I was born and raised in the SGV, that’s the San Gabriel Valley if you didn’t know. I have called San Gabriel and Alhambra home for most of my life as I’m a fourth generation Mexican American Angeleno/Gabrielino. The SGV is a culinary Mecca and I’m always trying to encourage people to drive just 10 miles East of DTLA to eat out here! My hard-working immigrant community is rich with culinary delights from Mexico, China and Vietnam. Bánh mì was sold at my high school food fairs (SGHS, go Matadors!) just to give you an idea of the culture I was immersed in. I mention all of this because I noticed my blog was lacking in food from the place I love most, home.
San Gabriel is 60% Asian American, and I consider that to be an important thread in my upbringing. I live in between Valley Blvd and Las Tunas and when it is time to grub all I usually need is $10 in my pocket. My mother asked me to chose a spot with either pork or fish dishes, so we made our way up the street to Tasty Noodle House, a spot I had been eyeing near Golden Deli for a minute. Luckily for her, the menu boasted both options and much more. We cozied up in a booth, thankfully beating the major rush, and began to survey our options. Funny enough, we didn’t order anything with noodles, but what we did choose made for a beautiful spread. We started with the scallion pancake, as it’s hard to go wrong with fried crispy goodness on any occasion. After a long look at the menu we decided our main plates would include Szechuan style eggplant, steamed pork dumplings and pan fried pork + jellyfish with vegetables.
I love everything Szechuan because I live for spicy and was pleased with the bold flavors found in the sauce in which the eggplant was submerged. Though not as hot as I usually enjoy (I should’ve told them to go extra hot), the bite of heat with a hint of sweet danced nicely on my tongue. Dumplings are a no brainer for my family and I at any seating, and was pleased with these pork filled treats, that were substantial in size, but didn’t feel heavy. The pièce de résistance was the jellyfish, as it was the first time I had ever tried that sea creature. This is one of the reasons I love my mom, ever since I was a kid, she has been ordering dishes not considered the standard. Seems it has rubbed off, in which I am grateful. When the colorful plate reached the table, I couldn’t even figure out which parts where the jellyfish and when I took my first bite I was surprised that it was crunchy, when I anticipated it to be smooth, dare I even say slimy - I was totally wrong! It absorbed the flavors of the pork, vegetables and sauce and rounded out our dinner rather nicely.
Tasty Noodle House, 827 W Las Tunas Dr, San Gabriel, CA. 91776