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Feb 21, 2007 05:00 PM

In search of a few hard-to-find specialties

I've been dusting around the asian circuit in NYC for over two years now...and there are a few things that I still haven't been able to find. If anyone knows where I can find any of the following, I'd be REALLY, REALLY happy! (Would love a good recommendation or two):

Double skin (double boiled) milk
Durian Juice (couldn't find it at Bonobos)
Tang Yuan
Cheng Tng
Onde Onde Kueh
Chee Cheong Fun
Sri Lanka Falooda
Anything with Kaya

Okay, I know I'm asking for alot...! :) But this is what happens when one's tastes get, um, a little esoteric...!

Best and thanks,

--Janet (GG)

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  1. Have you already been to the Thai supermarket near Columbus Park/off Mott in Chinatown? Or the Hong Kong Supermarket? It might be helpful to know where you have already looked.

    1. From what I read, I think you are looking for local Singaporea/Malaysian specialties. Sadly to say, most of the good stuff I've had came from people making them! Most places that serve satay don't serve it with ketupat. Chee cheong fan here is slightly different, are you talking about the one with the sweet sauvce? I have had it a few times from vendors on the street in chinatown. Sorry have never seen durian juice. No one I know makes any sort of nonya kueh or cheng tng. As for kaya, I would just get a good recipe and make it myself. Sorry!

      1. Jing Fong serves kaya buns on weekends, but you can't always get them. Your best bet is to sit near the exit from the kitchen.

        Where have you already looked?

        2 Replies
        1. re: Pan

          Pan, good to hear from you. (And hello to everyone else!)

          Hard to say where I've looked - I've been around Chinatown on a regular basis..and have visited Jing Fong. (Wasn't searching for kaya buns at the time, so perhaps they just got overlooked. ) I'm kind of wondering if the Thai grocery store (on Mulberry?) might be a good way to get a taste of that...

          Re: Ketupat, I've been to several locations - and was able to find a somewhat close substitution with Longtong at Upi Jaya.

          Re: Chee Cheong Fan - I'd love to find it with the sweet sauce - and wouldn't be surprised if this turns out to be the easiest score on my list.

          Re: items like ginger hit milk - I've checked out the restaurant once known as Healthy Desserts (on the western edge of Chinatown) - but they tend to have other tong sui items, like sago, fruit and birds nest....

          Love to hear any recommendations....the obvious food has been sampled, now I have to get down to the more esoteric stuff! :)

          1. re: gaijingirl

            I think you may be best off making your own ketupat. It's best fresh, anyway.

            You should try the Thai store on Mosco, Udom's on Bayard, and the store on Mulberry between Bayard and Canal that you're thinking of (I thought they were Vietnamese, but someone corrected me).

            I actually don't know some of the items you're looking for!

            Did you try searching for Onde-Onde at Sanur?

        2. Durian's a new one...
          You can get close with Durian Ice Cream though at the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory.

          1. Hi, I have had / seen a few of the items you listed in some restaurants:

            Double skin (double boiled) milk - XO Kitchen has it. They also have double boiled egg custard. Sweet and Tart (closed now) used to have it so you should find it in their Flushing location

            Durian Juice (couldn't find it at Bonobos) - I have had Durian Smoothie at Doyers Vietnamese Restaurant. IT WAS DELICIOUS!!!! But it was about 2, 3 years ago so I am not sure if they still have it. It is still on their menu (according to menupage). The restaurant is on Doyers Street and it is downstairs. Other food is decent but there are better vietnamese restaurants in Chinatown.

            Tang Yuan - Again, XO kitchen has it with different tong shiu, and another place is Ren Ren on Bayard. That place looks very old but has a lot of old-fashioned desserts. My mom orders their Tang Yuan all the time!

            Chee Cheong Fun - 6 Chatham Square Restaurant has it for Dim Sum time. They labeled it as "Plain Cheong Fun" (and there is another one which is the plain with dried shrimp), so I think it should be Chee Cheong Fun. I never ordered it so I am not sure whether they serve it the traditional way (with hoisin and peanut sauce).

            As for Cheng Tng, Onde Onde, Ketupat, Falooda, and Kaya, there are two small grocery stores that may carry them. One is in the middle of Bayard, and it is REALLY TINY and very easy to miss out (I think its name starts with "Indo" something, but I might be wrong). It carries tons of Southeast Asian food and have some homemade desserts at the counter. They may also have the uncooked ingredients available so you can cook at home. The other store (again really tiny) is at the end of Pell street. It sells mainly cooked food and appetizers, so it may have some of the items that you are looking for.

            That's about all I know. Sorry couldn't be more helpful. If I happen to see them I will repost again.

            1 Reply
            1. re: kobetobiko

              "One is in the middle of Bayard, and it is REALLY TINY and very easy to miss out (I think its name starts with `Indo' something, but I might be wrong)."

              The aforementioned Udom's Thai-Indonesian store.