Monday, February 25, 2013

Budget Asian Cooking

Every couple of months, I head to an Asian grocery store in South Philly....the kind where I am the tallest person in my big height of 5'2"...and I stock up.

Here is what I always get.....

  • big jar of sambal oelek
  • big bottle of sriracha 
  • a couple large bottles of rice vinegar
  • a large bottle of good soy
  • a large jar oyster sauce
  • a jar of hoisin sauce
  • several packages of rice noodles
  • a couple packages of cellophane noodles
  • some fresh thin noodles...I toss them immediately in the freezer
  • won-ton wrappers....also go right in the freezer
  • egg roll wrappers....same with the freezer
  • fresh ginger...when I get home, I peel it, and freeze it...then just grate it while still frozen
  • fresh lemongrass...stick it in a glass of water and lasts for months...even starts to root
  • bottle of fish sauce (yeah, it sounds gross and doesn't taste great when you try it plain....but in stuff....WOW)

I also pick up any spices that I'm out of....and anything I've been interested in trying or have seen in a recipe.

While all this stuff would normally cost me about $85 in a regular grocery store, taking the time to drive the 20 minutes there and back....this ends up costing me about $35 and the quality is MUCH better.

Crazy savings, right????  You have to be comfortable reading/guessing at labels in another language....and with sights and smells that aren't in your "norm."  Once you get over that, it's so fun to find new things.

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