QUESTION OF THE DAY

Two questions, actually:

1) Are there any reader recommendations for a Chinese restaurant that serves really good egg foo young?  Egg foo young is a Cantonese dish, and most local Chinese restaurants these days seem to be Szechuan.  The Nanking Garden, of course, was the yardstick by which all egg foo young was measured, followed by Jimmy’s Oriental Gardens.  Now, it is seldom found on Chinese restaurant menus.  The Szechuan Restaurant on Cliff Drive has egg foo young, but it’s just not.Cantonese.

2)  Whatever happened to Swiss Rolls?  They look like chocolate jelly rolls and were once very popular. What they are is a strip of chocolate cake with a thick layer of whipped cream on top and then rolled up like a jelly roll.  I hate to use this comparison, but Swiss Rolls look like a large version of those truly disgusting Hostess Ho Ho things.  All bakeries used to sell them and you didn’t even have to special-order them.  The best ones came from Koelsch’s and Irene Davis bakeries.

FUN FACT:  There is no such thing as frozen egg foo young.  Chun King used to make it years ago, but inexplicably stopped.

– Rex of SB

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6 Responses to QUESTION OF THE DAY

  1. Donald says:

    1. Egg Foo Young, as we traditionally know it, is actually more of a Chinese-American dish, it being a derivative of a Cantonese dish. Since Empress Palace’s departure, I don’t think there are any more Cantonese style restaurants in the SB area. There is one remaining in Lompoc (Rice Bowl), and a couple in Santa Maria (Pearl East and New Ocean). You are right, the current versions are just not the same. I am of course partial to my dad’s egg foo young, which was a popular item when he was proprietor of Hong Kong Restaurant (1963-1978) and Golden Garden Restaurant (1980-1982)!

    2. Too bad you can not find Swiss Rolls around here. Maybe in Solvang? Swiss Rolls are a very common and popular item found in major Asian supermarkets and bakeries here in the States. Not sure if Indo-China market would carry, but if they do, it would probably be mass produced version.

  2. Peter says:

    Shang-Hai has Egg Foo Yung. It’s not the best I’ve ever had, but it will ease the cravings! I remember Nanking Gardens from my childhood days.

  3. Kk says:

    Nikka market in Goleta has a pretty good selection of Japanese Swiss rolls.

  4. meridith moore says:

    Shanghai on Milpas street has the best egg foo yung

  5. Rex Of SB says:

    I tried the egg foo yung at Shang Hai today, and it’s kind of like that at Szechuan on the Mesa. It’s okay, but still not in the same league with Nanking Garden or Jimmy’s. But wow, what value! Egg foo yung, a spring roll, fried rice and tea for around $8, including tax.

    Next stop: the Rice Bowl on W. Ocean Avenue in Lompoc. It’s been there since 1946 and it just looks “traditional.”

    • Spencer says:

      Shang Hai has long been what I consider one of the best hidden values in town. The lunch special is a hearty and tasty meal for a great price and it has remained fairly constant where many other prices keep rising.

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