Dish no. 11: Banana leaf-wrapped blue crab fried rice from Sura (2656 Broadway, 212-665-8888)
Three years ago, Joey Phadungsil came on to overhaul the menu at this modern Upper West Side Thai restaurant and she installed a broad range of regional specialties from both northern and southern Thailand. Her fragrant blue crab fried rice, though, is our repeat order. Wrapped and steamed in a banana leaf, the fresh crab soaks into the rice, imbuing it with briny sweetness and an herbal perfume from the leaf. Mixed with scallions and scrambled egg, it’s large enough to share, though we’ve been known to scarf the entire mound ourselves.
In advance of our 2014 Best of NYC issue, we’re traipsing through the boroughs and divulging our favorite dishes of the year. They’re presented here as a countdown, but we’re listing them in no particular order. Consider this a guide to what’s good to eat in this town right this very second.