One of my favorite things to do in Chicago is shopping in Chinatown. There is a strip mall called China Square on Archer Avenue just a short distance from Wentworth Avenue, which is the older part of Chinatown but still very popular. Most people have to walk from store to store because it is hard to find parking here.
The newer design of Asian structures can be seen through out the strip mall. Local residents and people from all over the city come here to eat at their favorite restaurants. I have always enjoyed getting some delicious Chinese barbecue from Barbecue King. Don’t forget to buy some Chinese pastry and dim sum to take home. They are good. I always buy more than I can eat.
While I was shopping, Lynard took these pictures for me. They turned out pretty good.
Although I cook Chinese food at home, there are certain foods only Chinese restaurants can do right. Tried as I dared, I couldn’t make dumplings or dim sum, nor could I make the famous char siu (Chinese barbecue). I decided to make char siu one more time after I saw a lively food blog. The guy did a great job showing us how to make char siu at home. I thought, why can’t I do that? It looks delicious and easy.
I have tried many char siu recipes I got online, not good at all. Maybe I found the char siu recipe I have been looking for. I followed his instructions on the website, at least I thought I did anyway. I used pretty much the same ingredients listed there. Except I don’t think pork shoulder is the preferred choice of meat. But what am I supposed to do? It’s not like I have a friend working in the meat department. We can only get what’s available in the store. Regardless, I was confident that I could make restaurant quality char siu this time.
After working in the kitchen for a whole afternoon, I could not be more disappointed at the char siu I made. Although it wasn’t all that bad, it certainly did not have the right flavor of real char siu. It didn’t look like the restaurant char siu either. So what do I do from now on? I buy char siu when I go to Chinatown in Chicago.