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General Tso's Chicken

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miranda Oct 12, 2007 02:40 PM

Where is the best Gen Tso's chicken....Miranda

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    Apprentice RE: miranda Oct 12, 2007 02:51 PM

    I've often wondered if this dish is an authentic Cantonese/Mainland dish or was it invented for westerners. I don't order this dish often, usually when I'm with certain friends or if I crave some grease. The best I've had is at Asian Legend and I'm sure I'll get shot for saying that.

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      childofthestorm RE: miranda Oct 12, 2007 02:58 PM

      When I lived at Yonge & Wellesley, I used to order it from that "Not Just Noodles" place far more than I should have. Random, I know, but it's really good there (and cheap).

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        embee RE: miranda Oct 12, 2007 04:09 PM

        I've heard all kinds of legends about this dish. While ostensibly from Hunan, it sure didn't originate in Mainland China. But I don't think of it as "western" either. I don't have time to look at the moment, but I suspect you'll find all kinds of stories about it on the net.

        The best to my palate was at a second floor place on Baldwin called the Ohhh Kitchen. I haven't heard any mention of them in years and don't know whether they still exist. They called it "General George". Every version I've had anywhere for ages has been bad.

        1 Reply
        1. re: embee
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          jeff75 RE: embee Oct 17, 2007 08:21 AM

          Embee, you are going to make me cry. Our family used to go to this place at least once a month for over a decade. They started out a few doors down the road under the name "eating counter" before moving down the road and changing the name. Their General Geroge chicken was by far my favourite dish in the city and I have yet to find anything even close in comparison. They managed to stay open for a while afte Joe, the owner, passed away but things were never the same. The family sold the place I think and I dont even know what is there today. They also had a chicken dish that was lit on fire when they brought it to the table that was spectacular.

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          timc RE: miranda Oct 12, 2007 04:59 PM

          Here's one legend which puts it neither as an authentic Cantonese/Mainland dish nor as a western dish: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/04/mag...

          The best I've had, too, has been at Asian Legend - it suits my Chinese palate just fine. Not too heavy handed with the batter nor with the sugar in the sauce.

          As an aside, the best sweet and sour pork I've ever had was in my aunt's house on Cheung Chau (island in Hong Kong). Chunks of pork lightly dusted in flour and fried, with a sharp, vinegary, thin sauce.

          2 Replies
          1. re: timc
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            Apprentice RE: timc Oct 15, 2007 02:49 PM

            That answers my question very well. Thank you.

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              TorontoJo RE: timc Oct 16, 2007 06:26 AM

              BTW, the recipe in that article is really wonderful. But as mentioned, it's not the sweet version of the dish -- it's the original, slightly sour version.

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              TwinklyTerrapin RE: miranda Oct 12, 2007 09:03 PM

              Well, "best" maybe not, but the one I like the most is from Spadina Garden on Dundas. Also, their Spicy Peanut Chicken seems to be made with crack because it's addictive.

              1 Reply
              1. re: TwinklyTerrapin
                xtal RE: TwinklyTerrapin Oct 13, 2007 08:12 AM

                The aforementioned Not Just Noodles (Yonge & Wellesley) is a great choice, as is Swatow (Spadina & Dundas).

              2. Brain of J RE: miranda Oct 13, 2007 02:09 PM

                I've said it before and I'll say it again. The best General Tso's chicken can be found at Taste of China at 338 Spadina---just across the street from Swatow. A lot of places mar this great dish by using too heavy a coating on the meat, but TOC gets it just right. I often order it extra spicy to give it a bit more kick. Great stuff.

                5 Replies
                1. re: Brain of J
                  xtal RE: Brain of J Oct 13, 2007 03:21 PM

                  Thanks for the tip, I'll definitely stop by the next time I'm in the area.

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                    kaymanti RE: xtal Oct 15, 2007 11:35 AM

                    Try House of Bhudda in Georgetown, not so secret anymore, they always have wonderful food, including General Tso

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                      Bigtigger RE: kaymanti Oct 15, 2007 02:17 PM

                      Love the near caramelized GTChicken at Shezuan Shezuan on the mezzanine at First Canadian Place. They deliver - but you can save time and charges by doing a pick up; if you warn them, pay by credit card and then phone 5 mins ahead they will send a waiter out onto the street to hand you your order so avoiding the hassle, time and expense of parking in the downtown core.

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                        embee RE: Bigtigger Oct 15, 2007 02:33 PM

                        That's exactly what I DON'T like about it. This place serves candied food rather than food with a sophisticated interplay of sweet and hot.

                        1. re: embee
                          rayrayray RE: embee Oct 16, 2007 10:14 AM

                          guess its a matter of preference. i love shezuan shezuan for exactly that reason.

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