Jang Mo Jib (Mother-in-Law) Korean Restaurant

Updated: 3rd Feb 2015; This restaurant is closed.

Someone else’s rice cake looks always bigger
~ Korean Proverb

Helen was telling Suanne about a good Korean restaurant that we absolutely must try. She told us that the restaurant is located behind the Sheraton on Alexandra Road and is called something like Mother-in-law Restaurant. She also told us something interesting about the Korean culture — when the husband visits the in-laws, the husband is normally treated very well … so well that the mother-in-law will prepare a feast for the son-in-law. Hence, the best feast is referred to as the mother-in-law special. (Any Korean able to verify this?)

It was really confusing for us locating this place. It is because the English name of this restaurant we went to is called the Jang Mo Jib Restaurant. We couldn’t read Korean but at least Suanne recognized the small Chinese translation on the signboard.

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Walking in, we were impressed because the decor was very nice with large wall-to-wall pictures of Korean lifestyles. Helen told us the price for each dish were on the average $7-$8 and looking at the settings in the restaurant, it sure looked more expensive. Reading the menu, most of the dishes were indeed as Helen said although there were some dishes that were over $20 per person. We stuck to the cheaper dishes and ordered three different dishes.

Sul Lung Thang (Soup)

The Sul Lung Tang is a soup of cow bones and meat, simmered for several hours in a jumbo Korean iron pot until the soup is milky-white. This dish is served with two smaller bowls of coarse salt and chopped green onions. The coarse salt is used to season the soup depending on how you like it. Without the salt, the soup is quite bland.

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The soup also has some glass noodle and thinly sliced beef. Serving is large and more than enough for an adult. If you have never tried the Sul Lung Thang, you should. This is the restaurant’s signature dish. Price? $7.95.

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Hou Lok Restaurant on Cambie, Richmond

We all like lamb; each has a different way of cooking it.
~ Chinese Proverb

Ever had one of those days when you have planned to eat out but do not know where to go? Well, Suanne always insists that we eat out on the weekends because she says that since I get the weekend off work, she deserves the weekend off herself too. Last weekend we cruised along No 3 Road and were not sure where we were heading to. I came across this little unassuming place right across from the new Aberdeen Mall (and just right next to the T&T Supermarket) along Cambie.

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We were early and were their first customer for dinner. Needless to say, service were prompt. You tend to know that the food is really authentic when you see tacky looking hand written menus plastered all over the place — the Hou Lok Restaurant was one such place.

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We ordered the Chicken Ball in Szechuan sauce. This is spicy and is cooked with lots of onions and green pepper. We liked the gravy/sauce in particular — goes great with steamed rice.

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Pearl Balls

A pearl is worthless as long as it is in its shell.
~ Native American Proverb

Here is the other dish that Winnie showed us how to make in our cooking class this week. She called it the Pearl Ball, which is basically meat ball wrapped in glutinous rice. The dish derives it’s name from the translucent appearance of the glutinous rice in a ball shape.

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Ingredients
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1/2 lb fish paste
  • 2 tablespoons dry shrimp, soaked and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons finely diced carrot
  • 2 tablespoons chopped shiitake mushroom
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped scallion
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup glutinous rice, soaked in cold water for at least an hour

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Bean Curd Rolls

Paper can’t wrap up a fire.
~ Chinese Proverb

Today, Winnie showed us how to make Bean Curd Roll in the cooking club. The Bean Curd Roll can be eaten hot from the steamer or deep fried.

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Ingredients

The Pork Mixture/Fillings

  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 cup carrot, finely diced
  • 1 cup water chestnuts, finely diced
  • 1 cup black wood ear, soaked and finely diced
  • 2 tablespoon five spice powder
  • 2.5 tablespoon chopped scallions
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Maggi seasoning sauce
  • 1 teaspoon spice salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sweet potato starch

The Wrappings

  • 2 pieces bean curd skin
  • 1 cup chopped scallions

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Sweet Soy Pudding (Tou Foo Fa)

Tou Foo Fa or Douhua (in Mandarin), is a soft and tofu dessert. Tou Foo Fa is made by coagulating soy milk into curds. Tou Foo Fa is usually served warm in sweet syrup but many people also like it chilled.

When I grew up in Malaysia, it was a very common hawker food where the vendors walk from house to house screaming “Tou — Fooo — Faaa — Tou — Jeong — Sui”. We look forward to this which they usual come around in the afternoon. These days no one sells it this way anymore. It was quite common that this pudding is made in a big wooden barrel.

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In Canada, you may find Tou Foo Fa only in specialty tofu stores. However, the more common soy milk can be found in many groceries stores like Safeway, the Superstore, and Save-On-Food. I learned how to make Tou Foo Fa from soymilk from a friend in a home bible study group and have since made Tou Foo Fa for the family. Arkensen is a great fan of Tou Foo Fa. He enjoys it cold.

The biggest challenge in making Tou Foo Fa is that almost all steps must be followed correctly or else it would turn out too watery. Tou Foo Fa is supposed to be soft and smooth like puddings.

Ingredients
  • 1 litre of sweetened soy milk
  • 1.5 teaspoons of gypsum powder (熟石膏粉)
  • 1.5 teaspoons of cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon of hot water

The above ingredients is sufficient to make servings for four.

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Beef Stroganoff

Nothing improves the taste of pasta more than a good appetite.
~ Italian Proverb

Ben went with me for grocery shopping two weeks ago and saw Stroganoff sauce in a bottle on the shelves. He asked that I try this out. The instruction on the bottle seems simple and does look like something that the boys would like.

Beef Stroganoff, in its simplest form, is simply tender beef with a mushroom and sour cream sauce served over noodles, or even rice. The current accepted history of this dish dates back to the 1890s when a chef working for Count Pavel Alexandrovich Stroganov, a famous Russian general, invented the recipe for a cooking competition in St. Petersburg.

I used egg white pasta to go with the Beef Stroganoff.

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Ingredients
  • 1 bottle (400ml) of Stroganoff cooking sauce
  • 1 package (340g) of egg white pasta
  • 1 lb sirloin steak
  • 1 can of mushroom pieces
  • cilantro for garnishing

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For those who loves beef stroganoff, you will like this Hamburger Stroganoff from scratch too.

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Rice Krispies Squares

A good breakfast cannot take the place of the evening meal.
~ Chinese Proverb

This week, Nanzaro wanted to make something for his brother’s birthday party and decided to make Rice Krispies Squares for him. We bought some “Christmas Special” package of Rice Krispies which comes with red and green rice krispies last Christmas and did not use it until now. Anyway, it makes very pretty Rice Krispies Squares, much better than the single brownish rice krispies.

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Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup margarine or butter
  • 1 250g package regular marshmallows
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
  • 6 cups Rice Krispies cereal

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Dim Sum at Sun Sui Wah

Words that come from the heart stay warm three winters long.
~ Chinese Proverb

Panos slept over last night at our place and since we planned to go out for dim sum on this Saturday morning, we brought him along too. Panos has never been to a dim sum place before. We told him stories about eggs dunked in horse urine, chicken feet, beef tendon and all — he took it in good stride and told us he’ll try it all! 🙂

We went to the Sun Sui Wah Restaurant in Richmond just across from the Lansdowne Mall. It’s a very busy restaurant, especially in the weekend. We went early just as it opened before the weekend crowds starts streaming in.

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Dim Sum is a Chinese light meal or brunch, eaten sometime from morning-to-early afternoon with family or friends. Dim sum consists of a wide spectrum of choices, from sweet to salty. It has combination of meat, vegetables, and seafood. It is usually served in a small basket or on a small dish, depending on the type of dim sum. Dim Sum is a Cantonese term, literally translated as “choose heart”, meaning “choose to one’s heart’s content”. It may also be derived from the words “yat dim sum yi, meaning a “little token”.

Dim sum dishes can be ordered from a menu or sometimes the food is wheeled around on a mobile cart by servers. Traditionally, the cost of the meal is calculated based on the number and size of dishes left on the table.

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Char Siew Pau
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Dumplings
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Chicken feet and Beef tripe

Some modern dim sum restaurants record the dishes on a bill at the table. Servers in some restaurants use different stamps so that sales statistics for each server can be recorded. (more…)

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