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Best ethnic markets in Orange county???

Joani Macaroni Sep 9, 2007 09:09 PM

Need suggestions for ethnic markets to visit for a college class on international food. Plenty of Asian places (we're near Westminster's Korean and Vietnamese areas) so I need other types (have plenty of Hispanic choices also). Would love some eastern European (Russian?), Middle eastern, African, etc. choices if they exist here. General area is east of 605 fwy, west of 57, south of Imperial Hwy and no farther south than Huntington Beach. Appreciate any and all suggestions.

  1. yvonnechiffon Apr 20, 2010 11:39 AM

    There is a great Indian store that's in Tustin or Orange. Sorry I don't have the name or exact address. If you are traveling south on the 5 fwy from Buena Park and exit at Newport Blvd. Turn Left. It's down just a bit on the right side in a strip mall. There's a yogurtland (or something like it) near by. It's got a lot of great stuff. Also don't forget Northgate Markets for Mexican foods and produce. Also, in La Habra there is a Ranch Market that has latin (to appeal to the neighborhood) and arabic foods (to appeal to the owners).
    Your class sounds cool - where is it? Can anyone enroll?

    Northgate Market
    722 N Anaheim Blvd, Anaheim, CA

    1 Reply
    1. re: yvonnechiffon
      Joani Macaroni Apr 22, 2010 07:09 PM

      I guess ocshooter didn't check the date on the original request, but that's okay! I completed the class in Dec. '07. It was a great class - we went 'round the world with food and each week (members of each kitchen group) were assigned to cook one or two parts of an ethnic meal. Instructor (Santa Ana College) provided the recipes & food; four kitchens were busy humming along. At the end of the class we sat down to a complete ethnic meal. The class was originally designed for those (nurses, dieticians, other health care workers) who work with ethnic groups or incoming immigrants, to help them (the nurses, etc.) understand a wide variety of cuisine and culture that impacts the health of those groups. There is a lot of folk knowledge/wisdom/tradition/belief systems involved in food choice, preparation and serving among many ethnic groups and incoming immigrants that can impact their health. The class was not limited to the medical profession though - and it was an excellent class to fulfill the ethnic diversity study requirement.. I would guess that anyone could take it but with the funding cutbacks, you'd probably have to be enrolled for other classes and working toward a certificate or degree. You could check out their website (Santa Ana College). There were also tests weekly.

      Anyway, I ended up doing the report on Russian food which is one of my ethnic ancestries. I used the Moscow Deli (Costa Mesa) to write my report. I got so interested in Russia hubby and I went on a tour of Russia and the eastern European countries in 2008. One of the highlights was a private dinner just for our tour group in Lithuania in an underground room with Lithuanian folk band and dancing.

      Moscow Deli
      3015 Harbor Blvd, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

    2. elmomonster Sep 10, 2007 02:43 PM

      How about Italian?

      Claro's Italian Market.


      Freshia -- which is Korean (one of a few that exists outside Garden Grove


      Mitsuwa - Japanese (in Costa Mesa


      99 Ranch in Irvine and Fullerton

      3 Replies
      1. re: elmomonster
        OCAnn Sep 10, 2007 03:27 PM

        There's a SuperMart (I think it's called) on the S/W corner of Beach and Malvern in Buena Park. It's a Korean market.

        1. re: elmomonster
          Das Ubergeek Sep 10, 2007 07:37 PM

          Also Cortina's Italian Market on Brookhurst and Orange in Anaheim -- forgot about that, and the Polish delicatessen (ingredients only, no cooked-to-order food) on the corner of Taft and Tustin (that'd be the southern of the two corners, where Taft heads west) in Orange.

          1. re: elmomonster
            ocshooter Apr 20, 2010 02:24 PM

            You could hit Claro's in Tustin and the Indian Market yvonnechiffon listed as well as a Kosher Market in Tustin all within a few minutes of each other. I don't recall the name of the Kosher market, but it is in the same plaza as the Creme Pan and across from the Beach Pit BBQ on El Camino in Old Towne Tustin.

          2. Curt the Soi Hound Sep 10, 2007 07:13 AM

            On La Palma, just west of Euclid, Thai Lao Market specializes in Thai. They even sell Parrot Soap and St Luke's Prickly Heat Powder! It's a more region specific "Asian" market.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Curt the Soi Hound
              Joani Macaroni Sep 10, 2007 07:52 AM

              Thanks Curt - sounds great! What is special about Parrot Soap? (At first I misread it and thought you meant soup . . .!)

              1. re: Joani Macaroni
                Curt the Soi Hound Sep 10, 2007 11:27 AM

                Just a Thai brand, a bit obscure.
                It has a pretty wrapper and is quite aromatic.


            2. t
              torta basilica Sep 10, 2007 06:26 AM

              Wholesome Choice would cover the Eastern European and a host of other cuisines...

              3 Replies
              1. re: torta basilica
                Das Ubergeek Sep 10, 2007 10:50 AM

                Yes -- it's Persian and has a lot of Russian foods as well. And technically speaking it isn't south of Huntington Beach (it's at the corner of Culver and Michelson in Irvine).

                There's a place on Orangethorpe (or maybe it's Commonwealth or La Palma -- ain't I specific!) in Fullerton that advertises that it's an African market. I will make a better note of it when I drive past. I want to say it's on Orangethorpe near State College. In addition, there's supposedly a market attached to Tana Ethiopian Restaurant on La Palma in Anaheim (very close to Buena Park)... if not, I'm sure you could get them to sell you the ingredients you want.

                There are a number of Arabic markets on Brookhurst Ave. between Lincoln Ave. and the 22 ("Little Gaza"), with a couple further south in Little Saigon, including halal meat.

                1. re: Das Ubergeek
                  Joani Macaroni Sep 10, 2007 01:45 PM

                  Thanks! I guess I will have to put a bit more mileage on my car than I was planning, but all these suggestions sound good. I am near the junction of the 22 fwy and Beach Blvd. so they are all within a 30- 45 minute drive.

                  1. re: Joani Macaroni
                    marti Sep 10, 2007 03:09 PM

                    There is a JON'S market on Goldenwest near Bolsa that carries lots of ethnic food items. You might want to give them a call ahead to see if they carry what you are looking for. By the way, they have a mexican deli with hot cooked items that are very good, also.

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