Seemingly a lifetime ago, pre-COVID-19, we dined at Zouji Dumpling House, at 188 Glen Cove Avenue, in Glen Cove, NY, 11545. While we wait to find out who will be President in 2020, now is a good time to contemplate what we ate eight months ago.
Time is an interesting phenomenon. In this crazy COVID world where every day blurs into the next, and every masked face you see looks just like every other masked face. Hmm. Pause to think about that for a moment. What if we didn’t see different skin colors? Would that end any kind of prejudice, stereotype, jealousy, or hatred? This isn’t the platform that discussion, however. We are here to talk about food.
As memory recalls, though, there was something oddly familiar walking into the Zouji Dumpling House. I just couldn’t put my finger on it at the time. But, give it time, and everything becomes clear.
This Chinse Restaurant had me at the facade. Throwback to the 1970’s or so. However, the restaurant only opened a few months before, where Tao’s Peking Duck had a brief run. I loved the look. Sadly, it would be the last look we took inside a Chinese restaurant for nine months. And counting.
There were only four of us there that night, but check out all we ate (all the photos will appear at the end of the dishes in a carousel for your viewing pleasure):
While we perused the menu, asking our Server for their recommendation, they had to prepare us for what was coming. This little, innocent-looking appetizer set our mouths on fire! Now that they scalded, err whet our appetite it was time for the main dishes.
For those who prefer looking at dishes rather than reading about them, here they are. But, nothing is quite the same as eating what you read and see:
Pork Soup Dumpling – Way too doughy for our liking, and not enough soup in the dumpling.
Guo Bao Rou (Crispy Pork with Ginger) – this was a lovely dish. It could have passed for Sweet and Sour. Of course! Everything this year is an oxymoron. So, why not this dish too?
Mongolian Lamb Chop – A staple of Dong Bei (BTW, is it Dong Bei, or Dongbei?) cuisine. Look at the size of this thing (wait for the picture to come around in the carousel). They must have realized it was going to be or Last Supper for a while. Other Dongbei restaurants call this dish Muslim Lamb Chops or Lamb Chops with Cumin. I’m not sure which is correct, but they all kind of taste the same. And that is a good thing.
And THEN it clicked. What was strange became familiar again. These are the same owners as Zouji in Syosset. Ya think that the similarity in names might have tipped us off? Told ya. These are strange times we are living in.
Beef with Scallion – we started to get an inkling that there was lots of sodium (MSG?) in the dishes. Another round of drinks for everyone!
Dry Sauteed String Bean – Sadly, this dish was extremely salty and dry. One of the rare disappointments this night. The other being that Mee V. Stoogas could not join us.
Just when we could eat no more, they had to bring us a little dessert.
Ho Shao (Baked wheaten (?) cake with Beef) – Like a Jamaican Patty, but Dong Bei style!
Humbly submitted for your consumption,
—Mee Magnum (“Chop! Chop!”)
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Summary : Authentic Dongbei Chinese Restaurant