Takeout Joints Vol. 3: Italian and Asian

The first installments of this column have been broken down separately into pizza/Italian and Chinese/Asian. Because I’ve slowed down a little bit on the takeout lately, I am going to combine the two for Volume 3. Below we have one of each, and my, how vastly different they were in quality!

Photo of the Day: March 6, 2018

This is the scene when I’m in my element. Mis en place for chicken which would be stuffed with cheddar cheese and asparagus. On the side are rolls and my homemade garlic butter, stuffed peppers, and mashed sweet potatoes. And a vodka and cranberry, of course, to help get in the zone.

Restaurant Review: UJ’s Asian Bistro (Hazlet, NJ)

I saw the sign going up for a new Asian fusion restaurant coming to my hometown of Hazlet. I thought, “Do we really need another one?” There are several takeout joints in this area, and the one sit-down place which arrived last year was, in my eyes, a bombastic failure. Maybe we should just leave…

Restaurant Review: Amravathi (Matawan, NJ)

I had a craving for Indian food in Matawan. Ordering from Neelam or Bollywood Tadka was out of the question. I then decided it was finally time to give Amravathi a try. Well, I actually had eaten there before, according to my parents. I was a small child, and we had not yet discovered Neelam….

Photo of the Day: January 8, 2018

This sub was a two-hander: a chicken cheesesteak with hot peppers, from Luigi’s in Matawan. The bread was crispy and thankfully sturdy enough to hold the sloppy fillings on the inside.

Photo of the Day: January 7, 2018

A work lunch at Lenora’s with a friend, and one of the best taco bowls I’ve ever had. Thin strips of grilled chicken piled high with rice, beans, lettuce, tomato, cheese, and sour cream inside a homemade taco shell.

Photo of the Day: November 25, 2017

I’m very self-critical, but that’s one of the best things I’ve ever cooked. Chicken in a spicy peanut sauce with peppers and onions. The sauce consisted of peanut butter, teriyaki sauce, garlic, black pepper, chili flakes, oil, and water. Cooked until thick and poured over rice. The pepper and onion maintained a crunch, while the…

Photo of the Day: November 16, 2017

Looking back to the time my friend Walter, former manager of Wildflowers in New Hope, Pennsylvania, cooked Will and I this chicken in a tagine. Spring 2017.