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California Chinese Vegetarian

Vegetarian Chinese @ City of Ten Thousand Buddhas/Ukiah

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Vegetarian Chinese @ City of Ten Thousand Buddhas/Ukiah

RWCFoodie | Jan 16, 2005 12:10 AM

Last thursdays Yimster invited ChowFun, Bryan Loofbourrow and I to accompany him on a trip to honor Mrs. Yimster's memory. The place was a Chinese vegetarian restaurant in Ukiah at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, "Jyun Kang Vegetarian Restaurant". Ukiah is a long drive from the SF Bay Area but it is worth the trip to Ukiah to try this creative use of tofu, wheat gluten and vegetables. Our little group enjoyed the following dishes: "Dumpling" (8); which are boiled with a deliciously flavored filling, fresh-tasting and nice texture; "Spicy Hot & Sour Soup" which was very different from what is usually served; I thought it was lighter and cleaner tasting; "Chef Special Combo Lo-Wei" which was a platter of sliced mock chicken - Yimster told us that for a larger group he had ordered ahead and this dish was much more interesting and included more items - this time it was probably the weakest dish; "Sauteed Mushroom & Basil" - very interesting preparation of regular super-market white mushrooms that had been partially split and maybe quickly deep-fried (no batter) then stir fried with Thai basil in a very tasty sauce. The mushrooms were very "meat-like" in texture - very yummy; "Sweet & Sour Bean Sheet Square" - this was perhaps my favorite dish - the name of the dish doesn't do it justice and I don't think I can adequately describe it - I can only say that Bryan said that if we didn't move the plate away from him it would be difficult for him to keep from eating it all - one of the most interesting vegetarian dishes I've tasted; "Golden Nuggets with Ginger" - again one of the most interesting vegetarian dishes I've had - 1" squares of I think wheat gluten that had been deep fried with the thinnest shreds of ginger - addictive, texturally and flavorful - I couldn't stop eating these... Yimster explained that neither onions or garlic are used here as they are thought of as being like meat in a strict Buddhist interpretation; it is hard to believe that this much flavor can be created without including these 2 seemingly indispensable items. This place is truly a gem. I'm hoping that next summer when we make our annual trek to the family gathering at Clearlake I can convince Bob that we have to stop here! The menu states business hours as Mon-Thurs 11:00 am to 3:00 pm, Fri - Sun 11:00 am - 6:00 pm and closed on Tuesdays. Phone: 707-462-3939. The address is shown as 4951 Bodhi Way, Ukiah CA 95482 but the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas address is 2001 Talmage Road, Ukiah. It's a straight-thru drive up 101 to the Talmage exit, then straight into the grounds; if you continue to drive straight, the administration building will be on your right(includes a large book/gift store) and if you continue a little farther you will see a small sign on your left "vegetarian restaurant", make that turn and go about a block or so to the small restaurant building. One last thing: they have many items available frozen to go including the dumplings ($11 for 30) and what Yimster told us is one of the best items, the Whole Wheat buns ($6.50 for 10). Bryan spotted bags of nori seasoned with ginger, cinnamon and sesame seeds - the seaweed had been fried and looked like a good "chip" substitute - I had to get a bag of this and it's very tasty and satisfies that crunch urge ($3.00).

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