304 - A Little Tibet Goes a Long Way
By Lauren Gosnell
The traditional cuisine of Lhasa, capital of historical Tibet, is known for its natural healthy foods. Produce is grown without chemicals, hormones or pesticides. Salt and oil are kept to a minimum. At Little Tibet Restaurant, owner Dicki Gongkar Gyatso brings that same healthy, soul-satisfying cuisine of her hometown to Parkdale.
A splendid example is their Spinach and Tofu stir-fry. Favouring organic ingredients, Dicki chooses Canadian produce that best emulates the foods of her home. The dish starts with strips of fresh onion and tomato gently sauteed with some ginger and garlic — a signature Asian flavour. The spinach and tofu are added last, resulting in an aromatic dish that is as delectable as it is nutritious.
Equally delicious is Little Tibet’s lamb curry or Sham Dae — a nod to the gastronomical influence of Tibet’s western neighbours Nepal and India. Chunks of tender lamb are slow-cooked in herbs and a fragrant blend of spices like curry, garlic, ginger and roasted onion. The dish is served with soft plain steamed buns called Tingmo. These attractive dumplings are swirled with yellow turmeric to aid digestion. They’re perfect to soak up the savoury juices of the Sham Dae.
If you want to add even more heat to your meal, order up a side of Shogo Khatsa spicy potatoes — a combination with universal appeal. Another Indian inspiration, this Tibetan favourite is a simple dish. Cold boiled potatoes are tossed into a fusion of fennel, fenugreek, mustard, cumin and kalonji (nigella) seeds.
At Little Tibet, eating healthily is not just a fad, it’s a philosophy. Tibetans strive to live content and compassionate lives. By sharing the wholesome foods of her country at Little Tibet, Dicki’s karma must be very good indeed.
712 Queen St.W.