The chefs at Simple Touch Veggie Cuisine believe that just because something is healthy doesn't mean it has to taste healthy. This belief has inspired their menu of American dishes, which swap out meat for alternative proteins and produce. They start with slices of tofu, which they coat in barbecue or spicy Cajun sauces to create hearty sandwiches. For other recipes, they rely on a medley of vegetables cooked in spices to create tongue-searing Thai curries or burritos. One of their most iconic dishes, however, is their mac 'n no cheese, which features 100% plant-based "cheese" that they make in-house.
When Mohammed and Nesrine Hawari came to the United States from Israel, they packed more than just clothes in their suitcases. Their most important item was actually a stash of family recipes, a tome that led to the couple opening Kareem's Restaurant. The eatery has since earned numerous awards, including best falafel sandwich in 2012 from OCWeekly, who which described the dish as ?emerald-green and poofy on the inside, dark-brown and crunchy on the outside.? Chefs tuck the balls into warm pita pockets or serve them alongside creamy hummus and bite-size bits of saut?ed lamb. For other plates, chefs bake whole fish, and skewer morsels of grilled beef and chicken with metal rods or tiny pirate swords.
At Sura Korean BBQ & Tofu, meat and tofu put aside their differences in the name of cooperating to create savory Korean feasts. Bulgogi—sliced beef marinated in 12 flavorful ingredients—stars in many dishes, from japche rice-paper wraps to custom-made bibimbap served in a hot stone pot. Instead of sculpting faux turkeys from vatfuls of guacamole, vegans can build feasts from meat-free dishes such as tofu soup and sushi-like kimchi kimbap. The restaurant's popular korean tacos encourage meats and greens to hang out together, housing combinations of bulgogi, pork, chicken, veggies, or tofu. Outdoor seating invites patrons to dine amid verdant plants, whereas comfy indoor booths honor nature with sunny lights and bamboo wall coverings.
Qdoba's burrito baristas handcraft a catering menu of Mexican-inspired cuisine, customizable with a panoply of fresh ingredients for a taco, nacho, or burrito bar. Qdoba's culinary crafters craft succulent fillings for burritos, tacos, nachos, and quesadillas, including protein-packing choices, such as slow-roasted pulled pork, adobo-marinated grilled steak or chicken, and spiced shredded or ground beef, with vegetarian options also available. Taste the gooey flavor accents of the signature queso sauce, a three-cheese blend with roasted poblanos, tomatoes, and jalapeños, the pinto or black beans simmered in cumin and onion, or the creamy, hand-smashed guacamole that's ideal for filling up Queen Elizabeth's diamond-studded guacamole chalice. Tortilla chips with salsa bar and desserts complete each catered event, and customers can opt for burrito-boxed lunches and any add-ons.
Beef and green onion. Shrimp, leeks, and egg. Bok choy and pork. These are just a few of the ingredient combinations that fill the savory dumplings at Tasty Dumpling House. Beyond these pan-fried or steamed treats, the restaurant also serves a full menu of Chinese dishes, from spicy ma po tofu to stir-fried lamb.
For the casual observer passing Tuk Tuk, it might seem as though there has been an accident. The front of a tuk tuk—the Thai term for rickshaw—juts from the front of the building above the awning, as though its wheel has just burst through the wall. But if that observer ventured inside, they would find neither debris nor an apologetic teleporter proclaiming that his calculations were off. Instead they would see diners seated beneath colorful wall art and hanging lamps whose shades resemble curving Möbius strips, or, according to one review from Gayot, snail shells. Then, once the adrenaline faded and reality set in, the investigating observer would be smacked by what was so obvious to everyone else: the aroma of mingling spices.
A compendium of noodle dishes, wok stir-fries, curries, and house specialties, the menu prioritizes the power of complementary ingredients. According to the same Gayot review, chef Aoi Rattanamanee has a particular knack for seasoning grilled dishes: "Chicken is marinated overnight in garlic, cilantro and black pepper, fostering deep flavor." The spicy basil fried rice mixes chili and thai basil within a vegetable medley, and the Crying Tiger beef derives its zest from garlic, galangal root, and soybean sauce. Those in search of proven staples can indulge in pad thai or one of three curry variants, whose ingredients have all simmered in a creamy coconut milk.