Little Pepper: 5 Dishes You Probably Won't Find at Your Neighborhood Chinese
1. Crust of Cooked Rice With Pork -- This dish hails from Zhejiang, the maritime province just south of Shanghai. The flavors are rich and mellow, and the crunchiness of the rice is a bonus.
This week, Counter Culture settles into Little Pepper, a relocated Sichuan classic now found in College Point, just north of Flushing. In addition to Sichuan, the menu features other regional cuisines from northern China, a bit of Hunanese, and a few Cantonese dishes. You can use this versatility to your advantage when ordering, as in the above selection.
2. Chicken in Sichuan Style -- More commonly known as chong qing chicken, this brilliant dish tastes of toasted red chiles and is perhaps the hottest thing on the menu.
3. Lamb With Hot and Spicy Sauce With Cumin -- The northern Chinese dish flaunts its Silk Road origins, comes heavily seasoned with Asian cumin and Sichuan peppercorns, and undergoes a steaming (hence the aluminum foil) in its final preparation stages.
4. Sautéed Pine Nut and Corn -- This toss of kernel corn, toasted pine nuts, sweet pepper, and Chinese celery is delightful, and might almost be found in Iowa.
5. Braised Sliced Fish in Spicy Soup Base -- Although priced at $39.95, this assortment of fresh sliced fish in chile oil would feed an army.
Next: Three ways to enjoy spicy wontons at Little Pepper
Dumpling in Hot Sauce -- Wontons deposited in a combo of red chile oil and toasted brown chile paste, and dusted with sesame seeds, Sichuan peppercorns, and scallions.
Wonton in Hot and Sour Sauce -- Is hot as hell with several types of hotness and sourness.
Wonton in Hot Sauce -- Is not nearly as hot, but still plenty spicy for most.
Little Pepper 18-24 College Point Boulevard College Point, Queens 718-939-7788
Follow me on Twitter -- @robertsietsema
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to New York dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.