Saturday, November 16, 2013

Homey Korean food cooked by your next door Ahjumma

Sushi Bar Dehnheide

Note this name. I'm sharing a secret here. This is a place to go when you are not in the mood for cooking and just want to have a cozy meal prepared by an aunt. Operated in a run down Korean Imbiss,  Don't expect fancy fusion sushi a la Stefan Henssler or some high grade Korean BBQed rib eye and pork. No! this is all about the side dishes; imagine all the tasty Korean ban Chan, like Spinach salad, radish kimchi, bean sprout salad, stir fried green beans, Jap Chae, All those simple but so time consuming Ban Chan that Korean mothers made daily. 

I was there for lunch and ordered vegetarian Bibimbap. The Bibimbap is different and much simpler, no hot stone bowl, no rice underneath, no runny egg yolk, no mixing. But I love this version too, I got to eat all the element by themselves and got to appreciate their own unique taste. The scrambled eggs are fluffy, the green beans are crispy and nutty, the spinach are marinated only with sesame oil and salt and shine through the minimalist marinade. the bean sprouts are sour and sweet. The jap chae are succulent and absorb all the soy sauce taste. The Kimchi are fresh, spicy and a bit sour. Oh the rice, the star of the meal, succulent and sticky, love every bite of it. For €6,00 this bowl of bibimbap worths its every cent. 

I was there more than once and ordered a lot of bibimbaps. Everytime there're new surprises. The components are similar but the Ahjumma add or exchanged her side dishes often depends on what's in season. Talking about regional cooking here :-) 

One more thing, here's another hush-hush. I don't even want to write this. Otherwise we all the Barmbeker need to wait in line every Tuesdays and Saturdays. Because on these two days, the Ahjumma prepares her buffet meal. For dirt cheap €8,50 you got to eat to your hearts contents. It's of course rough and homey cooking. But they have enough selections e.g. kim bap and sushis, all these Korean ban chans, miso soup, deep fried chicken wings, bulgogi, my all time favourite zucchini and veggies fritters, fruits, deep fried bananas. 

One more tip, be on time! On 12 o'clock sharp they start their buffet. Even before that, people stand in line to stormed the buffet. A lot  of times we come a bit later and we really do need to queue waiting other people to finish or to share a table with other guests. Now, got an Idea, how loved they are by us the Barmbekers?

Sushi Bar Dehnheide

Barmbeker Markt 37-3822081 Hamburg040 297188

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Extremely Spicy Hunan Food at Chinese am Fleet

While I was preggie with my daughter, Fitzie, I wasn't really keen on eating. I lost 8 kg at my first trimester but after that slowly but surely I gain them all back in the last 6 months. After I got my appetite back, I always want to eat spicy food and here's the place that I frequently visit once the craving hit in. At last I got a good reason for all those cravings I've having for years (see the name of this blog). 

This place is recommended by a Hunan friend. Do I need to explain about all the difference of spicy? heck , if you are reading this, chances that you are acquainted with Chinese cooking but still i love to be teachy. So here are the difference of Hunan spicy and Sichuan spicy. with The Hunanese e.g. Mao Zi Dong (you know that big leader of Chinese Communist party) are spicy eater, if Sichuanese are more like numbing spice, Hunanese are hot spicy like chili spicy. But different to say Indonesian spicy. Hunan Spicy are more like biting and direct. Got it? Like the hotness is hiting directly and without all those cloying complicated spices in Indonesian cooking. 

My Hunanese friend took control of the night and ordered all the right food. Pork feet for pregnant lady is extremely important, "she stressed." They are filled with collagen and good for bones. Whatever the reasons are, This is one hell of tasty pork feet. Soft and succulent, sweetish but oh so spicy. I drenched the sauce on my rice after everyone finished and almost ordered another serving for me to take out. 

Spicy pork feet

We already got a red braised type of dish, so we need a quick stir fry and dry meal, so here is the vegetarian bean curd stir fried with slivers of veggies. Sounds so simple but again oh so tasty. The bean curd absorbs the sauce and the aroma of wok. Whereas the veggies stays so bright and crunchy. I love this dish for its straightforwardness yet complex with mixture of aroma and taste.

stir fried bean curd 

The last dish is a very traditional Hunanese dish, extremely spicy snail with chopped spices. Honestly saying, I wouldn't give this dish a glance, if I'm the one who do the ordering. Snail? Hello!! I want meat and seafood! not some lowly snail. But it's surprisingly tasty. I know I sound like a broken recorder with all these tastys. I can't help it. They are all so tasty. 

Hard and succulent, more like a gum, the snails need all those sauce to give them flavour. So, good job spicy sauce you give these snails great touch up.  They are not lowly food anymore, they become so lively and vibrant with the sweetness and spiciness. 

Spicy snails
If you are wondering, why the pictures are tiny. I did it with purpose. I was lazy to bring my dSLR kamera, so I just took them with my lousy smart phone kamera. I was so hungry and wasn't really in the mood to take pictures. So my hands shook due to the Fitzie hungerness :-) and it resulted in shaky, out of focus pictures. 

But don't let my lousy pictures keep you away from all these goodnes. Please give them a try and you will realize how good spicy stuffs can be. 

Chinese am Fleet

Borstelmannsweg 77
20537 Hamburg
Stadtviertel: Hamm Mitte

040 21909991

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Quán dò Vietnamese Street Kitchen

Love love love this restaurant. Located directly in the heart of Hamburg, 3 minutes walk from Hamburg Central station. This is the address for your authentic Vietnamese food while you do the shopping in Möckenbergstraße. I know I sound like a sales person in an printed ad. But can't help to get excited about this place. 

They got everything right. Great location, chic decoration, tasty and affordable food and friendly waitresses. You know, there are two types of restaurants which got me excited first a hole in the wall type of place; dirty, small, dingy but serves the best authentic food you can request. The second one is the type you can bring your date or your German friends and get them excited about Asian food. Quán dò is definitely fits into the second type. All my German friends rave about this place, how they love the freshness of the veggies, the interesting mix of exotic Asian herb and how cool Asian food can be. 

Okay enough of all these ravings, without much ado, here're some pics

Very crispy spring rolls, who doesn't love deep fried food. Of course sauce can be better but it doesn't bother me. I never dip my spring rolls to any kind of sauce. I eat deep fried food for their crispiness so why dip it to any kind of sauce and soften them. But I dip my chinese crullers into my soy milk. Hmmm I wonder now. But that's thing for another post. Anyhow the spring rolls got crispy exterior, right combination of meat and veggies filling. Thumbs up

Frühlingsrollen Quan Do 
We got hooked to Quan Do because of this dish. Their Bún Chả; rice noodles topped with grilled marinated pork. 

Do I need to mention that Hubby loves Bun Cha, he ardently search his best Bun Cha in Hamburg like the one in Berlin. We still need to find his perfect one but he's quite satisfied with this one. The fish sauce dressing (nuon nam) is sourish, sweet and fishy and the bowl is a good ratio of pork and rice noodles. The pork is slightly sweet and still tender. Hubby only complained that the pork was grilled on electric grill therefore lacking of smokey aroma. 

Bun Cha 

I was, at the time of this particular dinner, pregnant with my daughter Fitzie. That's sometime in Summer 2012, I know I'm extremely late on postings but I promise I will do it one by one. So I wasn't really in the mood of eating and ordered a light mango salad, which were very fresh, sourish and sweet. Just right for a preggie lady. 

Mango salad with chicken satay 

I've been to Quan Do more than once, and I can say, I've tried almost all of their main dishes and some of their specials too. Many are good and some are mediocre but overalls I'm satisfied. 

Quán dò

Georgsplatz 16
20099 Hamburg
040 32901737

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Fischimbiss Schabi

One of the reason I love Hamburg is the abundance of seafood. You can get fresh seafood in weekly market, supermarket and many restaurants offer various seafood dishes. One of my favourite fish Imbiss is in Schulterblatt, called Fischimbiss Schabi. They offer relatively fresh  and tasty seafood with reasonable price.

Here is my mixed plate of grilled fish with deep fried potatoes served with a dollop of aioli and some salad. The fishes are fresh, grilled with perfection, crispy skins and juicy, soft flesh. Don't forger to order one of Hamburg's invention: The fritz-kola. 

The story behind this weird looking fuzzy drinks is ... many years ago, some poor student decided they could't get enough caffeine from the normal coke, so they concocted similar drink with more caffeine content. Since they were poor and did not have money for sales and marketing, they visited each and every shop in Sternschanze asking the shop owner to sell their drink. Slowly the drink got much love from the Schanze public and become a hit. Since then they've added many other flavour to their sortiment. What a succes story, isn't it. 


Here's a look of their grilled squid for Hubby, who loves squid. 

Crispy and succulent squid ... yummy

One little tip; go and eat on a sunny day and snap a place outside on the bench. If it's occupied, wait till its free, shove the occupant or share the bench, your choice. The imbiss have an open kitchen and once they grill their seafood the air can be fishy and the smell lingers on your clothes. I've had that experience and the first thing I did once I was home, was shower and did the laundry.

For the dessert, just walk one block further ... but that's material for another post. So stay tuned and wait for it next week. 

Fischimbiss Schabi 
Schulterblatt 60
20357 Hamburg

Saturday, August 17, 2013

An Khang Quan

I love good Vietnamese food, imagine piping hot Pho, soury and sweet Bun Cha, silky and succulent Banh Cuon, crispy and flavourful Banh Xeo, the list can go on and on and on. So near my office, there are a very good, good means for me authentic and delish, Vietnamese Restaurant. 

The green decorated restaurant is unimpressive from the outside, but the inside is prettily decorated and gave you a felling that you've stepped into a house in a small bamboo village in Vietnam.   

I was there for lunch, the menu is very interesting and price is reasonable. We got tomato soup with almond flakes as a starter. 

Tomato soup
Hubby who always want Bun Cha wherever he went, chose a lemon grass pork with vermicelli, The pork is stir fried and topped with chunks of roasted peanut, and thin slivers of iceberg lettuce give crispness to the dish. The sauce can be more sourish, but we are not complaining. 

lemon grass pork with vermicelli 
Me, always in search of good wok hei noodles ordered vegetarian stir fried flat rice noodle, I was satisfied, bit salty and sweetish with strong enough wok hei, and most important the veggies are still slightly undercooked. 

Stir fried rice noodles
I like the food, I like the ambient, this is the restaurant where you want to bring guest to entertain. They even have a very impressive dinner menu which offers vietnamese steam boat. Wonder how will it differs to the Chinese one.

An Khang Quan

Hoheluftchausse 86
20253 Hamburg 
U3 - Hoheluftbrücke

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Freshly picked raspberries at Glantz Erdbeerhof

Are you a raspberry or strawberry person? Me, I always prefer strawberry, it's sweeter and fruitier than raspberries. I admit, the raspberries that I know is always those almost foul-travelled long way-packed in styrofoam-without fragrance-fruits from the supermarket. Those raspberries lovers always swear that fresh raspberries are way better than strawberries. One of hubby's colleagues, Volker, is one and he told us that Glantz Erdbeerhof offers raspberries for picking. Once we got such information, hubby and me decide we want to eat pick them this weekend.  

We choose to pick them from the Erdbeerhof in Delingsdorf, Here are the rows of the raspberries trees.

Rows of berries
Look at those plump fruits, aren't they just screaming: "pop me in your mouth!" 

I must say I'm a convert, the ripe plump raspberries are so sweet and they have such a aromatic fragrance which is so inviting. And the color, oh the color, it's such a pretty pink that hubby thought I smeared lipstick on my shirt, and it's actually raspberries juices. 


After such tiring job; snacking picking raspberries, the Glantz erdbeerhof has a very pretty and comfy erdbeer shop and erdbeer loung where you can buy every product made of strawberries and raspberries. Jam, wine, dried fruits, tea, sorbet,  you name it they have it.

Don't forget to sit at the lounge and order their home made strawberry and raspberry sorbet. 

The shop
Strawberry sorbet in cone

Raspberries sorbet in cone

Erdbeerhof Glantz

Hamburgerstraße 2a
22941 Dellingsdorf

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Black Vanilla Ice Cream at Giovanni L.

It's summer time and naturally it's ice cream time. I've eaten a lot of ice cream in Hamburg and there is a really good one in Eppendorf (Eis-Schmidt), mediocre one in Barmbek (not worth mentioning), a good old school type in Bramfeld (Eis Cafe Arktis) and some other ice cream here and there. 

Here is one particular ice cream I find interesting enough to blog. It's the black vanilla ice cream at Giovanni L. You can find them nowadays overall in Hamburg and Hannover and I'm sure it will spring in other places too. The owner Giovanni Lasagne is big on franchising his ice cream. I tried various flavours and I must say the ice creams are good, dense and creamy, packed with flavor and there are many surprising flavours too like say red bull, campari, papaya (which is considered very exotic by the Germans) and many more.

Giovanni L. 

Back to the black vanilla, I find it super interesting because the vanilla ice cream we used to is always milky white, but if you think of it, vanilla pod is actually black. So if you blend midnight black vanilla pod and make ice cream out of it, it should be either black or at least grey or white with thousand black dots isn't it? But we are so used to ice cream mixed with artificial vanilla flavor that my first reaction on the black ice cream is eww. But once you overcome your disgust and tried the ice cream you will be rewarded with shot of intense vanilla that every other vanilla ice cream will pale in comparison. 

If you are looking for other flavours to pair it with the black vanilla, my personal favourites are pistachio, Spanish cream and black chocolate. But take it from me, you want it pure black, undiffused with other disturbing flavours. 

Black Vanilla Ice Cream

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Fresh Cherries from tree

At last it's a hot and humid summer in Hamburg. The temperature has been hitting 30°C the whole week. There are days when I felt that it is indeed too much. On the other hand it's time for all the juicy summer products, salads and picking cherries, strawberries, raspberries or all other berries available for picking. 

My husband and me picked Valeska and Knupper cherries from an farm at Altes Land. the farm or orchard is called Obsthof Schröder. Their cherries are ripe and ready for picking. Moreover it's so cheap too. 1 kg of class A cherry cost 3 Euro, In supermarket you need to pay 6 - 7 euro for cherries from Turkey. So if you are wondering, what are you going to do this or next weekend, go to Altes Land and pick your own cherries. If you see an Asian family busy picking and stuffing our mouth with cherries don't forget to say hi to me. You see, my husband is so excited about cherries that he decided we need more. 

Without much ado, here are the pictures of the cherries still hanging on the tree
Valeska Cherries 


yield of the day

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Zhong Hua Chinese Breakfast revisited

I've blogged about Zhong Hua a little while ago and I promised that I will go back for some of their other dishes. So I did! I wonder if it's ok to blog about the same place twice. But hey, there are some new dishes that might interest you. I did took some pictures already so why not put them on. 

Zhong Hua is actually not a restaurant specializing in authentic Chinese dishes. They are actually a typical Germanized Chinese Restaurant. They offer Buffet the whole day. I've taken a look at their buffet offering. They were the standard deep fried stuff with some reddish sweet and sour sauce. Definitely not my cup of tea. 

They only offer and prepare Chinese Breakfast every Saturday and Sunday. And as breakfast should be, they stop taking order after 2 pm. So for those who wanted these yummy stuff, wake up early! well, not so early I mean you can still come at 11 am, like I always do. 

As I've promised on my previous post. I ordered the salty soy milk.

Different than the sweet soy milk, the deep fried crullers are already cut into bite size and mixed into the soy milk. Accompanying the crullers are sea weed, small shrimps and chili oil. Hubby's comment are "hey, this taste nice." After a moment of thinking, exclaimed: "Similar to the Japanese soup!" My reactions were: "Hey it's two different stuff, no similarizing Japs and Chinese Cuisine." But I must say due to the seaweed which is wakame in Japanese. No wonder Hubby thinking that they are the same. 

I like them a lot. It's something different than the standard sweet soy milk which I'm accustomed to in south east Asia. But if I must make a choice between these two different variation. I might still prefer the standard sweet one. I blame it on my auto-pilot. People tend to go for the food they eat, during the time they grow up. I think there's a mechanism in human brain, which make food from childhood taste better or more vivid. I will use my Dad's phrase which is "gan qing chi" 感情吃 literally it means sentiment food. 

The second stuff we ordered is their Sheng Jian Bao (Pan Fried Bao)
The Baos are alright, plump and doughy, crispy at the bottom. The filling are generous. But I've eaten a lot better home made pan fried bao. 

Porridge with century egg and pork
Their porridge are a big dissapointment, of course the century egg is generous and the pork are also alright but the porridge itself is so tasteless that we need to keep pouring soy sauce into the porridge. And I hate dark porridge. I like my porridge to be watery and clear, with a very gingery and peppery after taste. IMHO I think I can make a better porridge than they do. 

But here is the dish which nail me right away. This is the knife cutted noodles with lamb pieces and tomato. I love this thing right away. The unshapely noodles are course and al dente. The soup are tomatoey and the lamb chunk are so tender and not gamey at all. With some spritz of black vinegar. I can eat the whole portion for me myself and be done with it. 

Zhong Hua
Wandsbeker Marktstraße 157
22041 Hamburg
U1 - Wandsbek Markt

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Soft tofu stew at Kim Chi

Some of my friends raved about Kim Chi at Heussweg, which according to them made one hell tasty Sundubu Jigaee even better than the one from my favourite Han Mi. So it's been on my to-try-list for a very long time. I've been to Kim Chi for more than once, it just every time I look at their menu, I changed my mind in the last minute and order bbq pork or some other stuffs.

Last week I decided it's time to try the stew for lunch. I came early and officially the restaurant  was not even open yet but the cook which had start preparing some ban chan allowed me to wait in the restaurant. I happily looked around the menu, I always love browsing restaurant's menu, searching for something interesting to try for the next visit. 

Then the owner and the waitress came, they greeted me, must be surprised to see a hungry little Asian woman sitting in the corner, anyway without further ado I ordered the stew and in a short 10 minutes the food came.

Yummy yummy, I love Korean side dishes, there're so much to try. I was a very happy girl when I saw there're not only 4 or 5 but 7 different side dishes, from top: bean sprout, spinach, radish, potatoes, fish cake, ubiquitous kimchi and lastly green beans. My favourites this time are spicy bean sprout and the sweet and sour radish. 

The main attraction is of course the stew. For those unfamiliar with Korean cuisine. Sundubu Jigaee is a soft tofu stew with some seafood, it should be served bubbling hot and while bubbling an egg is cracked into the soup, resulting in a soft and silky pouched egg. Hot and spicy, along with some seafood there're soft tofu which just melt in the mouth.

and here is one with the treasure, the yolk

I must say the best part of the meal is actually the ban chan (side dishes). The stew itself is alright, spicy and hot, but it's definitely some frozen sea food. I don't mind frozen one, I mean we are in Germany and not in Korea or some island with stock of endless fresh seafood. but still there are only countable tiny pieces of shrimps, squid and mussels. The rest are chunks of tofu. 

It was still a good meal, it just I came with an extremely high expectation and expected something which will blow my mind off. In the end I was happy with the side dishes but the stew didn't impress me. 

Kim Chi
Heussweg 10
20257 Hamburg

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Hoang Mai a true gem

Hey there, how are you? I hope you missed me. In case you are wondering, I do miss you!!! After such a long long long hiatus. I finally decided that I love to blog and still want to write and take pictures of tasty foods and meals. So without long intro here goes my first post in 2013.

The weather is uncomfortably cold and rainy, I can accept it if it's october or even september but it's in the end of May, where's sunny spring? Anyway what food do I crave for when it's rainy and cold? A bowl of warm pho of course! Funny thing is, I've never been a fan of pho, I just felt that it's a boring dish. It's nothing more than plain beef broth with some beef slices and herbs. But there are days, when clear beefy broth is a must have, especially for sick days or days like these! 

Fortunately, I know a good place that serve authentic Pho whenever my craving hits - Hoang Mai. Every Sunday for Brunch time, you will find Vietnamese families spending their time here. Don't expect a pretty decorated chic cafe. This place is merely a square room filled with basic tables and chairs, just functional enough for anyone who wishes to eat in. But if you can forgive their interior, you are going to get food as if it's made in Chiang Mai.

The Pho you see here comes with the complimentary fresh herbs, bean sprouts, and the freshly sliced bird eye chillies. The golden stuff at the top left is quẩy, Vietnamese style cruller, which is shorter than the Chinese variety. If you wonder what is this cruller doing near a bowl of Pho, it's because I love to dip crullers into soup. There's just something about eating deep fried food that has soaked all the goodness of a soup. Either way, a koay in pho is really nice to have. Anyway, I digress, back to the pho! Notice the pinkiness of the meat! I don't need to tell you that the meat are really tender! ... mmmmhhhh

Hubby was craving for Bun Cha instead (like the one in Dong Xuan Center in Berlin). So he ordered rice noodles with deep fried spring rolls and deep fried Vietnamese pork sausage instead of pork belly. I tasted some of the rice noodles. They were ok. But, the deep fried spring rolls were heavenly. It's peppery and porky, and soo crispy that you got that satisfying "crunch" when you bite into it. 

We also ordered shrimps summer rolls as side dishes.
Each roll has 3 shrimps, some rice noodles, salads and herbs. The size of the shrimps were huge for the price that we are paying. It was fresh and cold, and dipped with the hoisin sauce, it was perfect.

The best part of the meal is *drum rolls* Dessert!
The dessert is a combination of different Asian Jello like Cendol, Cincau, red beans, green beans, yellow beans and nata de coco. The Vietnamese have different terms for all these jello, but I only know the Indonesian names. The mixture of all these goodies are topped with coconut milk and lots of ice. Exactly how we do dessert in Asian. Come say it together with me. ..... Yummmmyyyy .... 

Because it was so good, here is a picture of the dessert again: but after all the goodies are mixed up.

No I'm not finished yet, I save the best for the last. Are you ready? Everything that we ate only cost around 5 euro, yes 5 euro all those beef and shrimps and the drink/dessert cost 1,50. So what are you waiting for? Get into the U-Bahn & Bus, Go there right away :P ... But make sure you  pay attention to their opening hours.

One more interesting tidbit. There's a Vietnamese supermarket right next to Hoang Mai (in fact, they are connected with an indoor door). When you're there, don't forget to buy their tasty vietnamese baos. They cost 1,50 euro each but they're huge and filled with generous portion of minced pork, egg and vermicelli.  

Hoang Mai
Öjendorfer Damm 42
22043 Hamburg