5 turkey alternatives for Thanksgiving in San Gabriel Valley-San Gabriel Valley Tribune

2021-12-13 19:17:06 By : Ms. Danae Wang

Is it time to rethink Thanksgiving Turkey?

You may have heard that due to the pandemic, there will be a shortage of frozen and fresh small birds. This means that unless your turkey is a 25-pound turkey prepared by your Aunt Matilda for dozens of friends and family, you may find your refrigerator full of leftovers. Leftovers, like guests, will lose their appeal in a few days.

Frankly, I have always liked smaller birds, they seem to taste better and have a better texture. But, like many of us, my turkey cooking skills are somewhat limited. God knows, I have encountered Thanksgiving birds over the years, which makes it a very reasonable choice to go out for Chinese food.

My mother, bless her, never fully grasped the trick to thaw turkey. She became impatient and put it in the still frozen oven. The result is a bird that looks good on the outside, beautiful, brown, etc.-but inside is an iceberg.

However, that year was not as disturbing as the year I joined some friends who forgot to make any fillings. So, they filled the turkey with brown rice. Uncooked brown rice. After the turkey is cooked, the rice expands. The subsequent explosion destroyed the turkey-and most of the inside of the oven. We had vegetables for dinner that year.

Cooking turkey can be an anxious event. This is why for some smaller groups, smaller birds work well—rather than 25-pound monsters, 12-pound critters are easier to control. Except, as I said, the smaller birds are in short supply this year.

This brings us back to the first Thanksgiving in 1621. During that meal, the turkey might have been eaten because the wild turkey ran wildly in the woods. Culinary historians believe that although turkey may have been eaten, it may not have been eaten. It is more likely to be a feast of ducks and geese, swans and passenger pigeons. There are freshly slaughtered deer, and seafood-especially cod, sea bass, eel, lobster and my fish of choice, salmon. Together with cornbread and porridge.

The Wampanoag people know their waters very well. They know how to grill fish properly—especially salmon. Although "The New Yorker" writer Calvin Trillin has long advocated replacing turkey with lobster, I advocate using salmon instead of turkey. Salmon is easier to cook than turkey—and it tastes better the next day. very good. (As far as the filling is concerned, cooking alone in the baking tray will give you a crisper creation, not a lump of soggy... stuff.)

Although eating a turkey meal in a restaurant always seems a bit wrong-a salmon feast is great for me. In any case, the choice of restaurants that provide appropriate turkey meals is limited. But when it comes to salmon, there are many choices—and it's delicious, tastier, and most delicious.

If I can persuade my family to celebrate Thanksgiving in the restaurant, these are the salmon that I will breathe in — and I am very happy. If I can't do it, I will grill a salmon for myself the next day. Although the world will risk life and limbs during Black Friday, I will get my Omega-3 and Vitamin B12. This may help the pilgrims get through the winter.

The Benediction by Toast (Puente Hills Mall, 17501 Colima Road, City of Industry; 626-225-3642, www.thebenediction.la) is an American breakfast restaurant that uses steroids-recreating many of our elders who only eat breakfast Comes with a very 21st century spin. This is a crazy concept-and it's also very good.

If you show up on Sunday, please look forward to waiting at the tables on and off the terrace, because The Benediction has discovered a group of locals eager to enjoy breakfast in Brobdingnagian proportions. This is not a restaurant where you can grab a bite to eat, but a restaurant that can reduce your hunger in the morning. The food here overflows from the plates, and every inch of the space is filled with eggs, potatoes, and mainly Holland sauce on English muffins.

There are more on the menu than 13 egg benedict variants. But that is the dominant dish. They must load their hollandaise in a truck here.

There is a classic, made with smoked shoulder bacon with pecans. One is made with corned beef hash, and the other is made with lobster. Santa Barbara has Norwegian smoked salmon, capers and red onions. There are two surf and turf models, both with lobster and steak. One Holland sauce was replaced by Béarnaise. There are three types of vegetarian food, one is grilled mushrooms, one is tomato and spinach, and the other is broccoli and asparagus. (Vegetarians, as long as eggs are still part of the diet. So is butter.)

But what attracts me more is the four twists and turns on the avocado toast-this is Benedict's version of a healthy life, for those who don't want the yolk and butter of hollandaise sauce to run in their blood.

Since avocado was once called "the poor man's butter," it may have been used as a spread long before. Regardless of the source, this is the standard in California today and is usually done in only one way. But in The Benediction (of course), it comes with heirloom tomatoes and garlic salt, three eggs and chopped bacon, Alaskan red salmon, cucumber salad and red onion.

As long as there is avocado and toast, it is avocado toast. Although I do like the concept of bacon. crispy! Of course there is salmon, which restores my soul enough to actually shop in the adjacent shopping center.

Derby (233 E. Huntington Drive, Arcadia; 626-447-2430, www.thederbyarcadia.com)-which will celebrate its 100th anniversary next year-connects many eras in Southern California. It connects an era when tycoons, pushers, and swingers appeared after the Santa Anita race near the road, and when Derby was the destination for all of us.

As an inevitable result, it connects the age of studio systems with the age of Netflix and Hulu. It also connects an era when beef is eaten in large quantities with an era when salads and vegetables finally get the respect they deserve—when eating meat marks your success that cannot be ignored. Although not excessive; no one would confuse Derby with a vegetarian destination.

If you have never been to Derby, please give yourself some extra time to peruse the souvenirs and take a deep breath...history. The history that really started in 1938, when the greatest jockey George "Iceman" Woolf bought the original The Proctor Tavern, dreaming of turning it into a gathering place for jockeys and racing fans... the source of retirement income will be Allow him to look back on his career in the Hall of Fame." If George Woolf had not died in 1946, he was removed from his mount in the fourth game of Santa Anita. "Please Me" (Please Me) fell up and down, this may be the case.

George is gone. But Derby exists as a monument-when you enter, he will greet you like the etched glass image on the door when you enter, surrounded by "the home of George'Iceman' Woolf". The dishes on the menu are as respectable as the restaurant itself-dishes under the headings such as "At the Starting Point", "Favorites of Sea Biscuit", "George Woolf's Steak Winner" and "Photo Finished".

This is a menu, such as the "signature" crab cakes, where crab pieces are actually recognizable (less than you think!), served with a very delicious grilled corn sauce, topped with avocado and used as a dipping sauce The spicy aioli-absolutely modern.

Shrimp cocktails, French onion soup, homemade salads or fried squid are not modern at all-although the crispy brussels sprouts and balsamic vinegar are definitely not what it was.

Of course, there are premium beef ribs, bone-in rib eyes, breaded chicken, bacon-wrapped fish fillets, and a selection of salmon dishes-shrimp, crab and salmon. This dish comes from a long, long time ago gourmet chronicle. . Every bite is full of nostalgia.

Nixon Steakhouse (13033 Philadelphia St., Whittier; 562-698-3355, the-nixon.com) actually consists of several parts. There is a main restaurant with practical decoration and a bar on one side with a pleasant old-school bar atmosphere. This is a place to taste cocktails such as "Reason for Divorce" (whiskey, apple spice, Angostura bitters) and "Army vs. Navy" (gin, lemon and bitters).

There is also a "Flying Jenny" made with vodka, hibiscus tea and ginger beer, served in a four-person copper punch bowl. There is a long list of Kentucky bourbon and Kentucky rye bars.

In the adjacent El Silencio bar, the specialty is Mezcal. This may or may not be suitable for fried squid with "aged hot sauce", which is delivered to your table in an unmarked bottle. Before dipping it on any plate, I asked for a spoon to taste it. I did a great job-it is not only getting old, but also very hot. a lot of.

The twists and turns continue quickly: fermented honey pork chicharrones, maple date jam bacon, corn thorpe and salsa verde roasted bone marrow, mango and roasted coconut beef salad-and the strangest little gem lettuce salad, scattered with crumbly cotija cheese and oversized The croutons, lettuce leaves are not cut, but whole leaves, making this dish look a bit like a green paper on a plate after being opened.

There are also watermelon and fried chicken salad. Salmon-our preferred dish-comes with clams and pozole. The tuna comes with scrambled spam. Charred Brussels sprouts with vanilla butter.

Five steaks are free from twists and turns—they are just very good cuts of beef carefully prepared. But they are not salmon. I am craving salmon this Thanksgiving.

Crooked Gaff Kitchen & Oyster Bar (13103 Penn St., Whittier; 562-632-1162, www.crookedgaff.com) is a cheerful modern community association on one level, where you can go for a cold draught beer, and A little happy hour snack. But this would seriously underestimate this place. Because this is a good place to enjoy some dishes now, served in a rough environment, there are many benches and stools, not even tablecloths.

You are not here to show off. But you will always go here. At a very favorable price.

Consider the yellow fin tuna tostada-a slice of fresh fish, cut into large chunks, turned into a poke, and placed on an oversized tostada, plus mashed avocado, a spicy orange Sauce, and a second peanut-flavored salad dressing. In its own way, this is a perfect dish—ahi is full of portions, avocados and oranges contrast well with the sharpness of poke, the salad next to it Provides very delicious salads.

Many tables have a large portion of crispy squid with almost enough cocktail sauce; if you are too enthusiastic about your spread, you may need to ask for more. I'm not sure if I have ever encountered grilled corn, this is corn preparation at the moment-corn coated with jalapeno mayonnaise, cotija cheese and spicy Tajin powder and made with crab. It's hard to say what it is. A dish? seafood rice? Orama, the spice that goes with beer? In any case, it is unique. Doing this is good for the kitchen.

There is a proper, mostly old school New England Clam Chowder, because if you have a seafood house desire, chowder is essential. On the other hand, the "small plates" part became very eclectic. There are pork belly buns, carbonara pasta seasoned with nduja pork, pork cheek tacos and Baja shrimp tacos-making this place a place in China, Italy and Mexico, all in one menu section.

The "big plate" settled down well. Fried fish and chips, sweet Chilean prawns (with tiny fideo pasta), our beloved pan-fried salmon with mushroom risotto, pork chops, flat iron steak, double cheese burger and fries.

There is also a cheese platter, which does not seem to be related to the rest of the menu. There is also Caesar salad, because you have to eat some salad. (And wish them no kale!)

Desserts include sweet tater tots and tres leches bread pudding. Or, you can have another beer. As they say: Beer... is no longer just breakfast.

Consider the seafood menu of Fishwives (88 N. Fair Oaks Ave., Old Pasadena; 626-219-6199, www.fishwives.com), where you can find the real fishy smell—a little seafood heaven. Really, all that is missing is the salty Pacific, slapped on the shore outside the restaurant, rather than the car rushing north to the highway entrance. Okay; you can't always get what you want, can you now?

There are 10 oysters on the menu, which you can check on the abbreviation list-choose singles, half dozen or dozen. The names of these small animals are Shigoku, Musty Point and Kusshi. The paper menu also offers raw clams, Peruvian scallops and sea scallops, as well as cooked prawns, black mussels and Maine lobsters, half or whole.

If you feel blushing, you can choose one of the seafood samplers, from The Fish to The Wives, to The Supreme — 15 oysters, 6 clams, 16 shrimps, 6 scallops, 20 mussels are available for you And 1 lobster. The menu tells us that five to six people are enough. Maybe it's a supermodel. But not the rest of us; I think the second is right.

Seafood is everywhere-and very good, not picky at all. There is a variant of shrimp cocktail, made from Dungeness crab and shrimp, which will let you enjoy the standard shrimp cocktail of a steak house forever.

Three fish ceviche — halibut, amberjack, and beloved salmon — named after Tokyo’s magnificent Tsukiji Fish Market, is a simple and perfect exercise. Just like sashimi, it includes campachi, halibut, scallops, elegant and perfect salmon and sea urchin. I like the existence of uni, which is a statement of sashimi plates for those who truly love the sea.

How about those fried oysters wrapped in mustard eggs? It mixes two favorite dishes on one plate and seasons them with Old Bay, which makes the pencil shavings taste great. How far can one person go?

There is a basket of stammers, and half a Maine lobster is for fun. The fish and chips are very crispy... Grilled Spanish octopus with squid ink vinegar, quite exotic... There are also Maine Lobster Roll and Dungeness Crab Roll, from competing rolls on the other side.

The choice of salmon is limited. But perfect in their way. The cooked salmon is great. But raw salmon is beyond description.

Merrill Shindler is a freelance dining critic in Los Angeles. Email mreats@aol.com.

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