About me

Kyaraben
Who is Tiny Urban Kitchen?

My name’s Jen. Tiny Urban Kitchen was born out of my tiny urban condo situated between my alma mater and the other school in Cambridge. My tiny urban condo came with a tiny urban kitchen, hence the name of this blog. It was bit tight at times, but over all, it worked for me, and I spent lots of time there exploring new recipes and cooking methods.

I have since moved out of that condo into a medium urban townhouse in Cambridge. My kitchen has a bit more space now, though my spirit of exploration and creativity has not diminished one bit.

I am an experimenter by nature. I worked as a research chemist for years synthesizing new molecules in the lab. Similarly, at home, I love experimenting in the kitchen and coming up with fun, new creative ways to cook.

I also love eating, and am very willing to travel for good food! That’s why this blog also includes my takes on my various eating adventures, whether in Boston or around the world. I love sharing about my food adventures, and I also love hearing what you have to say. So, please leave a comment, say hello, and feel free to give me your thoughts and suggestions too.If this is your first time here, welcome!

If you’re interested in cooking, definitely check out the Recipes link, which is a compilation of all the recipes on the site to date. If you like Asian food, visit the Chinese Recipes Gallery, which gives you a quick, photolicious way of browsing through the Chinese recipes on the site.  For dining out, check out all my Boston write-ups, posts from other US cities, or food from my worldwide travels.

Interested in the sous vide technique? Here’s a primer on sous vide, including links to several recipes I’ve made from famous chefs like Thomas Keller and David Chang. 

How did Tiny Urban Kitchen get Started?
Check out my entry for round 1 of Project Food Blog which describes not only how this blog began, but really the core of what motivates me and what defines Tiny Urban Kitchen.

Dining Out 
Since I live in Cambridge, many of the restaurants on this site are in the Cambridge/Boston area.  You can check out the “Restaurant Index” if you want to search by neighborhoods. For a fun photo gallery of all the Michelin Starred restaurants I visited, check out the Michelin Stars Gallery. I do travel extensively, and thus you’ll find all sorts of food from places such as New York City, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Tokyo, China, Taiwan and Europe. 

What has surprised you most about food blogging? 
I think everyone says the same thing, and I have to agree. The community is AWESOME. Most people start food blogging to share recipes with friends and family, or to keep a record of all the restaurants they’ve visited – at least that’s why I started my blog. You never really realize how food blogging can connect you to so many like-minded people around the world. I’ve had the great privilege to “meet” people from Europe, Asia, Australia, Canada, and, of course, all over the US. Things like the Foodbuzz Festival are great ways to connect with other food lovers. I never would have thought that starting a food blog would open the door to so many other friendships, opportunities, and experiences.   

What has been the most amazing food opportunity that you’ve had as a result of food blogging? 
No question it would be my trips to Napa Valley (both in 2010 and in 2011) to Napa Valley to blog about the S. Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition. In 2010, Foodbuzz and S. Pellegrino had hosted a contest to send one person there. I was thrilled and beyond belief that I had actually won the contest. The trip really opened my eyes to what the food industry is like. The food industry, especially the restaurant industry, is grueling, and it takes a ton of hard work and perseverance to make it. I was so privileged to be able to see this up close. It really gave me a new perspective and added respect for those who choose to follow this career path. Of course, Napa Valley is also beautiful, and I had a fabulous time there just checking out the vineyards and trying some amazing restaurants! 

What camera do you use? What’s your process in photography? 
I switch between my Sony DSC RX1, (which is more pocket-sized so I carry it around with me everywhere I go) and my Canon 5D MKIII depending on the situation.  The SLR is really big and heavy, so I use it more during vacations and food events that are clearly “camera-friendly.” I would say 80% of the pictures on my blog are taken with the pocket sized cameras. I use Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 to catalog and work up my images, which are all shot in raw format. I then export them to Flickr, which hosts all my images.   

I got both of these above cameras in 2012, so any photos before 2012 were taken with either a Panasonic Lumix GF1, Canon 5D, or Canon 5D MkII, all of which are excellent cameras.

Which posts did you have the most fun making? 
Man, that’s a tough question! Before Project Food Blog I would have said my first 24, 24, 24 post titled “Kyaraben on Steroids.” I spent the day making sushi and other foods in the shapes of my favorite Japanese anime characters. It was a ton of work and took all day, but to this day I still love looking at the pictures of the cute Hello Kitty, Domokuns, Totoros, and Keroppis that I made for this post.  However, I had a lot of fun creating posts for the numerous rounds in Project Food Blog. My favorites would have to be a toss up between the final post in the last round (“Final Reflections”) where I made a moving stop-animation video of Boston constructed out of vegetables (and sang a song!) and the hand-pulled noodle instructional video that I made for Round 7. In general, I love playing with my food and photographing them in different angles, and therefore some posts whose photography I really enjoyed creating are the ones about dragon fruit, meyer lemons, ratatouille, and inside out apples. 

What are you favorite restaurants in Boston? 
My favorite neighborhood restaurant is Bergamot, a place we visit on a regular basis. The staff there is incredible and they really take good care of you. Of course, Chef Pooler makes fantastic food, and Paul makes great drinks at the bar.

Ten Tables is also a favorite. Although chef David Punch is no longer there (moved on to open his own fantastic restaurant), Chef Dan who took over is still great, and executes well thought-out, flavorful dishes reflecting the most seasonal ingredients. The menu changes constantly, so it’s always fun to return.

Before we moved, we used to love going to Garden at the Cellar. The truffle fries alone are the best I’ve ever had, and the rest of the menu is excellent and priced very very reasonably. Since then, the original chef Will Gilson has moved on, and we have moved away from the neighborhood as well.

My current favorite place in Cambridge for casual dining is probably Area Four. They make excellent salads, delicious and creative pizzas, and have a pretty fun beer list.

Hungry Mother (French/Southern American cuisine) is excellent, though really hard to get into because it’s so popular! For fancy dining, Craigie on Main, formerly Craigie Street Bistrot, is fantastic – some of the best food I’ve had in Boston. O Ya (Japanese inspired cuisine) is also an amazing dining experience – hands down one of the best restaurants in Boston. Similarly, Menton by Barbara Lynch also executes incredibly good food. 

For outdoor dining during the summer, some of our favorite places in Harvard Square include Upstairs on the Square, Monday Club [update, now closed!], Rialto, and  The Red House.   Muqueca (Brazilian coastal food) is one of my favorite little ethnic family restaurants, while Mamma Maria or Prezza just might be my favorite North End restaurants (of course you can’t forget Mike’s Pastry or Modern!). Though it’s not Italian, Neptune Oyster in the North End is one of my favorite seafood places – a perfect taste of New England.  For excellent non red sauce Italian, check out Erbaluce.

Outside of the North End, we love Gran Gusto and Basta Pasta, both the original Cambridge location and the new Quincy location.  Giulia is also a super popular Italian place in Cambridge, and Posto makes some of the best (and most authentic) Neapolitan style pizzas.

As for Asian food, because I’m Taiwanese, that cuisine tends to be my favorite, which is why I love going to Taiwan Cafe, Gourmet Dumpling House, Dumpling Cafe, Dumpling House, and Shangri-La. I also love the hot pots at Little Q (more recently moved to Arlington) and the more unique “dong=bei” (Northeastern Chinese) food at Golden Garden, our favorite take-out place right outside of Cambridge. My all time favorite noodles? Hands down the hand-pulled noodles at Gene’s Chinese Flatbread Cafe.

My favorite high end sushi places are probably Uni Sashimi Bar and O Ya, both of which are Japanese inspired but not purely traditional Japanese. For less astronomical pricing, we love Cafe Sushi, which is creative, inventive, and overall delicious. Oishii has been a favorite in the past for traditional sushi, though recently I’ve been a bit more disappointed. Gen Sushi in Belmont is reasonably priced and serves generous portions of very fresh fish. Fugakyu has one of the best sushi lunch specials around and the old Cafe Sushi (before it got revamped!) used to be our favorite place for Sunday evening sushi dinner specials ($1/piece nigiri! – update, no longer available).   

Hi Rise Bakery is one of my favorite bakeries (love love love their vanilla loaf) and also one of my favorite sandwich shops. My favorite ice cream is from Toscanini’s (though his brother’s place Rancatore’s is awesome as well) and my favorite pizza is from Emma’s or Area Four. My favorite burgers are from Bartley’s and (surprise!) Capital Grille, while Bryan loves the burgers at Craigie on Main, Radius (no longer open) and Smith & Wollensky.    

What have been some of your favorite dining experience ever? In the world? 
One of my most memorable dining experiences was at Kyubey in Tokyo, my first real omakase experience.Kyubey is a sushi place right down the street from Tsukiji Fish Market. We got the omakase and essentially had our personal sushi chef for most of the meal, creating interesting bites for us. All the chefs speak excellent English, so it’s very convivial and friendly experience.  

I’ve had some pretty incredible sushi experiences in Tokyo, including the world famous Sukiyabashi Jiro,  Sushi Mizutani (Jiro’s disciple), and many, many others.

As a seafood lover, my favorite restaurant in terms of food is probably Le Bernardin in New York City. One of my favorite dining experiences was at Daniel, where the service, food, everything was so impeccable, it really made for an unforgettable experience. I also love dumplings, and therefore Din Tai Fung in Taiwan (and China!) is also one of my favorite dining places in the world.  

 
Final Thoughts? 

I love interacting with my readers through comments the blog. I like to think of the blog as a forum for communication about food. Although I offer lots of information on the blog, I have also learned a lot of things from my readers. The communication totally goes both ways, and I love it that way!  So please, feel free to leave comments and say hello. I definitely read every single one. :)

Thanks for visiting!

Warmly,

 

 

You can contact me at jen{at}tinyurbankitchen{dot}com
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©2009-2014 Tiny Urban Kitchen
All Rights Reserved

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Comments

  1. says

    My kids went to “one of those schools” in Boston, so I visited a lot, and Mikes Bakery was one of my favorite places. It was hard to get to the North End during the Dig also!
    I’m jealous of your condo in Cambridge! Happy cooing.
    J

  2. says

    Your blog and especially your pictures are fantastic! As a fellow alumni of that other school, and a current employee of the other other school, and a food blog writer, it’s great to find your blog!

  3. says

    Hi Jen,

    I’m so happy to have found your blog! You are doing what I wish I could do right now – live in an urban condo with an urban kitchen and cook up my wildest dreams! Except, I am still in college and perhaps less creative when it comes to cooking. Your work really inspired me today, especially the Totoro sushi and all those cute and yummy rice treats! When I become a mother one day, I would love to do what you do. Thanks so much for sharing your ideas, putting up tutorials and the great photography!

    -Jenny

  4. says

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    Please contact me at mary@cookeatshare.com for more information, to get unique link to claim and customize your profile. Please visit http://cookeatshare.com/blogs/apply for additional information.

  5. Anonymous says

    Hi there,

    Just wanted to say thanks for sharing your recipes. I haven’t tried any of them yet as I’ve just discovered your blog now, but they look great. I’ve been trying to find recipes for a lot of the dishes my mom used to make. She passed away a little while ago before I really got into cooking and thus sadly many of her great recipes are now lost. Thanks to you, it looks like I may have just found a couple!

  6. Anonymous says

    Hello,

    I work for Salt Communications. You recently wrote something about one of our events, Almost Famous Chef Competition. We are trying to get an accurate count of our impressions this year and I was wondering if you could please provide me with a circulation number (visitors per day) of your website.

    I look forward to hearing back from you. Thank you so much. Great website!!

    Regards,

    Ansa
    temp1@saltcomm.com

  7. atiibbs says

    Hi Jen-
    Love your site. Beautiful pictures and reviews of food favorites:)

    I love your pictures. What kind of camera/lens are you using for most of the pictures?

    Thanks

    Amy

  8. says

    Hi Jen,

    I know we have conversed before a tiny bit but I just wanted to recommend Shanghai Gate to you in Allston (where I live). It is really, really good and really cheap. I can email you some suggestions if you go!

  9. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi Paula,
    Thanks for the recommendation! My Chinese friend (she actually grew up in China) highly recommends that place too. It’s such a pain to park around there, but one of these days I’ll have to go try it! I’d love to hear what your favorite dishes are!

  10. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi Amy,
    I have a few cameras that I use. Typically I switch between my DSLR (Canon 5D) or my Panasonic Lumix GF1.

  11. Peggstone says

    I was wondering if you had heard about new sandwich place Foumami and if you’ll try it and review it ;). Unfortunately with my work location being outside the city and the restaurant hours, I’ll never be able to try it unless I have a day off or something.
    http://www.foumami.com/

  12. says

    Just stumbled upon your blog and had to leave a comment. I LOVE your photo with all those Totoros! Especially the sleeping Totoro! Then I was happy to see that you are a fellow Bostonian! Great blog/website! :)

  13. udonhunter says

    Hi Jen, we have pretty much in common (apart from that I don’t have a food blog but I’m happy just looking at yours!). I live near “the other school” and can relate to the places you ate around HS (actually I lunch at Le’s abt twice a week). Cheers! I love what you do and wish I could do the same too one day :)

  14. jentinyurbankitchen says

    No, I hadn’t heard of Foumami, but it looks so very interesting. Hopefully one of these days I can get out there and try one of those cool bun sandwiches!

  15. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Thanks so much for your kind comments about my blog. I totally love my Totoros. They make me so happy when I see them every day.

  16. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi Sixnettles,

    Thanks for your kind words. I visited England back in 2007 and loved the architecture, the culture, and the city (London). Can’t wait to go back!

  17. Marie Eiram says

    Kind regards from Prague, Czech republic! I love your blog, the photos are excellent and I plan to try some of your recipes for sure! Great blog!
    Marie

  18. LostInCheeseland says

    Jen, have been following your blog for ages, do let me know if you want any recs for Paris eats! Happy travels and good luck in the Food Buzz challenge, I’m voting for you!

  19. Supernanajudy says

    Remember me the old ESL teacher? “Pierre,” your “French” cousin suggested your web-blog, and I’m fascinated by what you can make in your little kitchen! I would love to try something out, but I don’t have most of those ingredients in my big kitchen!
    I enjoy seeing your parents occasionally around Sylvania.
    Good luck with the cooking! Judy Arkebauer

  20. Baobabs says

    I spy domokun cakes on the table! stunning food photos that you also take! i am a new convert and have just added your site to my rss feeds. :D

  21. Pam says

    Your Blog is AMAZING!! When will you be visiting NYC? I would love to meet you in person and ask you some questions!! Congrats on the big win! Have a Happy New Year and Happy Cooking :)

  22. Chinajump says

    Just stumbled onto your blog…amah-zing! Lots of catch up reading on your blog! Congrats on winning the food blog project 2010.

    Curan from Auckland, New Zealand

  23. carrie tofu says

    hello Jen, i just stumbled upon ur blog today, eventho i’ve seen your “project food blog winner” banner ad on almost every foodblogger’s site. congrats! i can’t wait to read more of your entries & try the recipes. p.s. i’m from boston too, maybe i’ll run into sometime, somewhere =D

  24. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Welcome! Yes, I love Cambridge too. I actually live closer to the OTHER school now than my alma mater, and I love the vibe of the neighborhood! :)

  25. Srivani Ganti says

    Hi Jen!

    I just stumbled upon your blog today and you are most definitely my inspiration for what I would like to do with my own blog. I only started my food blog last month and I really hope I can do the things that you do! I live in Boston too so it would be so cool running into you some time!

    -Newest Fan of Yours

  26. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Thanks so much Srivani! Best of luck with your food blog and I do look forward to running into you sometime – maybe at a Boston food bloggers event!

  27. Colin says

    Hi Jen! This is Colin here. The guy that came up to you in Garden at the Cellar. It was a pleasure meeting you! Keep up the great work. It always makes me happy to see many foodies doing their thing. Oh, and my Harvard style blog that I was talking about is at: booksandliquor.com.

    I hope you have many great meals ahead of you! =)

  28. says

    Jen, I’m hosting a small group of bloggers at King Arthur Flour’s first Blog & Bake conference in Norwich, Vermont, this June – and I’d love to invite you! I know you don’t bake much, but if you have any interest in it, we’d sure love to have you here with us. It’s just a two-hour drive from Boston!

    If you have any interest, would you email me so I can send you the snazzy e-invite next week?

    Look forward to hearing from you!
    -Allison Furbish, King Arthur Flour

  29. chukbl says

    Hi Jen, I am a Chef at University in Washington State. WE have a culinary week once a year where we bring in CMC Ken Arnone and feature a region of cuisine. This year it is Southeast Asia. I am doing a presentation on noodles. I have been trying to teach myself the hand pulled lamian noodle. I think I’ve got the dough using Luke Rymars recipe and trying to learn the technique by watching your video. I still cant get 6 pulls… Any tips and/or advise?

    Thanks

  30. Sue says

    Jen when I saw the Totor’s I laughed. My brother, niece and I used to watch My Neighbor Totoro all the time!

  31. says

    stumbled upon your blog. love love love it! :) immediately added to my google reader. looking forward to read more of your posts! 

    (i *briefly* stopped by boston when i went to rhode island and new york last fall… would love to go back to boston to explore more! by the way i have family in newton… gonna send them your blog now. :) we’re taiwanese as well)

  32. MaryRose says

    HI! I love EVERYTHING about your blog, especially how you mentioned how you got started with blogging. I’m just beginning myself, but I have a hard time, finding the time, to blog. Plus I don’t have good quality pictures that make it more appealing, ect… Cooking is my passion like so many others here, how did you stand out? I want to help others through my blogs, but I am having a hard time starting, i don’t even have a real blog page, could you please help, thank you :)

  33. says

    Hi Jen, LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog!!!  Can you recommend an intimate place in boston for a wedding dinner for 12?  All we care about is great food & not quite as limited as Menton.  Greatly appreciated!!

  34. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi MaryRose,

    Thanks for the kind words! As for blogging -write write write! I found that practice makes perfect, and it took many many many posts before I started to see my writing and photography improving. As for helping others, it helps to let others know you are there! Comment on other people’s blogs and introduce yourself. Slowly, over time, you’ll become a better blogger and you’ll make great friends as well.

    Best of luck!

    Jen

  35. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi Lauren,
    Do you have a favorite cuisine? O Ya makes some excellent creative Japanese-inspired food, if you like that kind of stuff. Upstairs on the Square in Harvard is lovely, and Craigie on Main is one of my favorite restaurants. I’m sure I’m missing a ton of great choices in Boston. I tend to eat in Cambridge more. I do love the North End, which has some fantastic places.  Here’s the restaurant review index if you want to explore.

    http://www.tinyurbankitchen.com/2009/10/restaurant-reviews-index.html

    Best of luck!

    Jen

  36. Laura says

    Hi Jen, I just found your blog and love it!  I was wondering if you have had a chance to try Oga’s sushi in Natick?  I’m glad to see all of your local (for me) restaurant reviews.  Thanks!

  37. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi Laura,

    I’m so glad you are enjoying the blog. :) I have never been to Oga. I’ve heard that it’s pretty good, but haven’t made it out there because it’s a bit farther from where I live.

    Jen

  38. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi Laura,

    I’m so glad you are enjoying the blog. :) I have never been to Oga. I’ve heard that it’s pretty good, but haven’t made it out there because it’s a bit farther from where I live.

    Jen

  39. Laura says

    You really do read all of our comments!!  Well, if you get a chance to venture down Rt. 9, I’d love to hear about what you think of Oga’s.  We went once a few years ago for omakase and really liked the food.

    You probably already answered this somewhere on your blog, but I haven’t gotten that far…..I also want to know where you think the best dim sum is in Boston (we’ve only been to China Pearl) and where the best soup dumplings are in the area.  My family was spoiled by the BEST dim sum in Hong Kong last summer, and I think we’re wondering where we can go in Boston.  Thanks!!

  40. Shronltb says

    Hi Jen,

    I love your blog! I have made your sticky rice and niu ro mien for my Taiwanese parents–thumbs up! I would love to see an entry for tou hua. I love it cold and hot, with red bean soup or ginger syrup.

    By the way, my husband and I are opening a restaurant in Newton Centre (not Taiwanese food, but tasty. You will like it, he used to work at Radius). Hope you will stop by!

    Sharon
     

  41. Bettina says

    Hi Jen! I just came across your blog while searching about information on Taiwanese sticky rice. I’m also Taiwanese, and I recently pitched a story about sticky rice as a Thanksgiving dish to the magazine I work for, “Holiday Entertaining”. If there’s any chance you can do a brief phone interview about this dish, it would really help me! Please contact me at bettina@contentthatworks.com – thanks :)
    -Bettina Chang, writer and editor

  42. Randy says

    On the list next is making chinese noodles, like those I loved in Vancouver.  Your blog inspired me to get started-thanks!

  43. jentinyurbankitchen says

    Hi Sharon!
    Thanks so much! What’s the name of your restaurant? I’d love to stop by sometime if I’m in the area.

    :)

    Jen

  44. Carolyn Stein says

    Hi Jen,

    I go to school in Cambridge and practically live at Hi Rise, so after reading your favorable review (and of Mariposa – also love that place) I knew I could trust you! Thanks for such a wonderful site and restaurant index, I plan to use it!

    Also, after reading some of your reviews I wonder if you’ve been to East Coast Grill in Inman? Kind of loud, not very fancy, but definitely fun and very good seafood. Plus, Christina’s Ice Cream is next door – the only place that rivals Toscanini’s in the ice cream department.

  45. says

    Yes, I love East Coast Grill. The last time I went I forgot my camera so I decided to wait & return before writing about it. The food is all really good there – Bryan loves the bloody Mary bar. Christina’s – YUM!

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  47. emgibs says

    I just moved to Hong Kong from California and am using your recipes as a primer for Chinese cooking in my very tiny kitchen. Thank you!

  48. Angel says

    I just discovered your blog!  I live right near your old condo (near Garden at the Cellar and Canteen). I love dining and reviewing restaurants too.  I usually add my reviews on Yelp.  Sooooo glad I found you and I have new restaurant recommendations at my finger tips!   – Angel

  49. Echo Shiao says

    i just discover your blog and I’m a fellow food-loving cooking-loving Taiwanese as well(currently based in Taipei)! i would love to start a blog like yours but too bad i’m not so good on the web (can’t even align the picture within my post…total html/or whatever idiot), so i kinda gave it up. but seeing your beautiful site it just inspired me again! hope some day i can share with you my site and in the mean time thank you for such a wonderful tiny urban retreat for me !!

  50. Faith_kroeker says

    I am SO excited to find your blog!  I lived in Taiwan for a few years teaching and I have NEVER found a blog that has such authentic recipes.  I’m excited to try.  Do you have a recipe for Cold mung bean dessert soup?  How about Hot Pot?  Thanks!!! :)

  51. Retno says

    By chance I found your blog while browsing for japanese food. it’s exciting… your blog. great recipes… most of all.. I think you are very passionate about cooking and about sharing your experiences about food etc through this blog. Thank you! For sure I’ll visit again.

  52. says

    Sorry for the super late reply! Yes, there is a cold mung bean soup soup recipe on the blog. There isn’t a complete hot pot recipe, but do a search for hot pot and you’ll find at least one recipe for a spicy broth and another tutorial on slicing your own meat. Enjoy!
    Jen

  53. says

    Hi lila26,

    Thanks for stopping back and enjoy Cambridge! I don’t have any plans for cooking classes right now, but I’ll definitely post on the blog if anything changes!

    Jen

  54. eunhskwon says

    I love, love, love your blog. I’ve been visiting quite frequently and regularly. It feels like I’ve gone to the places you’ve gone to because your posts are amazing!

  55. Sooz says

    Hi Jen,
    Missing my Taiwanese grandmother’s cooking – found your sticky rice, Taiwanese meat sauce over rice, and niu ro mein recipes to compensate. Do you have any recipes for Taiwanese seaweed soup? I remember it as pork and seaweed in an egg drop broth. Don’t know if this was a Taipei specialty. Thanks!

  56. says

    Hi Sooz,
    Thanks for your kind comment! Sorry I’ve never made the seaweed soup before. Maybe I can ask my mom! I think she’s made it before. In fact, I think it’s actually pretty easy -I’ll have to ask!
    Jen

  57. Sharon says

    I wonder if you have read the book The Zen of Fish by Trevor Corson? I just finished it, and even after having worked in a kaiten sushi place in Natick last year, I had so many “oooooh, so THAT’s why they do that” moments. I enjoyed your posts (and video) on eating sushi in Japan, so I thought you might be interested. I also loved your description of the Kinsay Wukong dinner; it was like something out of a Ruth Reichl memoir, vivid and dramatic! And as always, this is my first stop for Taiwanese recipes (sorry, Mom!).

    I have to ask: do you ever get tired of eating out?

  58. says

    Hi Sharon,
    I have not read that book, but thanks for the recommendation! Yes – be on the lookout for another Kinsay Wukong type post! Hopefully coming soon!Re: Taiwanese cuisine – thanks! I’m hoping to post some more! I just need to set aside time to cook.

    As for eating out -yes, I definitely get tired of it. Trips are the worst – you’re just eating nonstop. At home, I can control it a bit more since I basically always eat a salad for lunch at work! 

  59. Liz says

    Hi Jen! I was looking up recipes for three cup chicken and your website popped up! Then I saw a photo of you with a big knife and I thought, hey, I know her! Haha, great website :) I’ll be using your recipe tomorrow to cook for my 25 person coop!
    -Liz Wang

  60. says

    Hey Jen! I was randomly searching for an asian recipe online and stumbled upon your blog. I’ve been food blogging (slowly) for a few years now and yours is the first blog that I’ve come upon where I thought, a-ha! This is exactly what I feel like my blog could be after more dedication on my part. Truly an inspiration :)

    Keep up the great work!
    Shelly

  61. alex says

    Hi Jen,

    I’m thrilled to have come across your blog while looking for a slow-roasted salmon recipe, only to realize that you live in my neighborhood! I’m returning to Cambridge after a six-year hiatus and look forward to reacquainting myself with the local restaurant scene. Your blog will serve as a great resource!

    Thanks!
    Alex

  62. says

    Awesome! Welcome back to Cambridge!! It’s changed quite a bit in the last 6 years. You’ll be most surprised by how Kendall Square has flourished. Tons of good dining in this awesome city of ours. :)

  63. says

    Hey there Jennifer!

    I just discovered your blog as the Winner of Saveur’s 2012 Best Restaurant & Dining Coverage (congrats!), and I think I just fell in love with Tiny Urban Kitchen!! As an SF native/foodie I just started my own SF dining blog. Any tips for blogging babies??

    Either way, keep up the good work! Such an inspiration :D

    CM

  64. says

    Hi Dave,
    Sorry, I’m not an expert on woks. I think an authentic Chinese wok should be made of carbon steel, though you have to season those so you can’t use them right out of the box. They are light and respond to heat quickly. :)
    Jen

  65. says

    Hi CM,
    Sorry for the late reply! Congrats on starting your own blog. SF is a fantastic dining city. It’s one of my favorite cities in the world, a place in which I totally wouldn’t mind living. :) Ha ha, my tips for blogging babies wouldn’t fit in a comment space like this. Maybe someday I’ll write a blog post about it. In short, continue to strive to create great content (keep working on your photography, writing, etc), and write lots! I’m not a naturally good writer but I improved a lot just from practicing. It can be done. And of course, always make sure you are enjoying what you’re doing, otherwise it’s not worth all that time & work. Best of luck!
    Jen

  66. BrianC says

    Heyas Jen,

    Thank you for taking the time to document your food adventures. It was very informative and quite a pleasure to read.

    I came across your blog while researching my what-to-eat on my upcoming trip to Japan between Sept 24-26. I know it’s almost 2 months away still, but I also know that most of the best restaurants in Tokyo require bookings well in advance.

    While having both Ginza & Roppongi’s Sukiyabashi Jiro dinner time slots secured for the night of Sept 24 & 25 respectively, may I ask your recommendation on the night of Sept 26?

    I understand that the blogs were written chronologically, but you typically ended each blog of restaruants you love with “the best” or “one of the best” such and such. Now I wonder you prefer the rice of Mizutani over those of Ono’s? Does Kyubey still hold that dear place in your heart that you would recommend it if that’s my only available dinner slot I have in Japan?

    So far, I don’t have any plans on lunches yet, but I’m thinking Kani Doraku (I know, but for some sentimental reason, it’s a place I MUST visit every time I go to Tokyo), Tempura Kondo & Komagata Doseu in Asakusa. Would you have other suggestions?

    Through reading your blog, I was intrigued by Aronia but unfortunately, they were fully booked for the night. I did have a nice half Japanese/half English conversation with Akiko chan and towards the end of the conversation, she said she “hope” someone would cancel and will contact me if there are availabilities. Despite how much I wish that would happen, I’m not holding my breath for it >.<

    I’ve been to Kikunoi Akasaka before and if I’m really out of ideas, I might pay another visit there. I agree with what you’ve said though, not a lot of the dishes are mind-blowing but the visual portion of the dinning experience does make up for the minor shortfall.

    I hope you’re enjoying your stay in London and can’t wait to read more reviews from you!

    My most sincere regards to you and Bryan,

    BrianC

  67. Jake says

    Hey! Just wondering if you had a contact for the Taiwan Sweet Potato oven in one of your stories from Kaohsiung. The caption mentions a price, just wondering if you knew someone involved with those. Thanks heaps! Jake Raynard chaislandteaco@gmail.com

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