Yesterday, Evan and I planned a Queens food walking tour to celebrate both our birthdays (his two weeks ago, mine in two weeks time). Given the wet and cold weather, the walking part was somehow curtailed but the eating remained. After my pilates and zumba classes (and a necessary shower) we headed out to Flushing to eat at Golden Palace, a Dongbei restaurant with ravishing food. I had my favorites (the dry sauteed green beans and the sauteed potatoes with garlic and green peppers--a dish that looks like a plate of spaghetti but is ridiculously tasty), Evan ordered an amazing shredded tofu dish with hot peppers and cilantro that looked like cold noodles and we split them, sharing an eggplant dish with friends that was not as spicy as the waitress claimed but was nonetheless delicious. I really had to restrain myself from eating more as I knew I'd never eat my dinner.
Given that this was indeed food day, it was surprisingly apt that our interim entertainment involved feeding small pieces of red velvet cake to Blue. Ashley had bought some deserts and Blue went crazy--unlike most cats, he is not lactose intolerant (in common with my last blue cat, Lupin), and he craves buttery cake. It's probably not the best thing for him to eat but we're responsible cat owners and only feed him high grade wet food (Wellness, grain free formulas like chicken or turkey), so the odd naughty treat is allowed. The other food-related fun came from watching Epic Meal Time videos on youtube (again, thanks to Ashley and Sam), which was pretty appropriate and fit in with the theme of the day.
Then we headed off to Sripraphai, my second favorite Thai, ate too much, and came back for mango margaritas (effectively alcohol-free for me)--made with fresh Haitian mangos courtesy of Alyssa, and pastries from Cannelle, courtesy of Evan. Queens is renowned for its great ethnic food, particularly Asian food, which happens to be my favorite. But while sticky rice and mango may be sublime and coconut pudding very tasty, I like my deserts Western and my savory food Eastern (except my bread which must be European). You don't really think of Queens for great pastries so when Evan told me about Cannelle I was very curious--it's this amazing French patisserie in a strip mall 15 minutes walk away run by the former pastry chef at the Waldorf Astoria. It lived up to its hype--I cut the 10 assorted pastries into 1/4s and 1/3s and can only say that it might be the best bakery in NYC. I particularly liked a yellow dome that turned out to be a mango/kiwi mousse pastry and a chocolate ganache desert, while Ben and Divya raved about a crunchy praline cream puff. Suffice to say, there were no leftovers. Here are four of the varieties we ate and loved.