The Ultimate Asian Comfort Food

Upon returning from Spain, I had the most unusual craving. For Asian food. Don't get me wrong, Spanish food is so divine in every imaginable and possible way, but that was really all I ate when I was there. Talk about Spanish food overload. But I ain't complaining.

Unfortunately, a bad case of the stomach flu seemed to have kept me from my favorite Asian eateries, but somehow, I don't think that really stopped me. As soon as I felt that my stomach was strong enough to eat food with real taste, I called up my friend Janet. I needed Asian food, pronto.

So, I thought about it for a bit. Well, I actually thought about it a lot, as I was laying in bed most of the day, with my stomach growling, watching the Food Network. (Talk about self-inflicted torture.) Sushi? No. No raw fish. Chinese? No. No fried food. Vietnamese? Yes. Fresh ingredients, and none of that fried stuff.

Enter the Tamarind Tree. One of the (supposedly) best Vietnamese restaurants in Seattle. It's not much to look at from the outside (and it's hard to find), but when you walk inside, it's pretty damn nice. Really nice. Modern design, sleek lines, nice ambiance. Oh hell, it could probably even pass for being romantic. But it was just Janet and me, so let's not get into that.

I had a huge hankering for some Gỏi cuốn (spring rolls), so naturally, we had to order that. Simple ingredients. Simple flavors. Yet when combined, it turns into something phenomenal. You really know what is being served to you because you can taste every single ingredient being used. It's just so refreshing!

And of course, who could ever forget the Phở Đặc biệt, (Pho special), my ultimate Asian comfort food. Rice noodle soup served with rare and well done beef, tendon, tripe. You're probably thinking, rare? Ewww. I'll pass. But the broth is so hot that it cooks the beef. You're also probably thinking, tripe? Ewww. Well, I'm not a picky eater. I eat anything and everything. And tripe is delicious.

Now normally, I make my pho spicy. Really spicy. But, due to the unfortunate condition of my stomach, I couldn't add all of those spicy sauces that I love. Another day, Caroline, another day. But the pho was still very delicious. It definitely hit the spot.

Of course, I paid the price later that evening, but then I asked myself as I looked at my bananas, applesauce, and crackers, "Was it worth it?" Fuck yes.

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