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Category archives: Vietnamese

Huong Binh

One of my top International District restaurants is Huong Binh.

Ten plus years ago, my Vietnamese friend brought me there for their famous grilled meat.

Ten plus years later, I still believe they have the best grilled pork and pork balls.

Located in Ding How shopping center, there was no way one would miss Huong Binh with the most colorful display of snacks, candies, cookies and to-go food outside the restaurant.


I still remembered when all those display used to be around the cashier inside the restaurant; they piled so high that it was difficult to find the cashier.


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Vietnamese Bun Versus

Bun is the cold Vietnamese noodle salad that are commonly seen in many Vietnamese restaurants around town.

Pho Bahn Mi opened up in Redmond, adding another Vietnamese restaurant option.

The oldest Vietnamese restaurant in that area is probably Pho Hoa, which recently underwent a full face lift, and added a bubble tea counter called Jazen Tea.

My usual Bun is the option with fried roll and grilled pork.

How do the 2 Bun from Pho Bahn Mi and Pho Hoa stack up?

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Rainier BBQ

We went to Rainier BBQ with a big group of friends – perfect to try the many dishes they had to offer!

Tucked deep in Rainier valley, it was easy to get to especially with the new light rail system serving the neighborhood.

We were confused when we first arrived.

Rainier BBQ’s deli was next door to the restaurant at ground level.

We walked in and thought it was too small to be the restaurant.

Little did we know that the entrance to the restaurant was next door to the deli, down the stairway into the basement.

We ordered a bunch and the first dish was most certainly a bang!

Ong choy salad.

WP_20140629_12_25_58_ProI never knew that ong choy, the Chinese hollow vegetables, can be eaten raw.

The vegetables were shredded thinly, probably to reduce the fibrousness of the stalk.

The resulting vegetables were crunchy and fresh.

Topped with well marinated and tender beef with onions and herbs, and the added flavor of peanuts, it was a fantastic mix of sweet, salty and sour on the tongue.

They added some fried bits in it to give extra crunch.

It was an excellent and unique dish.

No wonder they called the dish their “famous ong choy salad” on the menu.

While ooing and ahhing on the salad, my drink arrived.

I had to try the soda with egg yolk and condensed milk.

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Pashmak and Yeh Yeh’s

The same trip that I discovered Faloudeh from the Persian market, I also bought Sesame Pashmak — another traditional Iranian dessert made of sesame, sugar, pistachio and vanillin.


I loved the prominent sesame flavor in this dessert; and it was the texture that was really fun.

It reminded me of a traditional Chinese candy that I used to enjoy growing up called dragon beard candy, 龍鬚糖.

Dragon beard candy looked like a cocoon made of pulled super fine sugar strands.

Inside the candy, one would find finely chopped peanuts and sometimes coconut.

Having dragon beard candy was a textural journey of its own; and it was considered a culinary art of China.

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