Hong Kong

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At McDonald’s in Hong Kong – Don N. expressing his “delight”

When I was in Hong Kong recently (okay it was a few months ago, maybe last summer?), I noticed a plethora of American fast food establishments around. Sadly these fast food joints were as prevalent as the regular old Hong Kong street food carts (check out the last post about Hong Kong’s Street Food extravaganza here). KFC, Pizza Hut (which has established itself as a fancy sit down restaurant in Hong Kong), and of course the mighty Golden Arches, McDonald’s, pretty much can be found everywhere you look.

McDonald’s is very popular in Hong Kong and is one of the few places that are open really late in the city near our hotel in Tsim Tsa Tsui, so on occasion we would frequent this place, like we do here in the States, out of convenience and familiarity.

Like in the US, the staples of McDonald’s are present here on the menus in Hong Kong, the Big Mac, Double Cheeseburger, Quarterpounder etc. But unlike any McDonald’s in the States, the ones here in Hong Kong serve food items such as “taro pie” in addition to “apple pie”, “seaweed flavored” french fries, and chicken wings, cause why the hell not?

The seasoned french fries were a big thing going on that summer, ads appeared on all the TV channels and in the city corners for these Hong Kong “Shake Shake Fries” from McDonald’s. Basically you take these little seasoning packets like “seaweed” or “spicy” and you add it to the fries inside the paper bag and shake shake shake it all around to get the seasoning on the fries and then, enjoy. I remember the flavors being heavy on the msg but other than that they were pretty good! Maybe they’ll bring this to the US one day. I hear it is also only a seasonal offering at the McDonalds in Hong Kong.

The taro pie was pretty good, the same crusty pastry shell used for apple pies but filled with the sweet purple starchy gooey taro cubes  instead of apples. The chicken wings were my favorite though, fried to a crisp and a wonderful bite sized snack.

before you start eating shake shake fries, here is a instructional video with a “cool” dance teaching you how to properly shake it.


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Seaweed flavoring for the Shake Shake fries




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Keep it cool


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June W. shakin things up!

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Voila! shake shake fries!


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Taro Pie


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looks like an apple pie…

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…with taro fillings!
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and finally, the yummy Chicken Wings…

more from Hong Kong soon….

and on to the next adventure…
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This blog is from a trip I took a few months ago to Hong Kong…sorry for the delay! It will be featured in the upcoming edition of Asia Trend Magazine, so check it out next month if you are in Central Florida!

With all the recent buzz on street food, I thought it would be a good time to post this up!

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In Hong Kong, street food can be found on almost every corner. Some notable foods include skewered beef, curry fish balls, (even 7-11 sells fish balls by their cashier registers in Hong Kong!), stuffed peppers and mushrooms, and dim sum on a stick. Street side food vendors are called gaai bin dong (traditional Chinese: ???; literally “street side stalls”).

Egg Puffs (also called as Gei Dan Jai, Egg Waffles, Eggettes or in Chinese ???) is a famous Hong Kong style waffle usually made and sold by street hawkers and eaten warm on the street. They are best served fresh from the iron. These eggettes are crispy on the outside and taste like little, airy waffle bites. Egg, sugar and evaporated milk are used to make egg puff giving them a sweet flavor. They are made from a sweet batter that is cooked on a hot griddle, a special frying pan with small round “wells”. The egg batter is poured over the special frying pan and heated; the small ovals of eggettes are thus formed. If you’re in Hong Kong, you can pick some up at Lee Ken Egg Waffles located at (next to McDonald’s) at 78 Nathan Road, Jordan (heading towards Tsim Tsa Tsui).


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Lee Ken Egg Waffles on Nathan Road.
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Eggette waffles in Hong Kong, Jordan

 

Bak kwa, Sweet pork jerky meat is another popular street food in Hong Kong. The most popular is Bee Cheng Hiang ???, based out of Singapore but with dozens of shops located throughout Hong Kong. Bak kwa is smoked and roasted strips of pork with a consistency similar to jerky. It is often given as gifts during holidays and is a popular snack to eat on the streets. My favorite was the Gourmet Fusion style which was sweet and had the consistency of a Asian bacon. You can buy some online by visiting http://www.bch.com.sg/


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its beecheng! good.

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see how they glisten!

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sweet pork jerky always #winning.

 

In Hong Kong, stinky tofu or chòu dòufu, is a popular street food item. Stinky tofu is made through a fermentation process that lasts months long, resulting in a smell not unlike rotting flesh or the body odor of a man who hasn’t showered in a few years. You wonder what would compel someone hundreds of years ago to come up with this stuff, maybe it was out of a perverse foodie curiousity or desperation.

My first experience with this pungent fried tofu was on the northern end of Sai Yeung Choi Street ????, the popular electronics store street, in Mongkok at the corner with Dundas street across from Starbucks. I could tell something was wrong about two blocks away from the stinky tofu stall when people started to crinkle their noses and frown, pinching themselves on the nose to hold out the stench. I began to smell something rotting near by. To be honest the tofu, dashed with a little bit of hoisin sauce, tasted not unlike some fried tofu cubes that I enjoy at home. I actually would enjoy it if not for the smell of body odor exuding from the small cubes.


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Look for this sign

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you’ll know from the smell, its stinky tofu!

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Stinky tofu! with some sweet and spicy hoisin sauce

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Tastes great! smells, not so great.

 

For dessert, some popular items are the tong but lut (sweet glutinous rice balls topped with ground peanuts and white sesame) and for summer time, mango pomelo sago soup. This dessert is made with fresh mango fruit, sweet sago cream, sour pomelo fruit and mango juice Honey Moon Dessert was one of the more prevalent places that could be found throughout Hong Kong where you can get some of these desserts. Visit http://www.honeymoon-dessert.com/en_us/

 

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Tong but lut – sweet glutinous rice balls with sesame seeds and peanuts

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Mango Pomelo Sago soup

 

Watch this video on Hong Kong Street Food Stalls

Have you been to Hong Kong before? What was your favorite street food items?
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Your local Orlando food blogger Tasty Chomps! went on a short vacation this summer to Hong Kong. This is the first part of the Hong Kong series, observations and lovely bites and bits on the streets of Hong Kong.

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Victoria Harbor in Hong Kong

Breakfast in Hong Kong

Hong Kong may well be best known for their dim sum, with images of old ladies pushing carts of steamed shrimp dumplings, plump pork buns, and steamed chicken feet with pepper in bustling crowded restaurants.

But there is another type of cuisine in Hong Kong that is popular for breakfast known as cha chaan tang or “tea cafes”.

In the 1950s, while still under British colonial rule, Hong Kong experienced a boon of Western restaurants opening up. However, the average Hong Kong layman could not afford the prices at these “Western” restaurants serving up their expensive dishes. So instead “tea cafes” introduced localized (and cheaper) western breakfast food – eggs, pancakes, French toast, hot cereal, macaroni in soup, coffee, tea, and ‘yin yang’ (coffee and tea combined), a kind of fusion of East and West.

Two popular chains in Hong Kong for cha chaan tang or tea cafe are Cafe de Coral and Tsui Wah Restaurant. Luckily for us, a Tsui Wah was just down the block from our hotel located in Tsim Sha Shui area of Kowloon in Hong Kong, and we frequented it quite a bit for breakfast.

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Tsui Wah Restaurant
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Some Highlights of Breakfast at Tsui Wah Restaurant

The Hong Kong Style French Toast – I dream of french toast from Hong Kong now that I have tasted its sweet, syrupy, deep-fried nirvana. French Toast in Hong Kong is different from French Toast in the United States in several ways, from the thick light bread used to the cooking style, this french toast is hands down the undeniable champion of morning breakfast items.

Macaroni in soup with ham  – This is kind of weird to see at a restaurant, but its a favorite with the kids. The macaroni in soup is cheap and savory comfort food for the Hong Kong soul.

Fish balls and vermicelli in fish broth soup – Its a recurring theme here in Hong Kong: fish balls, those processed balls of bouncy fish goodness. The soup is hearty and flavorful, the fish balls are delightfully bouncy in the mouth and the vermicelli noodles are quickly slurped down.

Pineapple bun with a thick cut of butter – No, there is no pineapple in this bun, but its name does come from the pineapple, where the bun’s cut shaped top resembles the fruit’s outer skin. Slice in half, stuff it with a thick cut of butter and call it a day.

Instant Noodles with Satay Beef – need I say more? these are the same instant noodles you can get at the grocery store topped with some slices of satay beef. Its cheap and its good.

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Coffee in the morning, a Hong Kong Staple
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Eggs and Toast
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Most delectable Hong Kong Style French Toast…rocks.
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Macaroni and Ham soup…it was cheap and it was good.
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Fish Balls and vermicelli noodles in Fish soup – delish
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Instant noodles and satay beef – it does the job
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Shrimp and veggie dumpling

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After breakfast, we took a quick stroll to the Avenue of the Stars, Hong Kong’s Version of the Hollywood Walk of Fame, filled with the names and stars and hand print of celebrities from Hong Kong’s film industry. As a lifelong fan of Hong Kong films, I was literally awestruck to walk by the stars  graced by the hand prints and signatures of celebrities and idols like Andy Lau, Chow Yun Fat, Stephen Chow and most of all the huger than life sized statue of Bruce Lee.

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Hong Kong’s Avenue of the Stars, a great place to visit and see the Hong Kong skyline
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A toy statue of Jackie Chan (its much smaller than Bruce Lee’s)
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I was hoping to meet Andy Lau in Hong Kong but alas our schedules conflicted…jk!

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Chow Yun Fat, recently starred as Confucius in the film
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Bruce “the Little Dragon” Lee, still kickin ass 
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Bruce Lee’s statue at the Hong Kong Avenue of the Stars in Tsim Sha Shui
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