Natural Tofu Korean – a second visit

I reviewed the Natural Tofu Korean restaurant (Queens blvd south at 40th st) over a year ago, but decided to document it again last night, when I was there with seven other people for dinner. The outing was particularly exciting because our friend, an esteemed professor from Duke and affiliate of the vegetarian durhamite food blog,  came to visit.

Some sort of soup

Some sort of soup

After everyone ordered their entrees, an assortment of cold appetizers appeared on the table. While most were meant to be shared, everyone got this individual cold soup, with a thin broth and a few vegetables. It was mostly tasteless, but somehow went along well with the other items.

Korean appetizers

Korean appetizers

Here are some of the small appetizers, which included kimchi, some sort of pasta-like dish, and jello-like fish cubes (which I didn’t actually try because they looked a little uncomfortably squishy).

More appetizers

More appetizers

Here are some more closeups of the appetizers. They brought two of each dish, which was plenty for the eight people at the table.

Boiled soft tofu

Boiled soft tofu

Even though the restaurant is called “Natural Tofu”, most dishes deceptively contain meet (typically beef or pork). There are only a couple truly vegetarian dishes, such as this boiled soft tofu pot, which has mushrooms, soybeans , snow beans, and a few other ingredients in the miso soup broth. It truly does come boiling, and you’re provided with a raw egg on the side, which is always fun to crack open and dump inside.

Bibimbop

Bibimbap

Four of us got this traditional $10 bibimbop. It ordinarily comes with beef, but we substituted additional tofu instead. Here it is in it’s original, unmixed state, so you can clearly see all the ingredients. It was good, and with the addition of hot sauce (which is provided on the table), it gets even better, and you can customize the spiciness to your liking.

Seafood pancake

Seafood pancake

When this arrived at the table, someone asked if this is pizza. No, this isn’t pizza. It’s a seafood pancake, which is kind of like a potato pancake, except with various sea creatures (and a few vegetables) inside. It is cut into slices like a pizza though, and comes with a special sauce to dip them in (which you can barely see on the right in the picture above). Overall pretty good, but i think they have better one at Yeti of Heizan.

Cake!

Cake!

As you may have guessed, this cake is not actually from Natural Tofu (I don’t think they have any desserts actually – I didn’t see any on the many, and the waiters didn’t offer any). This was actually a cake form our visiting friend, intended to congratulate us on our recent engagement. It’s particularly humorous due to the missing “s” , and the wrong initials (should be an E instead of an A). But it was quite delicious!

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7 responses to “Natural Tofu Korean – a second visit

  1. Koreans Soups ALWAYS contain meat – thats what gives it flavor so its not really “deceptive” when you were ignorant of that fact.. I thought you were foodie. They won’t put it in if you ask them not to. Seriously you need to try more Korean food dude.

    • Thanks for your comments. If you read some of my other posts and other comments you’ll realize I am not actually a foodie, and actually know very little about food stuff – I just eat it and take picture of it 🙂 . Thanks for the fact about Korean soups always containing meat – that’s definitely useful for future reference.

  2. Prester John: You didn’t spell anything wrong. You were simply grammatically incorrect.

    Mr. Sunnyside: Keep up the good work. Oh, and eat the squishy complimentary side dish. In Korean it’s called “chungpomok” … or mung/green bean jelly. It’s light and quite tasty.

  3. I’m ok with that! I’ll come here for pictures. I’d like to correct my spelling: “You’re reviews” should be “Your reviews.” How embarrassing.

  4. Hi Prester John – Thanks for your comments. I think you provide a very accurate description of what my blog is. I am not a food critic. I just happen to take pictures of the local food I eat and post them to here, and I am not planning on changing that methodology. If you want better reviews, I recommend reading the ones on Yelp; if you want professional reviews, I recommend reading thew New York Times or other newspapers (although there probably isn’t much about Sunnyside in those).

  5. A food critic who won’t eat something because it looks “squishy”…yikes! C’mon. My 3 year old is braver than you. (The term critic is used loosely. You’re reviews can be summed up as “thumbs up or thumbs down.” There’s not much of the critic in you.) You need to be a little more informed about what you’re eating so you can inform the readers. Did you ever read the “shaunaeatssunnyside” blog? She knew her foods and had a punchy writing style. You might try asking the server what the “cold soup” was or if the “some sort of pasta-like dish” is common on Korean tables. While it’s nice to see some pics and get a general review of restaurants I don’t find the blog informative. And don’t review fast food joints and Chinese take out!!!!

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