Well, we went to eat and eat we did. We started our trip at La Poutine for lunch. Incroyable. Le sigh. I had the Cowboy - hamburger meat, cheese curds and beef gravy. The Mister had the Supreme - cheese curds, smoky bacon bits, sour cream, green onions, and traditional Quebec-style sauce. Home fries. Oh my.
Then we shopped off the calories in preparation for our gut-busting, so good but so bad, late night meal. It's basically the reason we made the trek to Edmonton this weekend. Kings Noodle and Hot Pot. If you've never experience hot pot, I will try my best to do it justice. It is usually an all you can eat affair where you will initially be presented with a checklist/menu. The menu consists of a number of different soups ranging from medicinal, herbal, plain chicken broth, spicy, and blow your mind spicy that you will suffer the effects from for days. We always get the spiciest, Szechuan Spicy Mala broth, but decided to do half spicy and half chicken broth this time. We are learning from our mistakes. There will also be a number of raw meats and fish, vegetables, noodles, and every kind of tofu I could dream of. There are a few hot items too, we ordered the wings and a small bowl of steamed rice.
Once you've placed your order it's time to make the sauce. They have a sauce station where you can mix different condiments into a dipping sauce for your cooked foods. You can choose between fresh cut chillies, soya sauce, fish sauce, sesame paste, vinegar, and green onion/ginger oil, to name a few.
By the time you have made your dips the server usually brings your soup to your table and turns on your burner (each table has a hot plate built in). Soon after your soup has begun to boil a little cart is wheeled out overflowing with everything you've ordered. Where to start?! Tofu goes in right away because you can't over cook it. Vegetables should be cooked in the mild broth as they seem to carry the heat of the spicy broth so much more. You are given little netted spoon to put your meats in to ensure they don't get lost and over cooked. We had lamb, beef, fish, cuttlefish, baby octopus, tripe, more lamb, every kind of tofu ordered, enoki mushrooms (an absolute must), watercress, and on choy. I'm sure I'm forgetting something.
You can get ice cream for dessert too, if you're crazy. We were too full to even think about ice cream, and decided to leave as soon as we were finished, before the hangover set in. I'm not kidding, soup that spicy makes you drunk. I was dizzy and had a headache by the time we got to the car. But it's so worth it.
Bring on the Pepto.
After a shaky start to the morning, we opted to skip breakfast. Dim Sum is our usual Saturday morning fare, but we thought it best to save our stomachs for lunch, before we hit the road to come back. After we pushed our way through the crowds at T&T grocery we had worked up an appetite. The quickest choice was Pho Hoa, adjacent to T&T. When I say quick, I mean this is what fast food was meant to be. Speed of light fast. The menus and tea are placed on your table before you're even seated. You merely make eye contact with the servers and they take your order. They walk to the kitchen and walk back out with your soup. Hot, fresh, cheap, overflowing bowls of flavorful pho. Tripe, tendon, fatty flank, any option an adventurous eater could want in his pho. It's not my mother-in-law's, but it fills the void.
|Lemon drink with sugar.|