By Victoria Merlino
The Queens International Night Market will make its delicious return to Flushing Meadows Corona Park to kick off its fifth season on April 20, serving up both old foodie favorites and new mouth-watering additions. With a plethora of choices and no time to waste, the Eagle is here with our top 11 foods to nosh at this year’s Night Market.
1. Chinese Sugar Painting
A fan favorite, the art of Chinese sugar painting will be back for another year at the market, wowing patrons with intricately draw pictures of dragons, fish and other animals made from molten sugar.
2. Filipino Lugaw
First-time vendor Kanin NYC will be showcasing Filipino lugaw, a dish of ginger-flavored rice porridge. Owner Judy Mai is a self-proclaimed foodie who was inspired to create her business just a few months ago after attending the Night Market.
3. Indonesian Coconut Pancake, Steamed Pandan Cake and Baked Cassava Cake
Moon Man, a vendor that specializes in modernized Southeast Asian street food, will be returning to the market with treats like coconut pancakes, the steamed pandan cake, which is flavored with the juice of the tropical pandan plant, and the baked cassava cake, which is made in part with finely grated cassava root. Nigel Sielegar, one of the founders of Moon Man, told the Eagle that he liked exhibiting at the Night Market because of its friendly atmosphere, both from patrons and from fellow vendors. “In the Night Market, everyone helps each other,” Sielegar said.
4. Chicken Satay Lilit
Indonesian street food vendor Warung Jancook will be serving up sate lilit, or chicken satay, a dish of chicken, grated coconut, coconut milk, lemon juice, shallots and pepper.
5. Rum Punch Gummy Bears
Sisters Nicole and Carly Di Lena of Di Lena’s Dolcini are serving up their popular rum punch gummy bears, something they say they’re known for at the Queens Night Market in past years.
6. Singaporean Laksa Noodles
The vendors of Native Noodles are excited to be bringing Singaporean food, such as laksa noodles, a dish of rice noodles, shrimp and other goodies in a coconut curry sauce, topped with laksa leaf herbs, to the market.
7. Pastry Plug
Why not have your cake and wear it too? Daisy Mijangos bakes real treats by trade, but also crafts fake treats to wear as jewelry and accessories. Her parfait earrings, which she models here, look good enough to eat.
8. Pie Crust Cookies
These cookies are everything to love about pies smushed into bite-sized pieces, with a buttery crust outside holding delicious pie filling in its center. Creator Janie Deegan of company Janie Bakes, calls here creations “life-changing baked goods” after baking helped her find strength while she fought with addiction and homelessness as a young adult.
9. Celery Soda
Look out for the fizzy, refreshing celery soda this year at the market by Italian-Jewish comfort food vendor, Oy Benne.
10. South African Bunny Chow and Kota
Look out for Jaa Dijo Dom’s South African eats, including the popular sandwich called kota, and bunny chow, which is a curry dish in a hollowed out loaf of bread. Charles Chipengule, owner of Jaa Dijo Dom, started his business because he felt representation of African cuisines was lacking.“It’s not like people hate it or anything. They need to be taught what is African cuisine. So I was like, ‘I want to bring this to the people.” I want people to try this, and if I mention the bunny chow, you already know,” he said.
11. Vietnamese Noodle Soup
“Vietnam is the land of the noodle soup,” said Patrick Lin, co-owner of Vietnamese restaurant Em along with his wife Ly Nguyen. Bursting with flavor, their soups will be cooking at the Night Market come April 20.
For more information about the Queens Night Market, visit queensnightmarket.com.