck festival about to descend upon you.
Anyway, if you know of better or other noteworthy duck in the Boston area please do let me know as I'm always interested in consuming said waterfowl.
have a nice one,