Edmonds Restaurant News: As Taste gets underway, the art of cooking for a crowd

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Cooking for a crowd at A Taste of Edmonds.

Imagine you’ve been asked to whip up your special recipe, entrée, side or a dessert. Here’s the catch — you have to make it for a lot of folks, a huge crowd, say half the town of Edmonds. Another hitch: You can’t cook in your own kitchen, your comfort zone where you have the correct utensils, the special pan or casserole dish that makes your recipe turn out just right. Nope — you have to pack up your raw ingredients, your pans, preparation tools and hit the road. Think Army bivouac tent, the cooks’ canvas kitchen. Another challenge — you must trust a group of apprentices, hastily trained, to create your special dish, just as you would if in your own kitchen. Repeat this process, over and over for 10 hours a day, three days straight and you have an idea of what it’s like for a restaurant to participate in the Taste of Edmonds.

“Come Hungry.” This was the suggestion offered to me as a judge in this year’s Taste Off. We were to choose the best entry in three categories- Main Dish, Side Dish, Dessert. You can find the results here.

Meanwhile, I wanted to list the brave souls who’ve set up camp and will feed their specialties to visitors at our Taste of Edmonds event this year.

Afghan Delicious – Truly delicious traditional Afghan cuisine

Big T’s Moonshine BBQ – Full restaurant is located at 4911 196th St. S.W., in Lynnwood.

Biringer’s Farm – Berries! Sweet and delicious.

 

Blazing Onion sliders

Blazing Onion Burger Co. – a truly Northwest burger company- the restaurants are located in multiple Snohomish County locals, and specialize in local ingredients, Tillamook cheese, Painted Hills Beef, etc.

Corn Roasters – they’ve been at it for 25 years…’nuff said.

Curry House and Delicious Asia are back again.

Island Creamery LLC – creamy, rich and delicious treats on a hot day.

 

Kafe Neo gyro and fries.

Kafe Neo – an Edmonds restaurant located at 21108 Highway 99, Greek and Mediterranean restaurant that serves seasonal, Greek and Mediterranean classics in generous portions at affordable prices. Food is healthy and fantastically fresh: cooked from scratch daily.

Kaleenka Piroshky – Seattle’s Original Piroshky being served for over 30 years

Kona Ice NW, LLC – Shaved Ice unlike any other.

Lemongrass Restaurant – Local Vietnamese chain serving traditional dishes & vegetarian options

Loukoumathes – This Edmonds-based business offers Greek-Style Honey Puffs

Mac & Cheese Whaaaaaat– You have to come out and see this one…

Mangosteen206, New Orleans Cookery and Old Fashion Kettle Corn Co offer a variety of tastes.

Pat’s Philly Steak Sandwiches – The best Philly steak sandwiches and fresh-squeezed lemonade too.

Scott’s Bar & Grill – There’s a reason they win Taste Off categories, stop by and taste why. Farm-fresh and locally grown Scott’s menu offers fresh, local produce, meats and even desserts. Taste award winning rigatoni Bolognese, Broadway Pea Salad, and a perennial dessert winner – Key Lime pie.

Scotty’s NW Blackened Salmon Caesar Salad is a top favorite every year.

Simply Soulful Delightful pies and food that hold true to that simple, full-of-flavor soul food that you must try

Sweet Fish ice cream

Sweet Fish – Ice cream-stuffed fish?

PB Goodness, Truly Med, and Ziegler’s Bratwursts/Bumpus round out the list.

Taste of Edmonds runs Aug 11-13, at 6th Avenue and Bell Street. Park at Edmonds-Woodway High School for free and ride the free shuttle.

Happy holidays

Food holidays. I know, as if any of us need an excuse to eat, right? Research shows that here in the United States we have many opportunities to celebrate occasions with food, and this month has plenty. Here’s a link to a whole calendar of days, weeks, even entire months to celebrate culinary creations.

Some of my favorites:

Aug. 13 – Get out the grill and celebrate National Filet Mignon Day

Aug. 15 – Lemon Meringue Pie Day and it’s also Julia Child’s birthday. Pull out your copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking and whip up one of Julia’s fabulous dessert recipes.

Aug. 19 – Indulge in Hot & Spicy Food Day and cool off your pallet with Soft-Serve Ice Cream Day.

Aug. 20 has two of my favorite food groups – Bacon and Chocolate.  It’s Bacon Day and Chocolate Pecan Pie Day.

Aug: 21 – refresh your pallet on Sweet Tea Day.

Aug. 22 It’s the national day to celebrate Pecan Tortes and my favorite seasonal fresh fruit with Eat a Peach Day.

And on Aug. 24, have your peaches in a pie on Peach Pie Day.

Aug. 28 is the day to celebrate Cherry Turnovers. Tour the local bakeries, compare products.

Aug. 31 offers a treat for hikers and bikers: National Trail Mix Day.

New in Edmonds

Hot and sour and egg flower soups at Furi.

Furi. The change of ownership and name at this local Edmonds Chinese restaurant is all for the good. While take-out and delivery are available, I encourage dining at the restaurant at least once, just to meet the sweet gentleman who now owns the place.

New owner Yang greeted us at the door and ushered us to a table. He thanked us for visiting, before we even cracked open the menu. Complimentary green tea contained nice floral notes, sipped and enjoyed as we perused the choices.

We were there on a Saturday so couldn’t take advantage of the lunch specials. Our server suggested the dinner special, which included a soup, rice, appetizer and entree for only a few dollars more than the lunch special and great way to sample an assortment of dishes.

Hot and sour soup came loaded with veggies and a nice rice vinegar tang. I’d heard about the homemade chicken broth and it was the star of the egg flower soup. My cup had abundant strands of delicate egg tendrils, carrots, celery and cabbage; veggies were tooth tender. We noted the cups are more generous than the average serving at other local places.

Appetizers- My shrimp’s thin crust held the very tender seafood without adding extra oil. Hubby’s egg roll appetizer contained a good assortment of vegetables inside its crisp wrapper.

Yang came back to see if we were happy with our food. English is not his native tongue, but I managed to learn he’s been in the U.S. since about 1998. He is thrilled to have his own restaurant, after working for others.

General Tso’s Chicken.

My entrée was General Tso’s chicken. Pieces of white meat, lightly coated and fork tender, accompanied by a nice piquant sauce of garlic and chili. Brown rice was prepared to a suitable texture.

Spicy Shrimp

Hubby couldn’t get enough shrimp – he chose the Spicy Shrimp for his entrée. He’d wanted vegetables too, and our server asked the kitchen to add steamed broccoli, no extra charge. Spicy shrimp, plenty of garlicky sauce, came with steamed rice.

Dim sum arrived at the table with a smile. “Something extra to try out,” said our server. The dumpling had great texture; filling was pork and veggies, cooked in broth before wrapped into the dough and pan fried to a crisp finish.

Dipping sauce was sweet, gingery and an extra taste I couldn’t quite identify. Yang was back our the table, so I asked – but no dice. Said it was his “secret recipe.”

Everything at Furi is homemade. “I make it all,” said Yang.

“Even the red Sriracha-style sauce?” It was sweet, hot, fresh…just delicious. He nodded in the affirmative.

I inquired about desserts. “Not just yet,” was the answer, but our server quickly added “We do have ice cream…”

How sweet is that? Great food and an abundance of good will- Attributes that go a long way to make a success of this new spot.

Enjoy fresh-tasting Cantonese cuisine at Furi – 546 5th Ave. S. in Edmonds.

New close by – Aggie’s BBQ, 7533 Olympic View Dr. in Perrinville, has finally opened for business. A visit is planned as soon as the food coma from the Taste of Edmonds subsides.

Closed – Sad to say, Bucca di Beppo in Lynnwood has closed its doors. Location in Seattle is still open.

— By Kathy Passage

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