Huge Feast at Sichuan Gourmet - Framingham
Last night 11 of us went to Sichuan Gourmet in Framingham. None of us had been before. We found everything to be very fresh and tasty. We were expecting many of the dishes to be spicer but most of us are not the norm and like things REALLY hot. Some added chili sauce did the trick. We had a few with us who were a bit less adventurous so we got a few "americanized" type things too.
Here is what we got:
Hot and Sour Soup - Different then most, more of a chili oil/vinagar taste.
Apps: Crab Rangoon, Scallion Pancake, Peking Ravioli, Chengdu Spicy Dumplings, Dan Dan Noodles, Sichuan Cold Noodles.
My fav was the dan dan noodles, very tasty. The chengdu dumplings were good too but a bit light on the filling.
Tangerine Jumbo shrimp, - Very nice.
Scallops with black pepper sauce, - Nice big sea scallops cooked perfect.
Fresh whole fish with Sichuan chili bean sauce, - mmmmm
Cumin Flavored dry beef w/ chili sauce, - Very interesting/ nice!
Smoky hot shredded chicken w/ Cayenne, - Very good dish.
General Tso's Chicken,
Chicken w/ cashews - hot,
Beef Lo Mein,
Chicken Pan fried noodles, - Good but I like the cantonese versions better.
Tea smokey flavored duck, - Nice size dish, interesting but sort of boring.
Chengdu Hot pot style beef. - Very tasty- hotest dish we got.
Sesame Sweet potato cakes. - We thought these needed sugar or something to make them sweeter but they were good.
Photos to follow soon on my blog http://dimsumtimes.blogspot.com
(The poster formally known as jb)
The Cumin Flavored dry beef w/ chili sauce is one of my favorite dishes there; I've smoked some ribs at home with a dry rub I based on that flavor. I agree the duck is a little boring. If you like dishes with heat, try the Jin Giu (sp?) fish. The fish itself is mild but the broth is fiery.
Sounds like a great chow! When we were there my favorite was the twice-cooked pork which they do with smoked pork belly. Very tasty.
I agree that the food isn't nearly spicy enough.
Do they use Sichuan peppercorns (hua jiao) in their food? This is a spice that causes an interesting numbing sensation and is used frequently in "real" Sichuan food. It was a real surprise when I visited China (at first I thought I was having an allergic reaction to something). Looking for places that use it here. You **can** buy them at Chinese supermarkets around here if you know what to look for.
re: Sgt Snackers
They do. There was a fish dish they had as a special around Chinese New Year that had a ton of Sichuan peppercorns. The Sichuan Gourmet in Billerica uses Sichuan peppercorns in Xiang La Fish Fillet (not sure if Framingham has the same dish but if they do I imagine it would have the peppercorns as well).
Our favorite dish at Billerica is JinGu Fish Fillet. Haven't tried it at Framingham yet; in Billerica we ask for it with extra chilis and that way it is spicy enough.
Now that Sichuan Peppercorns are once again legal to import, I've been finding them more regularly at all of my favorite Sichuan restaurants, including Sichuan Gourmet.
That link didn't work for me - had to search for "dimsumtimes" on Blogspot, and found this link:
Great pictures - I especially liked the black bars (what my sister always called the "Glamour Don't" bars!) across the participants' eyes so you can't tell who they are. :-)
Interesting. It is because i edited the first line of the blog with the "not dim sum" part. Guess that changes the link. I changed my post to show just the top page.
Yea the black bars have been a running joke with us since the start!