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Apr 23, 2008 09:17 PM

Ethnic food to drive out to small-towner?

Help! Driving 3+ hrs this Saturday morning to friend living near Sequoia Nat'l Park. I asked her if she wants anything from L.A. and she said, "FOOD!!!" They have some Mexican food and one Thai place nearby, but that's it. She wants prepared food, not ingredients to cook.
I live in SGV so buying Asian food would be a snap, but hot food might not survive. Bummer, cuz I know that's what she really craves.

She does not want sweets (there goes my excuse to buy pastries!), but I might get some red bean stuff.
Prefer SGV places that stay open late or something off the 5 North that will be open early Saturday morning. Can't make it to the West side.

I already bought frozen dumplings from Dumpling Master that I'll bring in a cooler. I figure that's ok since it's easy to fry up.
I can also stop by Porto's and pick up some meat pies, but there's only so many bready things you can eat in one sitting, you know? So I don't want to get bao on top of that.
I'd like to bring a variety of foods. I haven't considered Middle Eastern yet; I don't know what's available for travel besides prepackaged hummus/tabouleh which she could find in a store.

What other savories, meats, etc can I buy (soon!) that will keep for the drive and heat up well?

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  1. I know this is a stumper for me, but ... anybody?
    There's got to be something I haven't thought of. Like should I bring pre-marinated Korean bbq to grill, or is that just asking for a mess in the cooler?

    1 Reply
    1. re: CookieEater

      I think bringing pre-marinated Korean bbq is a great idea... My family used to always do that when we went on any sort of vacation where we had to cook our own food. Also, if you're stopping by the K-market anyways, you might want to consider picking up some kim-bap (Korean style sushi rolls) for yourself to munch on during the drive. It was always my family's choice for road trip food!

    2. Get some Vietnamese sandwiches. But separate the fillings from the bread. Keep the fillings in a cooler. You can also get some Nem Nuong.

      2 Replies
      1. re: raytamsgv

        Where do I get the nem nuong? A grocery store or one of those restaurants on Las Tunas?

        1. re: CookieEater

          We usually just buy it at Nem Nuong Ninh Hoa. I personally like their versions the best. Here's the contact information:

      2. Mom's hummus and Mom's magic sauce!..ooh, farmer's market only.not to hot
        Get her a packed pint of Scoops or Mashti Malone's ice cream
        Take her some cold mezze from Courousel or hummus form Shamshiri
        What about a few banh-mi?
        Hit up Yum Cha cafe for some yummy things beyond bao
        How about a Kebab or something? Or a good Shawerma

        Sandwiches and stuff just seem to travel better, if you're not doing hot food, it gets more difficult. You know, a cooler can be used to keep things hot/warm, too, right?

        1. In my experience, most Chinese food reheats very well; though of course you won't have that immediate freshness (and you'll want to avoid items with crisp-fried coatings), to someone starving for this kind of thing nuked noodles beat hell out of no noodles. Or Chinese broccoli or whatever. You could also go to one of the Hong Kong-style places (such as MVP or 888) that have barbecued pork, chickens and ducks, and get something like that - those things reheat beautifully. A quart or so of soup might be a treat as well.

          And as long as you're at Porto's, while their meat pies are OK, the potato balls are divine, and they zap very well too. A friend brought two dozen to a party we had a couple of weeks ago and left the dozen uneaten ones behind, which I have only recently finished.

          1. When I lived in Santa Cruz, I would have killed for a Langer's pastrami sandwich.

            No good Delis in that area.