Where to buy fake meat in SF (grocery store)
I was in a Vietnamese supermarket in Orange County the other day and they had a freezer case full of fake meats of all sorts. The kind used in Asian restaurants that serve fake meat dishes. I think it's wheat-gluten based? but may be soy based, I don't know. There were big logs of bologna-looking stuff, as well as shaped and seasoned packages of 'chicken,' 'pork,' 'shrimp,' 'fish balls,' etc. A wide selection.
I want to experiment making my own dishes with this stuff. Does anyone know where I can find a similar selection in San Francisco supermarkets, or the Peninsula (I live in SF, was only visiting the OC) ? Would I have a better chance at Chinese markets or other Asian (Vietnamese, et al.)?
Does anyone know what I'm talking about?
thanks in advance.
If you want healthy fake meat, try Rainbow grocery. If you want cheap Asian fake meat that might be more unhealthy than what it replicates because of additives and nasty ingredients, try May Wah on Clement St.
Rainbow has gluten, soy items etc mostly organic from reputable sources. May Wah has similar stuff but who know what they put in it.
Manila Oriental Market (MOM) on Mission in the Excelsior has an entire refrigerated or frozen (I'm not sure which) section devoted to those meat substitute vegetarian products. There are "meat" rolls, bean curd sheets, etc.
Manila Oriental Market
4175 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94112
I agree that you should look at the ingredients and you might want to be careful with this "fake"meat bought at Asian markets especially if you're sensitive to MSG. With that said, I do think there's a lot more variety in the Asian supermarkets and they're usually in the freezer section. A couple of quick places that come to mind not already mentioned are Sunset Super (two locations - Irving St. and Vicente St.), Pacific Super (Daly City), and 99 Ranch (Daly CIty).
I grew up in san francisco but only came to love "mock duck" once i moved to the twin cities for college. It is ubiquitous here in all varieties of asian cuisine, and, as you mentioned, is a wheat derivative. Some of my favorite vietnamese places here in minneapolis make their own, but i have had decent luck with the canned variety from the regular grocery store - though ive never looked for it in sf - it comes in cans and needs to be drained and thoroughly rinsed of the gunky brown syrup it is packed in. i'll admit, it was tastier before i had seen it in the "raw" its still pretty delish - good luck!