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ISO Mongolian speaker to translate Pizza-Rama menu (Oakland)

daveena Aug 4, 2007 10:37 AM

I posted an initial report on this Mongolian restaurant/pizzeria in the "Strange, weird or hidden places to eat in the East Bay" thread:
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/39702...

While I was waiting for the food to come out, I wrote down most of the Mongolian menu (I skipped over most of column one, as I was told it was "all soup", but now I've read up a little on Mongolian soups, I may go back and copy the rest of it down.) Spent some time on Google trying to figure out the menu - have a couple of items translated, but wanted to see if there's anyone out there who can help translate the rest.

figured out so far:

guriltai shul - noodle soup with meat and noodle strips
khuushuur - fried meat dumpling
buuz - steamed dumpling
bansh - boiled dumpling
manti buuz - dumpling with yeasted dough wrapper (I'm picturing something like char siu bao
)budaatai khuurga - stew with rice, veg, meat
goulash - you guys know goulash

I think khuurga means meat, and budaa means stew.

I didn't copy far enough down on the soup list, but they probably have bantan (soup with meat and dough crumbs)

So here's the part of the menu I copied and couldn't figure out - one caveat - I just realized that the symbol representing the "g" sound looks a lot like the symbol representing "t", so my transliterations may be off.

chupvan
puntuuztzee khuurga
narnee maksan khuurga
chochgnegei bansh
tomcnee khuchmal
ondogtsee bnooteic
uzzngei budaa

-----
Pizza-Rama
138 14th St, Oakland, CA 94612

  1. Robert Lauriston Aug 4, 2007 10:46 AM

    This might help:

    http://www.mongolfood.info/en/recipes/

    3 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston
      Robert Lauriston Aug 5, 2007 09:44 AM

      Tried this place for lunch yesterday. The noodles were interesting, different flavor and texture than I've had elsewhere, came with a nice wilted cabbage salad.

      The dumplings had really thick wrappers around a sort of meatball, ended up eating less than half the wrapper. The meat was good, slightly gamy like maybe mutton. Fairly similar to some of the momos I've had at the Tibetan Fair.

      The meat pies were huge, the dough was twice the size of the thin meat patty inside. Liked this better than the dumplings, but Cafe Tibet does a similar thing that's much better.

      Everythinng was bland, needed sriracha. What an odd assortment of condiments--sriracha, soy sauce, Maggi, A1, garlic powder.

      We also tried some of the packaged snacks from Siberia, which turned out to be rye croutons with various flavors.

      Strange place. Serious communication problems. Even though we were the only customers it took almost half an hour for our food to come out. Steady stream of Mongolians stopping by to pick up to-go orders that appeared to have been ready before we got there. Seens like it's something of a community center, there's a bulletin board with notices all in Monglian, including a flyer for a Mongolian band's performance at Kimball's Carnival.

      1. re: Robert Lauriston
        daveena Aug 5, 2007 10:09 PM

        Thanks for the report - looks like I won't be in any great rush to go back - I think I'll wait until I have more menu items translated. Were the dumpling wrappers flour and water, or were they a raised dough?

        I've heard that almost the entire Mongolian population of the Bay Area lives in one of two buildings on Oak Street, so the restaurant's in a good place to serve as a community center - the original blog post that alerted me to this was from a few years ago, and described it as hidden behind an anonymous storefront. I wonder why they bothered adding any Western items to the menu at all, and making it appear to be open to a wider clientele... I saw a couple of people come into pick up orders as well. Since the main employee/cook speaks barely any English, and they don't have any take out menus out, this is probably not an option if you don't speak Mongolian.

        1. re: daveena
          Robert Lauriston Aug 6, 2007 10:55 AM

          They had takeout menus the other day.

          Not sure about the wrappers. I saw her making them and it looked like it might have been a raised dough. It was similar to the Hunan's meat pie.

    2. Ruth Lafler Aug 5, 2007 10:06 AM

      Good find! I think authentic Mongolian definitely qualifies as "strange."

      For general questions about the cuisine and what things on the menu might be, you might want to post it on the general topics board -- someone on chowhound in undoubtedly an expert on Mongolian cuisine!

      4 Replies
      1. re: Ruth Lafler
        Gary Soup Aug 5, 2007 11:15 AM

        Not me, but here's a starting point for you, Ruth...

        http://web.archive.org/web/2005020915...

        1. re: Ruth Lafler
          daveena Aug 5, 2007 10:12 PM

          Thanks Ruth - I thnk I'll do that.

          Thanks for the link Gary - I scanned it, but didn't see any of the terms I'm missing. The link that Robert gave above is the most useful site I've seen so far... the vast majority of hits when you Google "Mongolian food" are for sites with 15 "Mongolian beef" recipes.

          1. re: Ruth Lafler
            daveena Aug 7, 2007 12:58 PM

            Amazing - it took under two days to get a full translation.

            http://www.chowhound.com/topics/428295

            My missing menu items:
            chupvan - tsuivan - fried noodle dish
            puntuuztzee khuurga - glass noodle stir fry
            narnee maksan khuurga - no idea, some sort of stir fry I suspect Lamb
            chochgnegei bansh - dumplings with sour cream
            tomcnee khuchmal - it's a dish similar to shepherd's pie
            ondogtsee bnooteic - steak with sunnyside up egg
            uzzngei budaa - rice with raisins...

            khuurga = stir fry

            So I must have had the tsuivan and the tomcnee khuchmal.

            1. re: daveena
              Ruth Lafler Aug 7, 2007 01:20 PM

              Chowhounds are an amazing bunch! Thanks for all the great groundwork -- now if I'm in the area I know what to order.

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