New UTC Food Court

The past few months, the UTC mall food court was under renovations. I was alerted that it had finally opened by Pink Candles at Ridgemont High. So even though I haven’t eaten at the UTC food court in a while, I wanted to go check it out and see what had changed.

A lot of the old food stations are gone, replaced with new ones. All the stations got a sleek makeover with black signs, many with digital screens. A lot of the food stations now also have an open kitchen, letting customers watch their food being made.

As we browsed the food court, quite a few stations offered samples. Finally, we chose two to get food from.

We previously used to visit the Mongolian station. The old one is gone, replaced by a new one called Mongrill. Also gone is the ability to get your own raw ingredients and attempt to stuff your bowl. Instead, the employee gets the food ingredients for you. Lamb also is no longer an option

I took some pictures of the food being cooked, but accidentally deleted them. Oops.

Have you tried Biscoff spread yet? If you’re a fan of Nutella, I urge you to try it. While it doesn’t taste anything like Nutella, it’s originally from Europe and has been spreading in popularity in the US, much like Nutella did.

The spread is made of the popular European cookie. The cookie is crunchy, with a little bit of spices, perfect to eat with a cup of coffee. They are served on some airlines, which is how they started getting popular outside of Europe. I like the cookies, but I like the spread even better.

For one thing, the spread tastes exactly like the cookie. But because it’s in a spreadable form, it lingers on your tongue and you can really savor the taste more. Plus instead of just enjoying it in the cookie form, you can spread it on toast, crackers, eat it out of the jar with a spoon, or use it to flavor all sorts of delicious baked goods.

Biscoff spread can be found at World Market, you can also buy it on Amazonor on the Biscoff website.

Happy Chinese New Year! Look, even Hello Kitty is dressed up for the New Year. Since the Chinese follow the Lunar calendar, Chinese New Year falls on a different date every year. This year, it’s especially early, occurring on January 23, 2012. This new year is symbolized by the dragon.

Last year it was the year of the rabbit, and I was able to whip up a lot of bunny shaped foods. A dragon is more complicated so I didn’t even attempt it.

The new year is usually celebrated with a meal with close family and friends. Traditionally, you are supposed to cook up a lot of food before, and then on New Year’s day, you don’t do any cooking at all. We used to make dumplings, but we stopped. It is tasty but time consuming.

This year we actually went out to eat. Then because I felt like we had to make something for the sake of tradition, we stuck with something easy: scallion pancakes.