As a countdown to the Best of the Twin Cities 2016, coming April 20, we're serving up 100 of our favorite local dishes. Here are the best dishes, drinks, snacks, and sweet treats we encountered over the last year.
Using many of the same spices and techniques that make Indian cooking so bewitching, Tibetan food is familiar yet singular enough to remain exotic. The Himalayan is a St. Paul institution which fairly recently moved to the other side of the river. In a modest yet welcoming storefront, they offer Nepali, Indian, and Tibetan, and say they have individual chefs specializing in each cuisine and you can taste it. A $10.95 lunch buffet is a steal: all you can eat chili chicken, fried okra and potatoes, curries, salad bar, roti, rices, and too many other things to even have in one visit. But a favorite bite is Aloo Tama, an ordinary looking soup with the flavor of a roundhouse punch. It's a favorite staple in Tibetan cooking that gets its unusual flavor from pickled bamboo shoots. Black-eyed peas and potatoes turn it into a classic soul food stew enlivened with the holy trinity of eastern cooking: chile, garlic, and ginger. Cumin, coriander, and turmeric work further warming magic. This alone is worth the price of admission.
<!——————————————EndFragment——————————————>90: Boiled Peanut Hummus at 4 Bells