My Spring Break Adventure

two adjacent cups of bubble tea

Image by: Nadine

Now, it is the last few weeks of the spring semester and while many are preparing to take their final as well as completing a couple last assignment before the summer break is officially here. Although, school has been on a recess for the past week and a half, school is now back in a full swing of things. I thoroughly enjoyed the spring recess by visiting many places in the city. Manhattan has such a vast amount of restaurants and shops that you can literally travel the world by just walking a few blocks. My grandmother had expressed her deepest desire of wanting to spend time with me and my sisters over the spring break. While we were struggling to figure out what we should do…going to Manhattan was the best bet. It had become a place that you can essentially do anything…there are so many activities to partake in…the choices are endless.

With my being in the hospitality management major, it has helped me to become more culturally aware and to gain a better appreciation for different cuisines all over the world. My grandmother was eager for whatever we had planned to do as long as we were spending time together. I think what most people do not realize is that New York really is a haven for everything; it just needs to be sought out. As I get older, I find that I only begin to appreciate New York City that much more, I am able to understand how great the city truly is and why so many people visit here. We finally decided to take our grandmother to one of the many places we used to readily visit when we were younger…one of the best spots in Manhattan…Union Square.

And the one thing that I absolutely love doing is trying new food but this time, it was my grandmother’s turn. We decided to take her to Asia for two days, every single thing that we ate was Asian inspired. Our first stop was bubble tea…my sisters and I have become lightly addicted to bubble tea which is Taiwanese and not just any bubble tea but Vivi’s Bubble Tea.  So we decided to take our grandmother there in order for her to experience it as well. She ordered the ginger milk tea with bubbles and I ordered the honeydew milk tea with bubbles while my sisters respective ordered the tiramisu slush with bubbles and Thai milk tea with bubbles. My grandmother loved the tea but wasn’t too fond of the bubbles. The bubbles that are used in the tea are actually boiled tapioca pearls. They are boiled in brown sugar and water then afterwards they are slightly cooled and can be added to the tea. My grandmother was not a huge fan of it but she did love the tea as she has always loved tea. She was a good sport about it even though the bubbles were not a favorite of hers. All in all, it was a great first stop on our trip. But the adventure seemed to have continued, and I couldn’t wait for what was in store next.

Why I Love Thai Food

If you ask my friends or boyfriend, “what’s Jessica’s favorite cuisine/type of food?” 9 out of 10 them would say Ramen or Thai food. I’ve frequently visited Thai restaurant the last few years to the point some friends got a little sick of it because to them Thai food wasn’t too impressive to them ,but to me I absolutely love it.

I think I have been to fourteen Thai restaurants between Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. That’s quite a lot, but I am sure there are others that have been to more Thai restaurants. So here’s a few reasons why I love Thai food:

a dish of pad thai

I absolutely love Pad Thai! It’s definitely one of my favorite noodle dishes and I love that it has a slight tang-like flavor, but also with a little sweetness. There was a time in my life where I would try the different Pad Thai around different Thai restaurants and some were a hit or miss. I also like that you can have it with chicken, beef, seafood, vegetable, pork, and etc.

a glass of iced tea

I also love Thai Ice Tea as most people do when they have Thai food. It’s rich, not too sweet, and just really refreshing and delightful.

fried puffed pastry with dipping sauce

One of the appetizers I really enjoy at a Thai restaurant is the Chicken Curry Puff which is filled with chicken, carrot, potato, onion, and Massaman curry. It’s often served with a sweet cucumber vinegar. The appetizer is very moist with delicious curry flavors, but not at spicy at all.

bowl of ice cream

I also can’t forget Thai Ice Tea ice cream. Yep there is such a thing and in fact, I feel more and more places are carrying this flavor! The Thai Ice Tea ice cream I’ve had is very rich, creamy, and you can really taste the tea-ness in the ice cream.

Another reason I love Thai food/going to Thai restaurants is the decor and ambiance. Most Thai restaurants have a intimate, dim light setting and pretty calm and relaxing. There are some reasons why I love Thai food.

Is there a cuisine that you enjoy and why do you enjoy it?

What’s Been Cooking In The Kitchen – Part 2

Lately, I’ve been quite proud of how much I have taught myself to do and tried in the kitchen these past few weeks. While my schedule has been a little crazy and it’s been a little tiring, I have also been making good progress.  For this specific post, I am going to be sharing what I’ve made the last few weeks, sorry no recipes written down just yet, but yes get ready to be intrigued and salivate:

Watercress Soup

I’m not very good at making Chinese soups or herbal soups, but my boyfriend loves watercress and I tried to make him a watercress soup we both often drink at our homes. The soup was missing a key ingredient that usually gives off a natural sweetness to the soup and I also didn’t use real pork meat. I used pork bones instead.

a large tray pan of wrapped shrimp rolls with dipping sauce

My boyfriend & I were invited to a Potluck at our friend’s home and I decided to make Vietnamese summer rolls since they would make a great appetizer and snack for the potluck. Everyone enjoyed the rolls and said they look and taste like restaurant quality.

dishes of vegetables and chicken wings

Last week I made steamed eggs with Chinese sausage and roast pork, soy sauce chicken drumsticks, and sauteed vegetables for dinner for me and my boyfriend. The soy sauce chicken drumsticks were an A+ to my boyfriend. It was meaty, tender, and delicious!

a bowl of seasoned rice

There was leftover pumpkin, mushroom, and Chinese sausage in the refrigerator yesterday from dinner on Friday night, so I chopped it up and used it in a fried rice and made a pumpkin fried rice which was quite scrumptious!

a bowl of pear slices

My boyfriend has been sick and has been coughing, so my mom told me to make this Asian Pear soup which is a popular soup in China and is a traditional Chinese medicinal soup. It’s usually consumed with Northern apricot kernels which is what you see in the picture above and rock candy for sweetness.

Well this is all I’ve been making so far and hopefully found it to be intriguing.

What hobbies have you been finding yourself doing more often lately? 

March 11th is Eat Your Noodles Day

Today is Eat Your Noodles Day and what your about to read and see will make you hungry and possibly salivate for noodles.

Growing up in a Chinese family and being exposed to predominantly Asian and Italian cuisine in my neighborhood, you can bet that I love noodles and eat it quite often. Since today is Eat Your Noodles Day, I would like to share with you a few of my favorite noodle dishes.

a dish of noodles


One cuisine I love the most is Thai and the most popular and recognized dish of all is Pad Thai. I absolutely love Pad Thai and the best one I’ve had so far was from BKNY Thai. I ordered Chicken Pad Thai during my first time at BKNY Thai. The Pad Thai was on par and had just the right amount of sweet and tanginess to it.

If your not familiar with Pad Thai, it’s a stir-fried rice noodle with eggs, chopped firm tofu, and flavored with tamarind pulp, fish sauce, garlic or shallots, palm sugar and often served with lime or lemon and crushed roast peanuts. It also contains bean sprouts, garlic chives, fresh shrimp, crab or chicken or any other protein.

soupI think it’s pretty apparent to you that I love ramen. One of the best ramen I’ve had so far is the Syo-Yu Ramen from Ramen Takumi. It is a soy sauce flavored broth with two slices of pork, bamboo shoots, soy sauce flavored egg, seaweed, scallions, and onions. Sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? I fell in love the first time I had this because it was so hearty, warm, and just amazing!

food dishes


I don’t eat mac n’ cheese very much, but there is one mac n’ cheese that I have had and really enjoyed and that’s the Short Rib Mac n’ Cheese from Fatty Cue at the Barclays Center. This was possibly the best mac n’ cheese I’ve ever, ever had! It contained boneless short rib, shredded mozzarella cheese, chopped tomatoes, and scallions. It was like absolute heaven!

a food dishAnother noodle dish I really enjoy is this Baked Minced Beef with Spaghetti from Hong Kong Tea & Sushi. I never thought spaghetti can taste so good with this Asian twist. This dish is spaghetti topped with corn, peas, carrots, minced beef and light tomato sauce and cheese! Doesn’t that sound yum? I like that this dish is very filling, but also filled with vibrant colors and it’s mouth-watering delicious!

a food dishFinally, I’d like to share with you another noodle I like to have every time I am craving for Korean food and it’s Japchae. Japchae is a Korean dish made from sweet potato noodles, stir fried in sesame oil with vegetables and sometimes served with beef and flavored with soy sauce and sweetened with sugar. It is usually garnished with sesame seeds. It can be served hot or cold.

I like the sesame taste in the Japchae because it makes the noodles taste a lot richer. I’ve had it hot and cold before and I think I prefer to have it cold. It just tastes a lot more refreshing and pleasant that way.

Now that I’ve named some of my favorite noodle dishes, maybe you will be inspired to give one of my favorites a shot.

Do you eat noodles often? What are you favorite noodle dishes?