Friday, January 2, 2009

白家高记肥肠粉 - BaiJia Gao Ji Tripe Noodles

Tripe noodles (肥肠粉) are a favourite local snack - spicy and sour, with tender rice noodles and chunks of tripe. It's very cool to watch if you happen to come by when the noodles are being made. Bai Jia Gao Ji Tripe Noodles has a few locations but this one is easiest to find, on the 4th south section of the first ring. The wallboard menus describe no less than thirteen different preparations of tripe - dry-fried, stewed, twice-cooked, steamed - what, no gong bao tripe ding? There are also several other types of noodles and 盖浇饭 (stuff over rice) plates.

I ducked in on a cold rainy afternon and passed up the house specialty for twice cooked pork over rice and a bowl of 素菜汤 (vegetable soup).

Vegetable soup is extremely simple - more of a drink than a dish; sometimes not much more than hot water with lettuce. Vegetable soup is one of the main ways I judge a new place. From the soup you can tell how carefully they shop for and prep vegetables, and any grit in the bowl will tell you how clean the kitchen is. Vegetable soup is also always the cheapest thing on the menu. This version is one of the more unusual - bean sprouts in what is unmistakably tripe broth. It tasted great but there was quite a bit of detritus on the bottom.

Menu all Chinese. Address: 一环路南四段15号 西南民院斜对面

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