Weekend Eats

The weekend always means big eating for me in Shanghai. During the week, I usually cook at home, but sometimes I splurge a little on the weekend. First of all I have to say that I totally failed at taking pictures for this post. I just bought a new memory card for my cell phone, and my old one was full all weekend and I was too lazy to change it. It is kind of disappointing because I ate a wide array of yummy Shanghai goodies.

Friday night was all about the spice. I went to Yuxin Chuancai, a really good Sichuan restaurant, with a big group, so we ordered a lot of food. Everything was good and spicy, but the real star was the dandan noodles (担担面) we ordered at the end of the meal. Make sure you have a full cold beer leftover for this dish. It is basically noodles swimming in chili sauce, very oily, very salty, very spicy, but absolutely the best. My stomach needed Saturday to recover, so Sunday was another big food day!

Sunday morning I indulged with a treat from another Shanghai institution. Anyone who has been here awhile and is a fan of breakfast food (or any food) probably knows about Amelia’s Jams. Last week at the Christmas market at Paulaner I picked up a jar of mango chutney. Best decision of the year. I paired it with a little cream cheese and croissant and it was breakfast heaven. You can get yourself some of this nectar of the gods here.

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Sunday afternoon I ventured to Ammoka (a nice cafe of Anfu Road) for a little afternoon brunch. The service was pretty bad (or “standard” as I call it in China) but my sandwich was awesome. I am big sandwich eater and I always have trouble here in Shanghai finding legit sandwiches. This particular beauty had grilled chicken, brie, avocado, tomato, and bacon on it, can’t beat that.

My last Sunday adventure took me to Xintiandi to visit the vintage market “Dreams & Fleas”. Most of the little stalls were selling antiques or vintage clothes, it was all really cute. But of course I went for the food. A friend of mine set up his fresh juice and sand which stand in the back of the market, and I wanted to try it out. The sandwich was awesome (of course) but the real winner was the juice. I had orange/pineapple, and I also tried a sip of my friend’s orange/carrot/ginger. Nice and healthy way to round out the weekend!

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I was actually inspired by my sandwich at Ammoka to make a grilled cheese this week that I have to share. I have been on a bread kick lately, so I picked up a baguette, loaded it up with fresh mozzarella from Avocado lady (another institution over on Wuyuan Road), stuck it in toaster oven to melt up, added some avocado slices, and whipped up a little spread with sun dried tomato, olive oil, and fresh basil (thank you avocado lady). It was an immaculate grilled cheese, one of the best I’ve had in awhile. Do give it a try.

In a nutshell: Definitely try some Sichuan food to warm up in this cold weather, get a fresh juice and maybe a pillbox hat at Dreams & Fleas this month, and visit Avocado Lady and make yourself a grilled cheese (and then share the recipe with me)

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