Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Authentic Handcrafted Dishes at Shaolin Noodle House

Shaolin Noodle House is named after the Shaolin Temple in Northern China where manager, Kevin Zheng, immigrated from. Shaolin is known for its kung fu and handcrafted noodles, both requiring hours of training, patience and agility to master the crafts. 
Kevin Zheng & I sharing some special health teas!
As an apprenticing chef, Kevin studied Northern China's distinct flavours and soon began managing 200 chefs when he became head chef. His passion for cooking authentic dishes from home compelled him to open Shaolin Noodle House in Vancouver over 17 years ago.
Shaolin Noodle House welcomes guests with festive red lanterns
Conveniently located on West Broadway, Shaolin is close to public transit with access to free parking at the rear of the restaurant. We took the Canada Line Skytrain and got off the Broadway-City Hall station. The restaurant's decorative white awning and festive red lanterns were easily spotted along a row of retail stores.
Shaolin's patrons enjoying authentic N. Chinese dishes
When we entered Shaolin for dinner, we were immediately ushered to an available table. With a seating capacity of 80 people, the space is bright, clean and tastefully furnished with wooden tables and traditional Chinese decor.

Chef Tony working his culinary magic
As we began to read the extensive menu boasting over 200 dishes, it's reassuring to know Shaolin doesn't use monosodium glutamate (MSG) to boost flavours in their cooking. Famous for their handcrafted noodles, made fresh to order, manager Kevin explains they specialize in 4 types of noodles: dragging, cutting, pushing and rolling.

Dragging are pulled, twisted, stretched from a small ball of dough into long, thin noodles. Cutting are short, thicker noodles shaved off from a ball of dough using a sharp knife then placed directly into boiling water. Pushing are cut noodles using a two-handed cleaver from a ball of dough. Rolling is dough that has been rolled thin then cut into noodle strips.
VoilĂ , Chef Tony made dragging noodles in less than 15 seconds!
To see how the noodles are made, stop by the kitchen window by the front entrance where you can watch head chef, Tony, expertly stretch, twist and cut dough into white strands of noodles in seconds! Tony's quick performance made it look too easy but Kevin assured me that the chef has been practicing the art of handmade noodles for over 10 years.
Diced chicken with red peppers & peanuts
Knowing it was our first visit, Kevin recommended their 6 most popular, traditional Northern Chinese dishes. We started with the diced chicken with red peppers and peanuts. Kevin proudly claims this traditional Northern Chinese dish tastes authentic because of the specific timing required during the cooking process. This dish packs a spicy punch and I like how the crunch from the peanuts balances out the tender chicken and veggies.
Sliced lamb with cumin
A surprisingly delightful dish was the fried lamb with cumin. Its flavour profile feels influenced by Indian and Middle Eastern spices with the strong notes of cumin coating the strips of lamb. The bed of fresh green onions and cilantro helped to brighten all the seasonings as they danced on our taste buds.  
Fried pork dumplings
Kevin noted they're also known for their fried and steamed handmade dumplings. The fried pork dumplings are enormous and arrived in the shape of the pan they were cooked in. Their crispy crust gives a light crunch and inside is soft, doughy and filled with perfectly seasoned pork. 
Steamed pork dumplings, my fav!!
I personally love the steamed pork dumplings and highly recommend they go on your "must-order" list. They're like soft white purses filled with juicy meaty treasures and a steal at $6.95 for 12 pieces.
Seafood dragging noodles
We ended with the stars of the show, the seafood dragging noodles and the fried cutting noodles made with beef and broccoli. Loaded with fresh al dente dragging noodles, the soup was heaping with plump jumbo prawns, scallops, carrots, bok choy and Shiitake mushrooms, comfort food at its best!  
Fried cutting noodles with beef & broccoli 
The fried cutting noodles was one of my favourite dishes, the beef was tender while the the thick noodles had a meaty texture and full of flavour from absorbing the savoury special house sauce. 
Special health tea
We finished our meals with two special health teas, a refreshing concoction of herbs, dried fruits and spices swimming in delicate Chinaware. 
A sure thing at Shaolin Noodle House!
Shaolin's dedication to tasty traditional dishes, quick and friendly service with affordable prices keep the restaurant crowded with patrons of various ethnicities and age groups, proving authentic Northern Chinese flavours have a wide appeal.

Candice's Recommendations:
Chicken with red peppers & peanuts $8.95; Fried lamb with cumin $8.95; Fried pork dumplings $9.95; Steamed pork dumplings $6.95; Seafood dragging noodles $9.55; Fried cutting noodles made with beef & broccoli $8.95; Special health teas $2.50

Shaolin Noodle House on Urbanspoon

Sunday, July 14, 2013

West End's Thai Basil Restaurant Impress

As local Westender, I must confess that I've walked by the Thai Basil restaurant hundreds of times and truthfully didn't really notice it was there. This small and quaint eatery is tucked along Thurlow Street, just off the bustling Davie Street. 

If it wasn't for its bright green awning, Thai Basil could be easily overlooked by people passing by but it has garnred a serious local following for their deliciously authentic Thai cuisine! 

My sister, who works at St. Paul's Hospital, has recommended Thai Basil to me several times claiming they offer some of the best Thai dishes in town, at a reasonable price. Now that I reflect back, I've noticed hospital employees dressed in scrubs regularly grabbing a bite at Thai Basil during their breaks. I should have guessed they would know where to get yummy food, quickly.

Opened in 2008, owner Goh and his wife had the ambition to make good, authentic Thai cuisine by using fresh, local ingredients. They've achieved their vision and continue to satisfy regular patrons palates daily. Conveniently located in my neighbourhood, it's too bad that I haven't tried their food sooner! 

It was during my walk home after work did I eventually take my sister's advise and stopped in for dinner.  The interior is modestly decorated with cozy diningroom that seats 10-12 people. So I felt lucky when I scored one of their three sidewalk patio tables! The outdoor seating was a great place to take in the colourful buzz from Davie Street while the cool summer breeze was pleasantly refreshing.

Orders are generally taken at the counter because a majority of their patrons get take-out. After asking for some recommendations from the friendly server working the till, I decided on the chicken satay (grilled skewers), massaman curry (coconut curry) and pad gra pow (minced meat stir-fry).
The chicken satay had a gorgeous golden hue from its turmeric-based marinade with lightly charred grill marks. The juicy and tender chicken breast was savoury, a nice contrast to its accompanying sweet and nutty peanut sauce.
Next came a heaping bowl of chicken massaman curry. Filled with thick slices of potatoes, tomatoes, sweet onion, cashew nuts and strips of chicken breast, my favourite part was the coconut curry sauce. 

Slightly sweet from the palm sugar with a light creaminess from the coconut milk, the curry's bold flavours was rich with complex spicy notes that made my taste buds sing! It's safe to say that this massaman curry has been added to one of my top favourite dishes of all-time.
Finally came the pad gra pow, one of Thai Basil's specialty dishes, served with your choice of minced chicken, pork or beef then served with a fried egg on top of a bed of rice. I learned from the server that pad means stir-fried and gra pow means basil in Thai. 

Homestyle and rustic in its presentation, this is a complete meal in itself. It's best is to mix the egg, minced meat and rice to enjoy the flavours together.  I liked to zing from the sliced red chilies and sweetness from the basil in the minced pork stir fry. The egg acted as a creamy binder and the side fish sauce added more aromatic heat to this tasty medley.

With friendly staff, delicious dishes, and affordable prices, it's a good thing they're opening a second location near Kitsilano Beach this month! Despite their small space, Thai Basil will impress you with their big and authentic Thai flavours.

My Recommendations:
Chicken Satay $5.95, Massaman Curry $7.95 and Pad Gra Prow $9.95.

Thai Basil West End
1215 Thurlow Street
Vancouver, BC

Thai Basil Kistilano
2184 Cornwall Avenue
Vancouver, BC

Thai Basil on Urbanspoon

Monday, June 24, 2013

Pinpin Restaurant is a Win-Win with its Filipino-Chinese Cuisine

Along East Vancouver's Fraser Street corridor is a stretch of diverse Asian restaurants competing for hungry patrons. Offering the familiar tastes of Filipino cuisine with a Chinese flair, Pinpin restaurant is conveniently located on Fraser and E 45th Street. With easy access to public transit and ample free parking along the back alley, Pinpin holds its own by attracting a regular Filipino clientele, a telling sign that the food is authentically Filipino and delicious! 
Since opening its doors seven years ago, owners Joe and Virginia Lee's secret to their success is recreating memories for their mostly Filipino customers from their modern decor with iconic photos of scenes from the Philippines to the hospitable service and classic Filipino-Chinese dishes.  

Both Joe and Virginia share a deep history of family restauranteurs who ran thriving businesses back in the Philippines. Virginia's family operated the original Pinpin restaurant, named after the great Filipino printer Tomas Pinpin, for close to half a century before it closed down in 1999. While Joe's family ran both Shining Star Chinese Restaurant and Hong Ning Restaurant in Philippines. 

Joe and Virginia then ventured to the US shores to open the second Hong Ning location in Glendale Height, Illinois before moving to Vancouver to open Pinpin.

With Joe supervising the kitchen to ensure quality fresh food is being served and Virginia operating the front of the restaurant to maintain friendly and prompt service, we were quickly seated upon arrival despite the bustling restaurant during the dinner rush.

Pinpin's menu is extensive featuring many Filipino regional dishes that are prepared to order instead of "turo-turo" or buffet-style. If you're new to the Filipino cuisine and unfamiliar with the Tagalog language, be comforted to know that each menu item has English descriptions and coloured photos of the more popular dishes.

We ordered the pancit miki bihon, pan-fried noodles, and the most impressive dish on the menu, inihaw fiesta, assorted grilled platter.

Pancit is a Tagalog term for noodles, introduced by the Chinese centuries ago. Filipinos have adapted and improvised the Chinese noodle recipes by integrating them to use locally-available ingredients.
The pancit miki bihon came almost immediately after we ordered, piping hot with aromatic steam rising to meet our salivating mouths. A twist on the typical Chinese chow mein, this pancit was a mixture of thick egg noodles and thin vermicelli rice noodles with a good mix of boiled cabbage, carrots, shrimp, chicken and fresh green onions. A squeeze of lemon brightened up the flavours and helped to enhance the sweet and savoury notes from the pancit sauce.
The inihaw fiesta definitely lives up to its name, a grilled platter party! It was more than enough for two people to share and it was beautifully presented with grilled calamari, beef short ribs, mussels, barbecue pork and chicken skewers and banana-leaf wrapped tilapia.  The calamari and mussels were fresh and had a nice smoky essence with perfect tenderness. 
The tilapia's flesh was flaky and delicate but bold in flavours, with the help from the banana leaf steaming in the barbecue flavours. 

My favourites were the beef short ribs and barbecue skewers. They were gently charred but still kept their sweet juiciness in each bite, flooding my mouth with summer time memories! The complementary spicy and vinegary side sauces brought more taste diversity for each grilled item, while the fresh tomatoes, red onions and bagoong, fermented salty shrimp paste, balanced out the smoky flavours. 
With deep family roots in the restaurant business, Joe and Virginia were destined to continue their ancestral tradition of satisfying palates with the familiar tastes from the Philippines. They have a winning formula with Pinpin offering generous portions, attentive service and delicious authentic Filipino cuisine!

Candice's Recommendations:
Pancit Miki Bihon (Egg & Rice Noodles with Vegetables) $9.95, Inihaw Fiesta (Assorted Grilled Platter) $41.95, and Leche Flan (Caramel Custard) $3.95.

Pinpin on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Haroo Korean Homestyle Cuisine: Richmond's Hidden Gem

Sofia, me & Richard at Haroo
Tucked in a corner, on the second floor of a restaurant complex in Richmond, is Haroo Korean Homestyle Cuisine. Not the easiest place to find, considering there are several other restaurants surrounding the complex and sharing the parking lots. However, I can assure you it's worth the hunt to secure parking and dine at Haroo.

As you enter, Haroo's warm and inviting atmosphere quickly transports you away from the bustling Richmond streets to grandma's cozy diningroom. The country-style decor is simple and homey with bright daylight streaming through the wooden blinds.

Owned and operated by Korean couple, Sofia and Richard, they are known for not using MSG in their dishes. Sofia the head chef, taught others how to cook Korean and Japanese cuisine two years ago, now satisfies palates with her gift in cooking. While husband, Richard, runs the front of the restaurant with attentive and friendly service. 
Corn tea, fried anchovies & congee
When we sat at our table, Richard immediately brought over a jug of cold water and pot of piping hot decaffeinated corn tea. The aromatic steam from the tea was sweet while the subtle corn flavour was nutty and addictive!

Shortly after we ordered, we were served complimentary traditional Korean appetizers of warm bowls of congee topped with fried anchovies and black sesame seeds. I found the crispy and salty anchovies were a nice contrast to the soft, rice porridge. 
Banchan (Korean side dishes)
Korean cuisine typically comes with a variety of side dishes (banchan) and feel they could be a meal in itself!  We were treated to five delicious mini plates including a green salad with raspberry vinaigrette, sweet potatoes, crunchy bean sprouts, marinated seaweed and kimchi. My favourites were the vinegary seaweed and spicy kimchi because they helped to enhance the main dishes' flavours without being too overpowering.
Bulgogi (marinated beef bbq slices)
The first main dish to arrive was the bulgogi, marinated beef slices served on a sizzling hot plate. The beef was tender and had the perfect balance of sweet and salty seasonings. I especially liked the bulgogi with white steamed rice and the abundance of grilled vegetables added great texture to the dish.
Tteokbokki (rice pasta in chili sauce)
One of my favourite dishes was the tteokbokki, thick rice pasta swimming in spicy chili sauce. The soft bite of each pasta noodle held so much chili sauce that I could have easily wolfed down the whole plate if it wasn't for retraining myself to save room for the other dishes.
Bibimbap (mixed rice)
The bibimbap, was a beautiful arrangement of rice, meat, vegetables and a raw egg, served in a hot stone bowl. The fun part was mixing all the ingredients together with chili paste then enjoying the medley of flavours. The piece de resistance was the irresistible crunchy, brown rice layer that developed from resting against the hot stone bowl.  
Pajeon (Korean fried pancake)
Another highlight was the pajeon, Korean-style fried pancake. The accompanying sweet vinegar sauce helped to brighten up the crispy pancake which was jam-packed with flavourful vegetables and tender bulgogi strips.

In a city known for its vast selection of Asian cuisine, it's easy to find a delicious meal. However, to feel like you're being welcomed into someone's cozy house to enjoy an authentic Korean, home-cooked meal, is rare. So I encourage you to visit Richmond's hidden gem, Haroo Korean Homestyle Cuisine.

My Recommendations:
Bulgogi (marinated beef) $17.95, Bibimbap (mixed rice) $9.95, Tteokbokki (rice noodles) $13.95 and Pajeon (Korean-style pancake) $17.95.

Haroo Korean Homestyle Cuisine on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Pinoy Breakfast - Tapsilog

Candice's Cusina's Tapsilog
Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day, so much so, that I begin thinking about what I'm going to eat the next morning before my head hits the pillow for bedtime! However, there was one breakfast meal I grew up loving and it's tapsilog

Tapsilog is one of my all-time favorite Filipino breakfast. It is short for tapa (fried, cured beef strips), sinangag (fried garlic rice), and itlog (fried egg). Eating this hearty, delicious meal first thing in the morning is sure to help jump start your day!

Like many Filipino dishes, there are many different variations of how to make tapsilog, especially the type of beef and how to egg is cooked (i.e. scrambled, fried or sunny side up).

Here's my version of tapsilog;)

1lb beef skirt steak, sliced into stir fry pieces
1/4 cup soya sauce
1/4 rice vinegar
3 tbsp sugar
4 garlic cloves, minced
salt & pepper for seasoning

3 cups of left over cooked rice + 1 tbsp vegetable oil + 2 cloves of garlic, minced
4 eggs, fried
2 tomatoes, sliced
Tasty Tip: If your beef isn't sliced put it in the freezer for 30 minutes to firm up. Once the meat is slightly frozen, it'll make it much easier to slice up thin strips.
1. The night before, prepare your tapa marinade by mixing the soya sauce, vingar, sugar, minced garlic, salt & pepper in a resealable plastic bag. Add the beef strips and combine evenly so all the meat is coated evenly and let marinade overnight, 8-12 hours
2.  Once your beef strips have been marinated the next morning, warm up a non-stick pan to med-hight heat.  Add all the beef with the marinade and place a lid on the pan. Let the beef simmer for 5-10 minutes or until the marinade is almost dried but don’t forget to mix the beef occasionally to prevent burning.
3. Once the marinade is almost all evaporated, remove lid and continue cooking for another 10-12 minutes or until beef has tenderised and darkened in colour.
4. Remove from the tapa from the pan and place aside. On the same pan, heat-up 1 tbsp of oil. Fry 2 cloves of minced garlic to the warmed oil for 1 minute or until garlic is fragrant. Add the rice and mix thoroughly until it is blended well with the garlic and tapa juices.
5. Once the sinangag is cooked, serve it at once with tapa, fried itlog and sliced tomatoes. Masarup!!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Good Cheap Eats at Robson's Viet Sub

Viet Sub on Robson Street
Tucked along a row of Japanese restaurants on Robson Street including Japadog, Beard Papa's and Gyudon Ya, Viet Sub holds its own as a small but popular, family-operated restaurant dishing out authentic Vietnamese comfort food. 
With owner Long Bui
The father and son team, Cuong and Long Bui, opened Viet Sub three years ago and have been satisfying taste buds with their moderately priced banh mi (Vietnamese subs), pho (noodle soups) and salad rolls. 
Viet Sub #1 with Urbanspoon
They were even recognized by Urbanspoon, an international restaurant directory and review website, as the 2012 Top Vancouver Restaurant for Cheap Eats $.
Shrimp Salad Roll
Opting to dine-in, I was offered some complimentary hot tea to go with my starter, the shrimp salad roll. The delicate strands of Vermicelli noodles, crispy green lettuce and cold shrimp, all encased in a thin rice paper, were light and refreshing and best dipped in the sweet peanut sauce.    

Vietnam was once a French colony so it's interesting to see the cultural influences reflected in their cuisine. Banh mi is an example of an Asian-French fusion dish using baguettes for the Vietnamese submarine sandwiches. 
Special Sub 
A must-order is the meat-lovers special sub. Each bite was a harmony of moist Vietnamese ham, cold cuts and meat balls with the crispy, julienne pickled carrots and daikon (white radish), fresh cucumbers and cilantro. 
Yummy Special Banh Mi!
The star was the warm and crusty French baguette! The pillowy white bread absorbed all the juices from the delicious meat and veggie filings while the golden crust added crunchy texture. For a subtle kick, drizzle some of their creamy spicy mayo (Sriracha chili sauce and mayonnaise) on top of your sub.
Special Beef Noodle Soup
To help warm up during the cool spring day, I ended my meal with the special beef noodle soup featuring rare and cooked beef and meat balls. The soup came with all the typical pho side fixings, fresh bean sprouts, Thai basil leaves and a lemon wedge. The basil and lemon brightened the aromatic broth with hints of sour zing and the bean sprouts against the tender beef was intoxicatingly addictive! 
Regardless of how busy and crowded the cozy restaurant is, owners Cuong and Long Bui are usually at the till taking orders with fast and friendly service. So whether you're looking to grab a lunch to-go, takeout a quick snack or dine-in for dinner, Viet Sub is the perfect place for good cheap eats. 

Candice's Recommendations:
Shrimp Salad Roll $2.75, Special Sub $4.50, BBQ Sub $4.50, Special Noodle Soup $6.90 and Chicken Noodle Soup $6.90.

Viet Sub Vietnamese Cuisine on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Aunt Pat's Baked Empanadas

Aunt Pat & I at the Bellagio in Vegas, baby!!
Most people who go to Las Vegas are there to try out their luck at the casinos.  However, when I was there earlier this year, my goal was to satisfy my taste buds by venturing out to the best culinary joints this city has to offer. One of them was visiting my Aunt Pat who retired in a suburb just 30 minutes outside of the Vegas strip. 

When she was a full-time nurse with a family of five to feed, she taught herself how to cook and mastered many Filipino favourites like adobo, bibingka and empanadas. Luckily for me, I've tasted many of her scrumptious dishes and especially like her empanadas which are baked and not deep-fried like some traditional Filipino recipes. Baking is the healthier alternative but her empanadas still come out of the oven golden brown, crispy and delicious!
Baked Empanadas
Did you know: The name empanada comes from the Spanish verb "empanar", meaning to wrap or coat in dough.

Empanadas were introduced by the Spaniards during their colonization in the Philippines between 1521-1898. These hand pies are made by folding sweet pastry dough around a savoury meat filing then either deep fried or baked. Variations of this snack can also be found in regions like Spain, Portugal, Latin American countries and the Caribbean islands.

Did you know: Empanadas are great as appetizers and snacks on the go! The Filipino empanada usually contains ground beef, pork or chicken, potatoes, chopped onions and raisins wrapped in a sweet dough.

When I approached my Aunt Pat about possibly sharing her empanada recipe to post on my food blog, I wasn't sure if she would. As some of you know, Filipinos are usually sworn to secrecy when it comes to their family recipes so they can remain tasty heirlooms to be passed down to the next generation. To my delight, my Aunt was more than happy to divulge her empanada recipe so it can live on for others to make at home and continue to satisfy the bellies of many.

For me, the most important part of the empanada is the crust. While I have made empanadas before, the pastry shell always seemed to be the most intimidating to make because they were tedious, time consuming and better left to the professionals. 
Aunt Pat's empanada dough!
With my Aunt's recipe, making the dough is fast and quite gratifying to do at home. Simple ingredients and minimal need to handle the dough made the job infinitely easier and much quicker to produce. When they came out of the oven, the empanadas had the signature flakey, golden brown crust but with less time and effort - my kind of cooking! So don't be intimidated to make empanadas at home and thanks to Aunt Pat, we hope you'll share and pass this recipe down in your family.

Empanadas ready for egg wash
Tasty Tip: Customize your empanada! Try using pork, chicken breast (cooked & cubed) instead of ground beef or add frozen peas, sliced boiled egg and mozzarella cheese.

Filing Ingredients
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium yellow onion chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 large potato, chopped into 1/4" cubes
1 carrot, chopped into 1/4" cubes
1 lb lean ground beef
½ cup sultana raisins
1 tbsp soya sauce
1 tsp sugar
1/4 cup green onion, chopped into 1/8" pieces
Salt & pepper to taste

Filing Preparation
1. Heat oil in pan over medium heat. Saute yellow onion and garlic, then add potatoes and carrots, cook till soft. 
2. Add beef and soya sauce. Keep stirring to break up clumps, cook for 5-7 minutes. Stir in the sultana raisins and sugar, cook for 2 more minutes. Add salt & pepper and taste and adjust seasoning to your liking. Then stir in green onions in the end.
3. Drain all excess liquid from beef filling. Let mixture cool completely in the fridge before using as filling in pastry.

Empanada Beef Filing
Dough Ingredients
4 cups all purpose flour, sifted
4 tbsp sugar 
1 tsp salt
1 cup canola or vegetable oil 
1 cup room temperature water 
1 large egg with 1 tsp of room temp. water (egg wash)

Dough Preparation
1. Mix all dough ingredients until dough comes together into a soft and oily consistency. 
Steps to making empanada dough
2. Divide dough into two even pieces. Use a rolling pin to flatten into disks, wrap both pieces in plastic wrap and let rest in the fridge for 30 minutes. 
3. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
4. Remove cold dough from fridge and divide into 1/4 cup size pieces, place on a floured surface. With a rolling pin, flatten each piece into a circle about the size of a small saucer.
5. Place 1/8 cup of cooled filling on one side of the pastry. Fold the other side of the pastry over the filling and make sure you firmly press the edges to seal the encased filling with your fingers or with an empanada press. Then place empanadas on a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush the tops with egg wash.
Steps to fill the empanada 
6. Repeat steps 3 & 4 until you finish your dough and filing. Place the unbaked empanadas in ziplock bags and place in freezer. Freezing the empanadas before baking will keep the dough staying crispy.
7. Bake the empanadas until golden brown, 25-30 minutes, and they're best enjoyed with the company of family & friends!
Emapandas hot out of the oven
Tasty Tip: You can freeze unbaked empanadas (without the eggwash) in a tightly sealed ziplock freezer bag for up to 2 months. Simply take out the frozen empanadas, coat with some egg wash and bake on a parchment-lined sheet for 25-30 minutes in a 350 degree oven, or until golden brown. A great way to have yummy appetizers or snack on the ready.
Yummy empanadas!