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Lamb Hot Pot, Beijing Style

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I just returned from China a week or two ago, which normally means my craving for Beijing's lamb hot pot should have been satiated at least for another 6 months, but I found no such time on this trip, and sadly, I left with a couple of duck meals too many, and not nearly enough boiled lamb.

I remember seeing an article about King Fung Garden which showed people eating hot pot with the traditional cone shaped charcoal burning contraption, but I was probably a year too late, and was treated to an electric hotpot, similar to something my grandmother has in her home, and a pretty bad lamb experience in general.

I was much happier with Little Q overall, but they didn't have the prototypical sauce that I cannot get enough of. Their sesame dip did not have fermented tofu in it (nor did it have that green stuff that I normally see in Beijing. If I had to take a wild guess as to what it is, I'd guess cilantro oil). I might be grasping at straws here, but is there a place anywhere around Boston that serves good lamb hot pot? Forget the conical contraption, just any place that gets the sauce on point?

On the subject of Northern Chinese food, does anyone know a good place to get spicy cumin lamb, kebab style or stir fried?

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  1. I think Fuloon in Malden serves zi ran yang rou and also Zoe's in Somerville. I've had it at Zoe's when they were open in Brookline and thought it was good but I never had much of it when I lived in mainland.

    1 Reply
    1. re: avial

      Zoe's in Somerville does a lamb hot pot. I was going to suggest Little Q in Quincy as well. Zoe's and Wang's both make excellent Cumin Lamb.

    2. Ok, I have never been to China, so I have no idea if this is authentic or not, but I LOVE the lamb in spicy cumin sauce (stir fried, not kabob) at Qingdao Garden in North Cambrudge. It's like crack -- I have to have it every few weeks or I go into withdrawal. I'm pretty sure they don't have lamb hot pot though -- too bad, sounds like something I'd love.

      Qingdao Garden Restaurant
      2382 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02140

      1 Reply
      1. re: litchick

        So good. Makes it hard to explore the rest of the menu. In fact, maybe I need some more tomorrow.

      2. This may not be the same lamb dish that you are referring too, but at Chinatown cafe, I always order this lamb dish, it is called, "Lamb with dried bean Curd", it is cooked with ginger, chinese dates and orange peel and the lamb usually still has the bones and it is so good specially if dipped in chili oil. I have seen this dish at Victoria seafood and some manhattan chinatown restaurants, I am sure this must be Northern chinese dish.

        1. Know the dish well (made with mutton in many Chinese hot pot restaurants). Had the same cravings. Closest thing I've found is Japanese shabu shabu places like http://www.shabuzen.com/

          1. ok, this is way late but fwiw:

            the "green stuff" is finely chopped jiu cai hua 韭菜花(garlic chive flower), if you make your own hot pot, the jiu cai hua is usually available fresh at kam man/ c-mart etc, or kam man also carries liu bi ju (六必居) brand condiments, the beijing pickle and bottled veg brand.

            for beijing food, the options are beijing star in waltham and beijing one taste (literal translation of the chinese name, i'm not sure that's what they call it in english...) in watertown. fuloon, wang's and qindao are pretty close in flavor to beijng food, the cooks/and owners are from shandong.

            i haven't been in a while, but beijing one taste used to offer beijing style shuang yang rou 涮羊肉(boiled mutton hot pot) with sesame paste, not oil, dipping sauce.

            2 Replies
            1. re: qianning

              I believe you're thinking of Peking Cuisine in Watertown, which closed a while back.

              1. re: Aromatherapy

                oops, you're right...as mentioned above i hadn't been in a while....