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Seeking out excellent ethnic food in the near burbs, with a NY hound

Hallo, Hounds! Mr. Swank and I are dining with a Queens-based hound this weekend. Our hobby is finding unheralded and succulent spots to dine -- preferably cheap. In the past, we've ended up at and loved:

Biryani Park
Winsor Dum Sum
Taqueria el Amigo
Strip T's [which isn't unheralded -- but is excellent nonetheless]

Essentially, we're looking for a sublime dining experience that isn't overhyped and overpriced. An exotic cuisine is always a plus: Sonoran, Bolivian, Taiwanese, Sri Lankan, and so forth.

Would love recommendations. The Hound is staying in Newton, and we're in the Lexington-Arlington-Belmont triangle.

Thanks!

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  1. Little Q, Sofra, Asia Gourmet in Concord, a trip to Mt. Auburn to shop at Severn, Arax, Fastacchi, Eastern Lamejun

    3 Replies
    1. re: teezeetoo

      Ditto for Sofra! Eastern Lamejun has amazing grape leaves, too.

        1. re: Small Plates

          Plus one for Little Q. Don't worry about eating hot soup in the heat - they air-condition that place to a fair-thee-well, you will want a sweater!

      1. Moroccan Hospitality in Malden is a great place, serving tangine dishes.

        1. Cambridge is full of good dining spots; I am sure you know them as well as i do. You can start with Oleana and Cragie and go from there.

          1. I have not yet been, but heard good things about Oya Cuban Café in Malden.

            1. I do the same. Lately I've enjoyed East Boston for Latin (Tacqueria Jalisco, Tu Metapan, Rincon Limeno) and Lowell for Cambodian (Simply Khmer, Red Rose) and Framingham for Brazilian/Salvadorean (Casa de Chicharron and lots of Brazilian bakeries).

              2 Replies
              1. re: gourmaniac

                What's good at Casa de Chicharron (asking what is probably an obvious question)? Is it the crispy giant bacon kind of chicharron? I poked my nose in there and almost went in, but it looked like a cafeteria-styled operation with steamer trays, and I needed some quick stuff to go (and wasn't sure I'd be able to navigate it properly)?

                1. re: nsenada

                  I had a chicharron mofongo, which was delicious. seven of eight bucks and included a salad. The chicharron loses its crispness in this dish but added to the chewiness of the mashed plaintains . The chicharron was on the steam table and looked great.