Went there yesterday because I couldn't get to Grace Garden last night! For the first time I ordered take-out from the Country Side Taste menu. I don't think I've ever had "authentic" Chinese, which is why Grace Garden sounded so good...
I ordered the Snow Pea tips with garlic and the Aromatic Shrimp. Both were excellent, and unlike any Chinese I've ever had. When the waiter presented me with my take-out bag he said "Who is eating this?" I told him I was and he said..."Very expensive". (which it was...about 25 bucks.) He then said "Only Hong Kong people eat this"...he seemed very impressed that I was buying it...I told him I would only do it once in a while ;-)
Anyway, the food was delicious, and well worth the price as it will give me at least three meals. Question though...I have never had snow pea tips before...do they look and taste like cooked fresh spinach? It was delicious...but I could bet money it was spinach!!!
the main difference for me is i never get that tongue shrivelled up sensation from eating snow pea tips like i do from eating spinach. also when both are cooked to the same degree the snow pea tip should have a bit more "bite" to the texture. traditionally chinese loves their veggie with a little crunch to it still so that might be one reason why people love snow pea tips. they do taste similar though after you throw in all the garlic and ginger that's typically used to prepare it.
Yes, they do kind of have the look of spinach, and maybe a little bit the taste of spinach... of all the chinese leafy green vegetables, I'd think choi sum (yow choy) would be the one more so than snow pea tips to taste close to spinach. Snow pea tips, though, should have a much less iron-y (metallic) taste than I find spinach to have (and I love spinach).
It's funny that you bring this up because on our way to GG last night, Baltomike and I discussed if we would go back to Szechuan House, where we've been going for many years, now that we've discovered the glories of GG. The consensus was: of course. What they do, they do well. And, it's always pretty inexpensive and satisfying. I almost always order the snow pea tips when I'm there, and never thought that they tasted like spinach. Maybe last night was an off night?
Also, there are definitely times when I need American-Chinese comfort food, and SH does that as well as anyone.