Hello Nouilles of 3rds!

Hello Nouilles of 3rds!

There’s a newly opened up restaurant in Lomita, California with a very interesting  and intriguing name, Nouilles of 3rds. Nouilles means noodles in French and 3rds is a reference to the rules of thirds or rule of thumb for composition in photography.

Upon entering the restaurant and seeing their offerings, once can understand a little bit more of the name of the restaurant. The menu consists of various pho or Vietnamese noodle soup dishes and hence the “Nouilles” in the name.

For the reasoning behind the “rules of thirds”,  one will fully appreciate the meaning until one sees this restaurants offerings. The “rules of thirds”for photography aims to bring photos that are better balanced and more pleasing. Similarly Nouilles of 3rds noodle dish are well balanced and very pleasing to any foodie.

The first pho dish to be presented to our table was the Homestyle Free-range chicken noodles.

It was a nice balanced pho dish that consisted of free-range shredded chicken, shrimp, rice noodle, Asian herbs all in warm chicken broth with crispy roasted garlic oil. The long, silky rice noodles balanced well with the tender chicken and Asian herbs and the all flavors came together for a perfect composition. Perfect composition like a perfect photo.

The second noodle dish that came to our table was the Prime Beef Noodles.

This dish had aged prime beef, egg noodles, Asian herbs in beef stock with crispy roasted garlic oil. Similar to the chicken noodle dish, this was very pleasing to the palate. The savory thin layers of beef in the richly seasoned beef broth was not only delicious be comforting as well for the chilly day.

At first the name of the restaurant Nouilles of 3rds may throw a restaurant customer in for a loop. However upon entering and trying their entrees, one can find full appreciation for the name. Similar to the “rules of thirds” in photography, this place aims to please with their “Nouilles” dishes. In photography one aims for perfect composition via these rules and here the restaurant aims to perfect the modern pho dish.  A combination of technical skill and artistic creativity is an important part of the “rules of thirds” and this is also seen on the pho dishes here. The noodle dishes I got to try were culinary art work that was not only pleasing to the eye but to the palate as well.

Hello Mrs. A. Hanoi Pho!

Hello Mrs. A. Hanoi Pho!

Mrs. A. Hanoi Pho is a brand new restaurant in Torrance, CA specializing in Northern Vietnamese cuisine. In a city full of various restaurants, how does one differentiate itself from the others. Mrs. A. is one that clearly is out to show that they have what it takes to be impressive and different.

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Walking in, I was instantly impressed. The restaurant is very clean and nice. There are pretty pastel jade trees all over and beautiful circular lanterns hanging from above.

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One area of the restaurant has a flat screen tv showcasing all of the dishes offered by the restaurant.

Unlike other restaurants that has many offerings, Mrs. A only has five specialities. One being their pho, three dishes being rice dishes and one being a roll appetizer. The choice to only have five entrees can be seen as a testament to having the best quality of dishes. All of their foods are fresh made daily. There is no MSG and no artificial ingredients.

The waiter mentioned there most popular dish is the #2.) Mrs. A. Hanoi Pho. It is a pho done the Northern Vietnamese way. It consists of medium rare Angus beef in traditional Hanoi beef broth.

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I found this pho to be very interesting because unlike pho served at other restaurants, there were no bean sprouts served with it. According to the server, this is how pho is commonly served in Vietnam. I love how they didn’t go with the mainstream way of doing pho! Their version of pho is great! The noodles were fresh. The Angus beef was of good quality and lean. The broth tasty.

The second dish that I got to try here was  the #3. Mrs. A. Cube Steak. This dish consisted of Angus Beef Cube served with rice and vegetables.

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I liked this dish a lot! The Angus beef similar to the meat in the pho was of the best quality. It was tender and lean. It was well seasoned and I loved the sauce that it was marinated in. There was a sweet sauce that was on the side for dipping but the beef was perfect without it. The side vegetables was similar to a cole slaw.

The pho and beef dish are awesome but I have to say one of my favorite offerings was their black iced tea. This black iced tea is amazing! It tastes like Thai tea but without condensed milk. It’s perfectly sweet and refreshing. I’ve never had tea like this and this definitely has to be one of the best iced teas I’ve ever had.

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Mrs. A. Hanoi Pho is a wonderful addition to the South Bay.  It’s great that they decided to go with introducing Northern Vietnamese cuisine. Their offerings from the food to the drinks are different and delightful and sure to bring smiles to all who visit.

Fore more smiles, please read my Yelp review on Mrs. A. Hanoi Pho.

Hello homemade chicken pho and chicken spring rolls! :)

Hello homemade chicken pho and chicken spring rolls! :)

Today’s culinary creation is homemade chicken pho and chicken spring rolls.

Ingredients for chicken pho: chicken, pho noodles, chicken broth, cilantro, garlic, onion

Ingredients for chicken spring rolls: chicken, cabbage, onion, carrot, green onion, vermicelli, celery

I am a big fan of pho and spring rolls and have frequented different Vietnamese restaurants around town. Today was the first attempt at home of trying to create a homemade version of some my favorite Vietnamese dishes.

First up for the pho was preparing and cooking of the chicken. Even at restaurants, I usually choose chicken over beef. Chicken tends to be leaner and not as fatty. After prep of the chicken, was was boiling the noodles. I made sure to get the pho noodles for this. I found it at a local 99 Ranch market. Once both the chicken and pho were prepared, the soup base was poured over both and the cilantro and onion were added on top.

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As for the spring rolls, I wanted to have vermicelli noodles as one of the ingredients. I am a big fan of Vietnamese spring rolls with vermicelli inside. I also wanted a healthier version of egg rolls and so instead of frying these, I put them in the oven. For about 10 mins at 400F, they came out crispy and tasty. I used sweet chili sauce for the dipping sauce.

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I had a lot of fun creating a homemade version of my favorite Vietnamese dishes. I know it won’t be the last time that this will be made ;).

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Hello Happy Veggie!

Hello Happy Veggie!

Ever since I gave up meat for Lent, I have been on a vegetarian kick! Even though it’s after Easter, I am trying to still be vegetarian. It would be best to say that I am a flexitarian or a semi-vegetarian. I’ve been eating meat only once in a while. When I heard about Happy Happy Veggie, I knew I had to check it out. After all, I am a happy person and a happy (semi) vegetarian.

During my trip here, I tried out the crunchy casaval rolls. The rolls had jicama, tofu, roasted peanuts, carrots, basil inside rice paper and a peanut dipping sauce. It was like eating a fresh salad but egg roll style! There was peanut sauce for dipping and it had little peanuts in them and added the taste into these rolls. It was a great sauce that gave plenty of flavors to the rolls.

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I also got the vegetarian pho which is their specialty. The vegetarian pho was filled with noodles, shallots, tender soy meat and lots of healthy herbs and spices.

Happy Veggies makes me one happy flexitarian!

For more smiles, please see my recent yelp review on Happy Veggie.