The Times Finds Persian Stews in the Valley; Gold's Top 10 Dishes of the Year

Lukshon's stuffed squid

For a man who eats God knows how many meals a week, narrowing down a list of 10 favorite dishes from one year can be no easy feat. Yet, Jonathan Gold does his best this week, highlighting everything from silky tofu at Robata Jinya to bacon buttermilk biscuits at M.B. Post. Nothing to be squeamish about here: Korean ganjang goring, or raw marinated crab; dan dan mian in the SGV; Jordan Kahn's rice porridge; Tsujita's tsukemen, cold ramen noodles; Spice Table's roasted marrow bones with sambal; Lukshon's stuffed squid; Playa's maize cakes; and Josef Centeno's bacos round out the list. [LAW]

If a place named Crispy Pork Gang serves anything but crispy pork, one might be suspicious. Gold finds out that this Thaitown spot indeed does serve chunks of crispy, gooey, skin-on pork on just about everything, with papaya salad, in soup, over rice, stir-fried with thousand-year eggs, curry, morning glory stalks, or Chinese broccoli. His only request: "Do you think they'd toss crispy pork in with the mango and sticky rice?" [LAW]

C. Thi Nguyen steps in for The Find this week, hitting Orchid Grill & Kabob for Persian food hidden deep in a Tarzana strip mall. The restaurant is family-owned—note the random family members going in and out of the kitchen—the kabobs are respectable for Iranian and non-Iranian palates alike, but it's the rich and hearty stews that really standout, some tasting "like glowing, homey heaven." [LAT]