My daughter had a day off from school, so she and I went to China Star for lunch. I asked the waiter to translate the Chinese "specials" menu, and the dish that sounded most intriguing to us was Five Spice Beef in a Bamboo Basket."
It was served in a plate-sized, hinged basket, with a bamboo skewer propping the lid open. Thin, square-shaped slices of tender beef, flavored with garlic and red pepper were on the bottom, covered with meltingly soft sliced onions and green and red bell pepper, and topping it off were wilted scallions. It immediately reminded me of fajitas, and then the waiter brought a dipping sauce made of soy, vinegar, chili oil and I don't know what else--it was good, and gave the dish a very Chinese taste. The five-spice flavor was very subtle, more obvious in the dipping sauce. Perhaps the meat was marinated with some of it, as well.
This was a spectacularly good dish, spicy but not overwhelmingly so. It was also beautiful to look at.
They do change the Chinese specials--the delicious beef with tomato I had a few weeks ago was no longer offered.
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