side dish

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Pickled Vegetables
Pickled Vegetables

Have you been to

Andy’s Wok

and had their pickled vegetables?

If you live anywhere in the Kansas City area, you have to try Andy’s Wok.  It is, hand’s down, the best Chinese restaurant in town (sorry Panda Express.)  They have amazing appetizers like onion cakes and vegetable spring rolls, which are very flavorful without the meat because of all their wonderful spices, including a hint of mustard.

My wife usally orders the sauted asparagus, while I gravitate between the Sichuan eggplant and moo shu shrimp (extra spicy.)  BWD, Jr., of course orders noodles and rice (what else) and we all come away with an outstanding meal.

But one of the things that I’ve always enjoyed about the restaurant is that before dinner, they give out little bowls of pickled vegetables.  The good news for me is that no one else at the table likes pickled vegetable (BWD, Jr. doesn’t like them because they are vegetables, and Mrs. WellDone doesn’t seem to like the pickled part.)  So I happily munch away on the somehow-still-crunchy, sweet, yet sour pickled cabbage and carrots all by myself.

And fear the day my family wises up.

Anyway, never one to let a good recipe go unrecorded, I finally broke down and asked the owner how she made the pickled vegetables.  This is what she told me.

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EspinacaAfter my last Abuelo’s incident, I figured it was time for

Espinaca At Home

(Quick side note: welcome back to #MeatlessMonday.  It’s been awhile, but the drought is finally over.)

So, you may be wondering what is this espinaca that I speak of.  Alternately, you may have ordered espinaca before.  Either way, let me assure that cardboard or no, if you have not ordered the espinaca from Abuelo’s, you haven’t had espinaca as good as it can be.

See, most of the time espinaca is a white cheese dip that has been swirled with spinach, spices, and sometimes other vegetables like corn or red peppers.  As is, it’s delicious.  However, Abuelo’s took the concept and blasted it to new heights of flavor when they devised the devilishly delicious espinaca casserole which looks a little like what’s pictured above (and looks exactly like the picture in the other link, which I need not display again.)

Either way, what the good folks at Abuelo’s did was take the original cheese dip concept, add some different flavors, spices, etc.,  top it with cheese and finally bake it.  Yes, there are a few steps to make the dish, but it’s not terribly difficult to execute.

And it’s worth it.

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