The Dragon Bowl at Angelika Kitchen: So Perfect it Gets it’s Very Own Post.
“Oh, you’re one of those people.” My Chef Instructor replied, and rolled his eyes at me, after I told him how excited I was for salad day at the French Culinary Institute. After bechamel, hollandaise, and duck confit, I was craving some serious green-age. Maybe it is weird, but by the end of the week especially, I am always craving something heavy on the vegetables. Angelika Kitchen is one of the oldest, and probably my favorite vegan restaurant in the city. With a diverse and creative menu, always focusing on seasonal produce, I (almost) always find myself ordering the same thing. Sure, it is a little boring in comparison to the some of the dinner specials– like the “Nut A-Stew About Nothing” an African inspired ground nut stew featuring roasted cauliflower, sweet potatoes, green peppers, turnips & tomatoes, simmered with ground peanuts, coriander, cinnamon, cumin & cayenne; topped with spiced tempeh croutons, & served with a brown rice-teff blend. But, still, I remain faithful to their famed Dragon Bowl.
The Dragon Bowl is composed of rice, beans, tofu, sea vegetables & steamed vegetables; and served with your choice of dressing. The dressings include the House dressing, a puree of tahini, scallions & parsley, Tangy Basil, Black Sesame– with wasabi, garlic &toasted sesame oil, Balsamic Vinaigrette, Creamy Carrot– with ginger & dill, and Brown Rice Gravy– Brown rice flour roux with a savory blend of herbs, spices & tamari. My favorite is the Black Sesame, a really garlicky delicious mix that goes really well with the asian-inspired dish.
The veggies change seasonally, the greens are usually kale, chard, or bok choy, and last night the vegetables were a blend of winter squashes. The regular portion is just $13, and is the perfect amount of food if you’re hungry (if you’re really hungry try some of their breads and spreads). The bowl also is available in a half portion, which especially if your party gets some appetizers, is the perfect amount of food, and only $9. The Dragon Bargain ($18) and Wee Dragon Bargain ($14) include the bowl (of half bowl) plus a cup of soup and a bread and spread.
It makes a great lunch, or the perfect dinner– especially after the work week and sometimes not so great eating habits. My friend Annie and I enjoyed a meal there on Saturday, and she was so happy to have some nutrients after a day stuck is the office surrounded by sweets. Another plus is the restaurants BYOB policy– it makes it a great spot for a reasonable meal (that won’t bog you down, or put you in a food coma) before going out. Though no reservations are accepted I’ve never had to wait more than 15 minutes, even on a busy weekend.
Angelika Kitchen is located on 12th st between 2nd and 1st avenues. It is such a convienient location, and since I am always in the area, I stop in pretty often. Next time you’re in the area, I would make it a point to check it out, even if you are not a vegetarian, for a delicious Dragon Bowl, or any of their other menu items.