In Yiddish, the word “shonda” connotes shame, particularly the shame one group feels when it looks bad in the eyes of another group. Example: “You went to work on Rosh Hashanah? A shonda!” (See also Bernie Madoff.)
I wish I knew how to say shonda in Cantonese because that’s what my lunch was today. I picked up an order of pork noodle soup at To Fu in Roslyn Heights, and when I prepared to heat it up for lunch, I was frankly amazed at what I saw: a murky broth containing sliced pork, limp snow peas, shredded cabbage, sliced carrots and .?.?. zucchini. The noodles? Spaghetti, overcooked spaghetti.
This soup ($8.95) did not taste Chinese. More importantly, this soup did not taste good. I know that Long Island is not a hotbed of authentic Chinese cooking, but really. This soup was a shonda.
How I wish my lunch had looked like this roast pork mei fun noodle soup at Wild Rice in Lake Grove.