Super Duper Fat Tuesday

Tuesday, February 5th, 2008 | All Things, Eats, Friends

Is it still only Tuesday? So far this week, there’s already been song and dance, thrilling victory and joyous celebration… and tonight, coinciding with Super Duper Tuesday and the traditional excess associated with Mardi Gras, our long-planned, pre-Chinese New Year feast at Chinatown’s Amazing 66.

A dozen friends, new and old, gathered in the restaurant’s lower level. Early in, it was established that we would place ourselves (willingly, happily) in SL’s capable ordering hands, and just eat whatever food was placed before us this evening. So began the parade of deliciousness — off and on the menu. A platter of batter-fried seafood, sauteed pea shoots, pan-fried noodles with seafood, braised E-Fu noodles with black mushroom (for longevity), and this, the first of two restaurant specialties that required advance ordering: Short Rib Beef in a Pumpkin. Yes: that’s short rib beef! In a pumpkin! Was ever there more a delightful combination of words spoken? The dish was brought out to the table in one glorious piece, with chunks of steaming, lightly curry-spiced meat exploding tantalizingly out the top of the hollowed out squash. Our glossy-tressed waiter, brandishing a large chef’s knife, made quick work of the soft, pumpkin flesh before our eyes.

Short Rib Beef in a Pumpkin

Salad Walnut Prawns — a classic dish made up of the seemingly strange combination of deep-fried jumbo prawns, slathered in a sweet mayonnaise, and laid over a bed of dressed mixed fruits, broccoli and candied walnuts. Tasty, though.

Walnut Shrimp

And the second show-stopper of the evening: the House Special Crispy Chicken Stuffed with Sticky Rice. Essentially, a whole chicken, deboned and de-…fleshed(?), crammed with a combination of sausage-studded sticky rice, and then deep-fried and meticulously reassembled into the general shape a chicken, albeit a rather flat one. Head included, of course — to symbolize wholeness and togetherness.

House Special Crispy Chicken

There were more dishes, selected for their symbolic auspiciousness: another chicken, roasted, and topped with preserved vegetables. A whole steamed flounder; the Chinese word for “fish” is a homonym for “abundance”. And an oyster casserole, to bring in “good things” for the coming year.

Amazing 66 spread

We ate our fill — or perhaps just beyond — and finished with a round of orange wedges (for wealth) and bowls of red bean tong shui (sweet dessert soup). How a few of us still managed after all that to squeeze in a post-dinner trip to the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory can best be attributed to a new year’s miracle.

Though when it comes to such temptations, I align myself with New York‘s Insatiable Critic Gael Greene, who declares quite rightly: “I shall never trust anyone who doesn’t love ice cream.

Chinese New Year dragons

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There are 4 Comments ... Super Duper Fat Tuesday

February 14, 2008

That really was an amazing dinner! I think we should go every Fat Tuesday.

February 14, 2008

I’m hungry again.

February 15, 2008

Was this to celebrate the Chinese New Year? Happy Year of the Rat, everyone.

February 15, 2008

Sun Nien Fai Lok!
Yes, a pre-Chinese New Year dinner with friends. I was happy that the feasting was scheduled before Lent.

Go for it ...