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Homestyle Taste in Bridgeport- Dongbei/Northeast Chinese

Homestyle Taste in Bridgeport- Dongbei/Northeast Chinese
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  • Post #61 - September 9th, 2016, 10:34 am
    Post #61 - September 9th, 2016, 10:34 am Post #61 - September 9th, 2016, 10:34 am
    Sweet Willie wrote:
    marothisu wrote:The "pan fried smoked pork cake" is a menu item that, according to my girlfriend, is really hard to find in the US anywhere and is very authentic.
    client and I were doing some food hopping last night, based on your post we stopped by and had this, very worthwhile.

    Also had cumin lamb, I forgot to order the bonein cumin lamb. Still tasty.


    Awesome! Yeah, that is good stuff and pretty awesome they have it on the menu. I think anybody who likes sauces similar to Peking Duck sauce and smokey meat (Beef or Pork) should try it. They have a lot of good Dongbei food on the menu (which again is basically the first two pages, some of the 3rd, and then random stuff on the rest of the menu here and there). We were wishing after we brought more than just us.
  • Post #62 - September 9th, 2016, 11:10 am
    Post #62 - September 9th, 2016, 11:10 am Post #62 - September 9th, 2016, 11:10 am
    marothisu wrote:Awesome! Yeah, that is good stuff and pretty awesome they have it on the menu. I think anybody who likes sauces similar to Peking Duck sauce and smokey meat (Beef or Pork) should try it.


    There is also an excellent version of this dish that is served at Ed's Potsticker House. If you like the one at Homestyle Taste (which I do), it's worth your while to try the one at Ed's as well. Personally, I like that one even better than the Homestyle Taste version which is saying something.

    Ed's Potsticker House
    3139 S Halsted St
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (312) 326-6898
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #63 - September 9th, 2016, 12:29 pm
    Post #63 - September 9th, 2016, 12:29 pm Post #63 - September 9th, 2016, 12:29 pm
    stevez wrote:
    marothisu wrote:Awesome! Yeah, that is good stuff and pretty awesome they have it on the menu. I think anybody who likes sauces similar to Peking Duck sauce and smokey meat (Beef or Pork) should try it.


    There is also an excellent version of this dish that is served at Ed's Potsticker House. If you like the one at Homestyle Taste (which I do), it's worth your while to try the one at Ed's as well. Personally, I like that one even better than the Homestyle Taste version which is saying something.

    Ed's Potsticker House
    3139 S Halsted St
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (312) 326-6898


    Thanks for the recommendation. I've been meaning to try Ed's for awhile but haven't gotten around to it. Does the one at Ed's have a thinner pancake/pork cut than Homestyle?
  • Post #64 - September 9th, 2016, 3:55 pm
    Post #64 - September 9th, 2016, 3:55 pm Post #64 - September 9th, 2016, 3:55 pm
    Come on guys, it clearly says on the menu that it is a Smocked Pork Roll.
  • Post #65 - September 9th, 2016, 4:25 pm
    Post #65 - September 9th, 2016, 4:25 pm Post #65 - September 9th, 2016, 4:25 pm
    botd wrote:Come on guys, it clearly says on the menu that it is a Smocked Pork Roll.


    A tribute to the late great Steve Allen.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #66 - September 9th, 2016, 11:25 pm
    Post #66 - September 9th, 2016, 11:25 pm Post #66 - September 9th, 2016, 11:25 pm
    stevez wrote:
    marothisu wrote:Awesome! Yeah, that is good stuff and pretty awesome they have it on the menu. I think anybody who likes sauces similar to Peking Duck sauce and smokey meat (Beef or Pork) should try it.


    There is also an excellent version of this dish that is served at Ed's Potsticker House. If you like the one at Homestyle Taste (which I do), it's worth your while to try the one at Ed's as well. Personally, I like that one even better than the Homestyle Taste version which is saying something.

    Ed's Potsticker House
    3139 S Halsted St
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (312) 326-6898


    My parents always insist on Ed's and I eat it on the reg (unfortunately). We always order the smoked pork roll and it's been thick, chewy, and tough for years. Homestyle does it better.
  • Post #67 - October 14th, 2016, 1:08 pm
    Post #67 - October 14th, 2016, 1:08 pm Post #67 - October 14th, 2016, 1:08 pm
    My girlfriend's parents visited Chicago for the first time last weekend (loved the city). They're originally from Dongbei, but have lived in Shanghai for something like 15 years.

    Her dad was really excited when we showed him the menu because even in Shanghai, they don't have a lot of restaurants serving this style of food. We had lamb skewers, sliced pork leg, stewed fish (more like from szechuan), chicken iron pot dish, some dumplings, and a vegetable dish (Di San xian).

    They thought everything but the chicken dish was pretty damn authentic. They thought everything tasted good, including that chicken dish, but that it was the least authentic flavor wise. To be honest, my girlfriend and I a month earlier had the pork iron pot, which according to her was way more authentic taste wise than the chicken we had. Oh well..

    They thought the lamb skewers were really good and the dumplings tasted like you'd get homemade from your grandma (that's a good thing - but I still thing QXYD is better). They also thought the fish was good and the sliced pork leg was decent.

    Apparently her parents have tried numerous Dongbei restaurants in Shanghai, and many of them didn't pass their test. They said that this one passed their test more than most places in Shanghai, and is better than many they've had there even (which is amazing). Her dad would taste each dish and then tell me if it was OK to eat, as in if it was authentic or not. He said "OK" for every dish but that chicken one.

    The most amazing thing though was around the vegetable dish (Di San xian) we ordered. They told me it was so authentic here that it was more authentic than anything they've ever had in Shanghai for the same dish. I thought it was good but nothing amazing - however, it's amazing they said it's more authentic than anything they've gotten in Shanghai.


    On a side note, I was introduced to a Dongbei dessert the other night. My girlfriend's mom made it - basically chop up something like sweet potato, and then bring peanut oil + sugar to heat, and mix. When it's hot and you lift up a piece of sweet potato into the air, the sugar strings up (ala really cheesy pizza, but thinner). Dip it into water to break the sugar strand and eat it while hot. It's really, really good (really sugary though) but gets really hard within 5 minutes. We had to use a knife to cut it once it was cooled. Apparently they do it with all sorts of fruit like bananas and apples too. We were hoping Homestyle Taste would have it, but they don't. Really hoping that sometime they consider getting it. I wish you guys could have tasted what I tasted - apparently it is not the easiest thing to make even though the ingredients are simple. I think if a restaurant in Chicago did that and did it well, it would probably become a fad if people found out about it.
  • Post #68 - October 15th, 2016, 11:53 am
    Post #68 - October 15th, 2016, 11:53 am Post #68 - October 15th, 2016, 11:53 am
    This will be the final stop on our S Side centric Open House Chicago tour tomorrow, it will make all the walking worthwhile:)
  • Post #69 - October 15th, 2016, 1:49 pm
    Post #69 - October 15th, 2016, 1:49 pm Post #69 - October 15th, 2016, 1:49 pm
    Octarine wrote:This will be the final stop on our S Side centric Open House Chicago tour tomorrow, it will make all the walking worthwhile:)


    You or anyone else stopping through Rockefeller Chapel tomorrow, feel free to say hello, and if you come around 12:30 I may have some Rajun Cajun samosas available (password: "Gary's Chili Oil.")
  • Post #70 - October 15th, 2016, 2:33 pm
    Post #70 - October 15th, 2016, 2:33 pm Post #70 - October 15th, 2016, 2:33 pm
    On a side note, I was introduced to a Dongbei dessert the other night. My girlfriend's mom made it - basically chop up something like sweet potato, and then bring peanut oil + sugar to heat, and mix. When it's hot and you lift up a piece of sweet potato into the air, the sugar strings up (ala really cheesy pizza, but thinner). Dip it into water to break the sugar strand and eat it while hot. It's really, really good (really sugary though) but gets really hard within 5 minutes. We had to use a knife to cut it once it was cooled. Apparently they do it with all sorts of fruit like bananas and apples too. We were hoping Homestyle Taste would have it, but they don't. Really hoping that sometime they consider getting it. I wish you guys could have tasted what I tasted - apparently it is not the easiest thing to make even though the ingredients are simple. I think if a restaurant in Chicago did that and did it well, it would probably become a fad if people found out about it.

    i've made this dish many times, though not in years, using apple slices (i dont like bananas, and never thought about sweet potatoes!). it helps to have 3 people doing it: one to heat the fruit/veg., then one to dip in ice water, and one to roll in black sesame seeds. i just looked for the old chinese cookbook i used so i could confirm the exact recipe- but i must have given it away when i moved a few years ago...it's delicious, and great fun to make
  • Post #71 - October 16th, 2016, 1:58 am
    Post #71 - October 16th, 2016, 1:58 am Post #71 - October 16th, 2016, 1:58 am
    ^ Very nice. Do you know of anywhere in Chicago that serves it? The sweet potatoes with it are delicious - you should try it. Don't have the chunks too big, but not too small...really good (and I don't even love sweet potato usually).
  • Post #72 - October 16th, 2016, 9:46 am
    Post #72 - October 16th, 2016, 9:46 am Post #72 - October 16th, 2016, 9:46 am
    marothisu wrote:On a side note, I was introduced to a Dongbei dessert the other night. My girlfriend's mom made it - basically chop up something like sweet potato, and then bring peanut oil + sugar to heat, and mix. When it's hot and you lift up a piece of sweet potato into the air, the sugar strings up (ala really cheesy pizza, but thinner). Dip it into water to break the sugar strand and eat it while hot. It's really, really good (really sugary though) but gets really hard within 5 minutes. We had to use a knife to cut it once it was cooled. Apparently they do it with all sorts of fruit like bananas and apples too. We were hoping Homestyle Taste would have it, but they don't. Really hoping that sometime they consider getting it. I wish you guys could have tasted what I tasted - apparently it is not the easiest thing to make even though the ingredients are simple. I think if a restaurant in Chicago did that and did it well, it would probably become a fad if people found out about it.

    Glazed bananas actually were a fad in Chicago, but that was quite a while ago. In the 1970s, "Mandarin" and later "Hunan" restaurants became all the rage and virtually every one of the dozens of places that opened back then served glazed bananas for dessert. I wrote a brief history of these restaurants and even mentioned the bananas.

    Rene G wrote:Many of these restaurants served a roughly similar hodgepodge of a menu characterized by hot and sour soup, sizzling rice soup, moo shu pork, Peking duck and glazed bananas for dessert (often dumped from a pan into a bowl of ice water).

    marothisu wrote:Do you know of anywhere in Chicago that serves it?

    I believe Great Sea on Lawrence offers glazed bananas, apples and even sweet potatoes (menu).
  • Post #73 - October 16th, 2016, 12:44 pm
    Post #73 - October 16th, 2016, 12:44 pm Post #73 - October 16th, 2016, 12:44 pm
    I grew up on these (candied fruits, and also hard sugar ginger glazed iced cream, they make a big production of out of it with a crystal bowl of ice water at the table, and fire) at Tae Fu in Villa Park: https://taefurestaurant.com

    312 East St. Charles Road

    Still on the menu. They also have exceptional sizzling rice soup and above-average Mongolian Beef and egg rolls and a few back-of-house Korean style dishes on request.
  • Post #74 - October 16th, 2016, 12:54 pm
    Post #74 - October 16th, 2016, 12:54 pm Post #74 - October 16th, 2016, 12:54 pm
    Santander wrote:I grew up on these (candied fruits, and also hard sugar ginger glazed iced cream, they make a big production of out of it with a crystal bowl of ice water at the table, and fire) at Tae Fu in Villa Park: https://taefurestaurant.com

    312 East St. Charles Road

    Still on the menu. They also have exceptional sizzling rice soup and above-average Mongolian Beef and egg rolls and a few back-of-house Korean style dishes on request.

    Less than 30 minutes from Carol Stream, I am taking Mom2 there sometime soon!

    Thanks!

    Regards,
    CAthy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #75 - October 16th, 2016, 1:07 pm
    Post #75 - October 16th, 2016, 1:07 pm Post #75 - October 16th, 2016, 1:07 pm
    Glazed bananas was a big show stopper dessert at the late, great Abacus restaurant on Clark & Wrightwood. That, along with their egg rolls were their signature dishes. This was exactly the kind of place that Rene G wrote about upthread.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #76 - October 16th, 2016, 2:15 pm
    Post #76 - October 16th, 2016, 2:15 pm Post #76 - October 16th, 2016, 2:15 pm
    marothisu wrote:^ Very nice. Do you know of anywhere in Chicago that serves it? The sweet potatoes with it are delicious - you should try it. Don't have the chunks too big, but not too small...really good (and I don't even love sweet potato usually).

    thanks to reneG and santander, i don't have to reply to your request (i dont know any places!). but i'm not sure a recipe is even necessary. no oil was involved in my recipe; nor any batter. i think it was sugar syrup cooked to hard boil stage, then slices of fruit were quickly dunked, then dipped in black sesame seeds (opt.), then into iced water. it's possible that for the apple slices i dipped them in cornstarch before putting them into the sugar syrup...damn, i wish i had that cookbook....
  • Post #77 - October 17th, 2016, 8:51 am
    Post #77 - October 17th, 2016, 8:51 am Post #77 - October 17th, 2016, 8:51 am
    My understanding is that the caramel coated fruit/vegetable thing is still very popular in China, so I find it a bit strange that it seems relatively rare in Chicago.
  • Post #78 - October 17th, 2016, 9:35 am
    Post #78 - October 17th, 2016, 9:35 am Post #78 - October 17th, 2016, 9:35 am
    botd wrote:My understanding is that the caramel coated fruit/vegetable thing is still very popular in China, so I find it a bit strange that it seems relatively rare in Chicago.

    i know what you're referring to: but fruit with a hard, clear sugar glaze is a little different from caramel on battered fruit.
  • Post #79 - October 17th, 2016, 10:25 am
    Post #79 - October 17th, 2016, 10:25 am Post #79 - October 17th, 2016, 10:25 am
    I think I am talking about the same thing. Ba si, which Dongbei is known for, as seen in this image http://www.seriouseats.com/images/2015/03/20150323-dongbei-taro-robyn-lee.jpg with taro. You typically lightly caramelize sugar in oil before dunking already fried fruits/vegetables in it.
  • Post #80 - October 17th, 2016, 10:43 am
    Post #80 - October 17th, 2016, 10:43 am Post #80 - October 17th, 2016, 10:43 am
    botd wrote:I think I am talking about the same thing. Ba si, which Dongbei is known for, as seen in this image http://www.seriouseats.com/images/2015/03/20150323-dongbei-taro-robyn-lee.jpg with taro. You typically lightly caramelize sugar in oil before dunking already fried fruits/vegetables in it.

    i dont want to argue with you, but they arent the same. there's no carmelizing of the sugar and no batter. only a clear, hard sugar glaze on the fruit, and no oil is involved. the fruit arent cooked before being dipped.
  • Post #81 - October 17th, 2016, 6:00 pm
    Post #81 - October 17th, 2016, 6:00 pm Post #81 - October 17th, 2016, 6:00 pm
    What Joan is referring to sounds like Tanghulu . . . very common street snack in northern China . . . all over the streets of Beijing too. I usually noticed strawberries.
    I find the pastrami to be the most sensual of all the salted, cured meats. (Seinfeld)

    Twitter: brbinchicago
  • Post #82 - October 17th, 2016, 6:44 pm
    Post #82 - October 17th, 2016, 6:44 pm Post #82 - October 17th, 2016, 6:44 pm
    justjoan wrote:i dont want to argue with you, but they arent the same. there's no carmelizing of the sugar and no batter. only a clear, hard sugar glaze on the fruit, and no oil is involved. the fruit arent cooked before being dipped.


    As I remember the dish from back in the '70s & '80s, the fruit was not fried, but was briefly cooked in the sugar, sort of like Bananas Foster; just enough to warm through a bit and get completely coated with the sugar. The fruit was then dropped into ice water. The sugar formed a thin hard shell that shattered when bitten into or cut, not at all drippy like in the picture that botd posted.

    This does seem like the type of dish that could be open to lots of different interpretations. I doubt there's a single correct way to make it.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #83 - October 17th, 2016, 10:55 pm
    Post #83 - October 17th, 2016, 10:55 pm Post #83 - October 17th, 2016, 10:55 pm
    My girlfriend says the name of the sweet potato one is "Ba Si Di Gua" while the banana version would be "ba si xiang jiao". Botd has the correct one that my girlfriend's mom made. You cook the fruit/vegetable beforehand a little bit, yes.

    As a side note, we all had some Dongbei food tonight at a place in Flushing (Queens, NYC). Her parents thought Homestyle Taste in Chicago was much better and way more authentic than this one. As a side note, I had my first taste of silk worms tonight there - meh. We also had some of the ba si with taro and regular potato. Not bad.
  • Post #84 - October 17th, 2016, 11:30 pm
    Post #84 - October 17th, 2016, 11:30 pm Post #84 - October 17th, 2016, 11:30 pm
    Was it Fu Run? I love that place.
  • Post #85 - October 18th, 2016, 12:13 am
    Post #85 - October 18th, 2016, 12:13 am Post #85 - October 18th, 2016, 12:13 am
    marothisu wrote:My girlfriend's parents visited Chicago for the first time last weekend (loved the city). They're originally from Dongbei, but have lived in Shanghai for something like 15 years.

    Her dad was really excited when we showed him the menu because even in Shanghai, they don't have a lot of restaurants serving this style of food. We had lamb skewers, sliced pork leg, stewed fish (more like from szechuan), chicken iron pot dish, some dumplings, and a vegetable dish (Di San xian).

    They thought everything but the chicken dish was pretty damn authentic. They thought everything tasted good, including that chicken dish, but that it was the least authentic flavor wise. To be honest, my girlfriend and I a month earlier had the pork iron pot, which according to her was way more authentic taste wise than the chicken we had. Oh well..

    They thought the lamb skewers were really good and the dumplings tasted like you'd get homemade from your grandma (that's a good thing - but I still thing QXYD is better). They also thought the fish was good and the sliced pork leg was decent.

    Apparently her parents have tried numerous Dongbei restaurants in Shanghai, and many of them didn't pass their test. They said that this one passed their test more than most places in Shanghai, and is better than many they've had there even (which is amazing). Her dad would taste each dish and then tell me if it was OK to eat, as in if it was authentic or not. He said "OK" for every dish but that chicken one.

    The most amazing thing though was around the vegetable dish (Di San xian) we ordered. They told me it was so authentic here that it was more authentic than anything they've ever had in Shanghai for the same dish. I thought it was good but nothing amazing - however, it's amazing they said it's more authentic than anything they've gotten in Shanghai.


    On a side note, I was introduced to a Dongbei dessert the other night. My girlfriend's mom made it - basically chop up something like sweet potato, and then bring peanut oil + sugar to heat, and mix. When it's hot and you lift up a piece of sweet potato into the air, the sugar strings up (ala really cheesy pizza, but thinner). Dip it into water to break the sugar strand and eat it while hot. It's really, really good (really sugary though) but gets really hard within 5 minutes. We had to use a knife to cut it once it was cooled. Apparently they do it with all sorts of fruit like bananas and apples too. We were hoping Homestyle Taste would have it, but they don't. Really hoping that sometime they consider getting it. I wish you guys could have tasted what I tasted - apparently it is not the easiest thing to make even though the ingredients are simple. I think if a restaurant in Chicago did that and did it well, it would probably become a fad if people found out about it.


    I am not splitting hairs here. Promise.

    I've been fascinated by the use of the word "authentic" in this post. Are we supposed to take it as synonymous with delicious, or is it really supposed to be more of a descriptive comparison--i.e., whether it "passes the test" of having the same qualities as the same dish made in China?
  • Post #86 - October 18th, 2016, 10:50 am
    Post #86 - October 18th, 2016, 10:50 am Post #86 - October 18th, 2016, 10:50 am
    chezbrad wrote:I am not splitting hairs here. Promise.

    I've been fascinated by the use of the word "authentic" in this post. Are we supposed to take it as synonymous with delicious, or is it really supposed to be more of a descriptive comparison--i.e., whether it "passes the test" of having the same qualities as the same dish made in China?


    To them, it meant prepared correctly, correct ingrediants, etc - i.e. similar to something you'd find in China. For example, we had a chicken iron pot dish - the one they thought was least authentic. They didn't think the chicken was nearly tender enough and the taste of it wasn't wholly right. They still thought it tasted good though. The one they thought was super authentic, they thought it was super authentic because of how the vegetables were cooked. I didn't think the taste was out of this world, and they thought it was great (not something they were like "omg!" about). They said it was very authentic because of the texture/consistency of the vegetables after cooking and the balance of flavors so it was correct.
  • Post #87 - October 18th, 2016, 10:51 am
    Post #87 - October 18th, 2016, 10:51 am Post #87 - October 18th, 2016, 10:51 am
    cilantro wrote:Was it Fu Run? I love that place.


    Nope. It was Dou Man Jiang (hidden place - they serve both NE Chinese and some Korean food). We've been to Fu Run before too and my girlfriend thought Homestyle Taste is more authentic and better tasting. She wasn't very impressed with Fu Run but was very impressed with HT.
  • Post #88 - September 24th, 2017, 8:17 am
    Post #88 - September 24th, 2017, 8:17 am Post #88 - September 24th, 2017, 8:17 am
    10 of us dined at Homestyle yesterday Saturday, no one else in restaurant at 11:30am when we arrived but place was packed by the time we left at 1pm.

    Smoked Pork Roll
    Tofu w/preserved egg
    Cumin lamb bone-in stir fry
    Hand tear beef jerky over chilies
    Stir fry spinach w/peanuts & vinegar
    colorful wide noodles with a sauce of vinegar and mustard
    poached fish in chili oil

    having had both bone in and boneless versions of cumin lamb, there is no comparison, bone in has so much more flavor

    the poached fish was on a special board, fish was cooked well but the chili oil just wasn't that luxurious ruby red stuff of love, more like bland oil with lots of chopped chilies on top, so much that the waitstaff actually scooped some off prior to serving. When we were leaving, the table next to us had a fish that had been scored then flash fried, that looked promising.

    a big downer was the addition of French fries to the hand tear beef jerky (mixed in with the chilies & beef), not happy with that addition at all.

    at $11.50 per person (which included tip $), no doubt it is a delicious value, I just won't order the beef jerky or poached fish.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #89 - September 24th, 2017, 8:36 am
    Post #89 - September 24th, 2017, 8:36 am Post #89 - September 24th, 2017, 8:36 am
    The fries in the hand tear beef have always been there.
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #90 - September 24th, 2017, 12:02 pm
    Post #90 - September 24th, 2017, 12:02 pm Post #90 - September 24th, 2017, 12:02 pm
    Jazzfood wrote:The fries in the hand tear beef have always been there.
    on previous visits, the fries were not in the dish. I feel my memory is solid on this as a couple friends in yesterday's group who came with me on prior visits remarked on the addition of the fries as well.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.

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