Archive for March 2010

Minar’s Lamb Rogan Josh is the Perfect Medium Spicy

The Jewish holiday of Passover is upon us this week. That mean no leavened food allowed in our diets- No bread! No pasta! No pizza! So what is  a Jew to do when the matzah pizzas get boring? Indian food may not be the first thing you think of, but it totally works- meat in sauce is fine  if you don’t strictly follow eating at only Kosher places. This was my chance to check out Minar Palace, a very clean restaurant with food available for take out or to eat in. The menu looks like what you would expect with, chicken, lamb, and veggies in various traditional preparations. You can also find shrimp and goat, which are a little less expected. Some dishes are ready to be served at the steam table up front, while others are made in the back kitchen.

I figured lamb would be a good choice, and the lady behind the counter suggested the popular rogan josh ($9) – a mild curry.

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50% at Falafel Factory: Groupon's offer today is $5 for $10 Worth of Falafel at Falafel Factory

PROFILE: Philly Luncher “Brian”

As is customary at Philly Lunch, every Tuesday we turn over the site to a different lunch’er for his or her recommendations for the best lunch in Philadelphia. This week it’s Brian, one of the awesome servers working at a  Jose Garces restaurant.

Name: Brian

Age: 35

Occupation: Server

Where in Philly do you Work?: Garces Restaurant Group (Distrito and Chifa)

Favorite Kind of Food: Fried Food. I am also generally into anything with fried or poached eggs on top. That is a huge selling point.

Least Favorite Kind of Food: Grilled Cheese (don’t get me started)

Favorite Place(s) to Eat Lunch in Philly: Mama’s Vegetarian (18 South 20th Street) I love the Mama’s Meal Falafel Sandwich w/ Fries and Soda. It is simple but always delicious. I used to live at Tria. (18th and Sansom Streets). I am particualrly find of the Prosciutto and Fig Panino, the Tuscan White Bean Spread and the Blue Cheese and Pear Butter Bruschetta. I really like the Passionberry Iced Tea as well. Paesano’s (152 W. Girard and 901 Christian Street). The Gustaio, which is the greatest sandwich ever invented. I have also just fallen for the Fried Lasagna sandwich with the fried egg and mozzarella. I need to go back to the South Philly location to try the burger.

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Crispy Pork Chops and Peking Noodles are both Musts at Empress Garden

Empress Garden certainly doesn’t stand out from any other Chinatown joints based on looks. Though the signage indicates Mandarin and Szechuan style food, they also serve Taiwanese dishes, making Empress Garden more unique. The crowded menu shows off countless preparations for pork, beef, seafood, chicken, and noodles. A good part of the menu is written in Mandarin and includes items that are not offered on the English menu. A Chowhound poster graciously provided some translations. My waitress was very helpful at confirming I was ordering the dishes that I had in mind.  Most entrees are 5- 8 bucks and make a nice sized and cheap lunch; lunch specials are available during the week that come with rice and soup. I tried a lunch special along with some irresistible items off the regular menu.

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Lunch Links (The “What Kind of Sick Genius Created the Peanut Butter, Ricotta, and Bacon Calzone?” Edition)

Photo Courtesy of Drew Lazor at Meal Ticket

  • Today Square Burger re-opens for the Spring [Phoodie]
  • The saucy vegan short rib sloppy joe at Royal Tavern [Frieswiththatshake]
  • Vote on the real Philly dog to be served at Citizens Bank Park [Grubstreet]
  • I am seriously drooling over the dough covered creations at D.P. Dough [Meal Ticket]
  • Surprise over the “passable flavor” of Wendy’s new Bacon and Blue burger [A Hamburger Today]
  • On another hamburger note, 500º opened this week [Unbreaded]

Templetown’s Irie Food: Lickin’ the Brown Stew Chicken

Midtown Lunch: L.A. wrote about a Jamaican food truck this week, so I figured it was about time to point out a Philly equivalent. Though University City gets all the love for their fab food truck scene, the Temple area has a few gems of its own, including the Irie Food Truck.

You will not walk away hungry after finishing your meal from the Irie Food truck. Staples like jerk chicken and oxtail are served in 3 different sizes: mini (comes with one side, $5.50), medium (with 2 sides, $7.50), and large (with 3 sides, $9).

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Soup and Sandwich done right at Le Bus

Le Bus is a small take-out place right by Rittenhouse Square with high quality pre-made soup, salads, and sandwiches to quickly grab for a lovely picnic in the Square, if you are lucky, or to hurry back to the office/classroom, if you are not so lucky. Le Bus is known for their baked goods; they sell a variety of loaves, rolls, and desserts to take home. The rotating sandwich selections run about $6, while the soup of the day is $4.

Daily specials are announced on a board outside;  the combination of nicer weather and a promise of gazpacho lured me in.

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