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Famous Hong Kong Food to Eat When in Hong Kong
Hong Kong is a city that’s heaven for a foodie. From roadside stalls to world-class restaurants, Hong Kong offers many great choices for food. Here are a few you must try and some extras if you have room for more! Some of these are snacks, desserts and even a main meal.
Hong Kong-Style Milk Tea is a popular drink in Hong Kong. It is made from Ceylon black tea, evaporated milk and sugar. It is said by the locals that you should be able to taste the milk more than the tea. This goes pretty well with Polo Bao aka Pineapple Bread. This is a sweet bread from Hong Kong, found in nearly every bakery. It got its name because the surface of the bread looks like a pineapple. However, the traditional variety doesn’t actually contain pineapple. A mix of sugar, eggs, flour, and lard form a crisp surface with soft bread underneath. Best eaten when hot. Besides that, Egg Tarts is a popular pastry in Hong Kong. Hong-Kong-style egg tarts are made of butter and flour with sweetened egg filling. Since the 1940s egg tarts have flourished in Hong Kong tea restaurants. They are frequently served with afternoon tea. Egg tarts from Taichang Bakery are the most popular with locals and visitors. A famous dessert that you should try when you’re in Hong Kong is Steamed Milk Pudding. It is a milk-based dessert. This dessert is enjoyed by everyone in Hong Kong and Macau. It is a healthy dessert. The texture is soft and smooth, it’s even smoother than soy milk or egg pudding. It can be served hot or chilled, covered with red beans, lotus seeds, or fruits. Yee Shun Milk Company is one of the most recommended for steamed milk pudding.
Steamed Rice Rolls are a classic dim sum in Hong Kong. They are made of steamed rice sheets, rolled and filled with beef, shrimp, or char siu (barbecued pork) with vegetables and sauces. Crystal Shrimp Dumplings (Har Gow) is also part of the triumvirate when dimsum is mentioned. The shrimp dumplings are usually served three to four in one bamboo steamer. Each shrimp dumpling is wrapped in a thin translucent wrapper, with one to two small shrimps and a little pork. When served, the wrapper is translucent, crystal-like and shining, inviting people to put it in their mouths. Each dumpling is made bite-sized so one bite is all you need. The other two that make up the triumvirate are shumai and char siu bao. Shumai is a pork and mushroom dumpling. It is filled with ground pork, small whole or chopped shrimp, Chinese black mushroom, green onion and ginger with seasonings of Chinese rice wine.
In the past, a lot of hawkers used shark meat leftovers from restaurants as the principal ingredient of this snack. Nowadays, shark fin has been replaced by vermicelli as the main ingredient of this snack, that’s why it’s called imitation shark fin soup. Mushrooms, black fungus, pork, and some other ingredients are added to the soup along with vinegar. As a street snack, Imitation Shark Fin Soup used to be served in small bowls and sold by vendors along the streets. Curry Fish Balls are also a Hong Kong street food, made of fish meat and can be served in two different ways. The first is the well-known snack sold by street vendors. This is made of fried fish meat. This is usually served in curry sauce. Another type is the raw fish ball. This is usually served as an ingredient in a hotpot or cooked with noodles in a clear broth. You can find these in traditional markets and supermarkets. Shrimp and Chicken Balls are usually known as the ‘dragon and phoenix balls’ in Mandarin. The dragon refers to the shrimps, and the phoenix refers to the chicken. The name is related to Chinese Royalty, the dragon represents the emperor and the phoenix represents the empress. This is usually served in Chinese wedding ceremonies. The balls are crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. Salad sauce is provided on the side for an extra flavour, to provide a sweet and sour taste.
Dishes You Must Try!
Roasted Goose is another famous traditional specialty of Cantonese cuisine. It is a whole goose roasted with secret ingredients, cut into small pieces and eaten with plum sauce. An authentic Guangdong-style Roast Goose would require a special goose variety from that region. These geese are raised in a short time and have a lot of meat and small bones. Many tourists make this a must-eat on their lists when they visit Hong Kong. Beef Brisket Noodles, known as ngau lam mein, is also a famous Hong Kong dish. This is served with beef brisket, usually braised or stewed, served on top of wheat noodles. Many restaurants in Hong Kong serve this dish. Kau Kee is the most famous one. Clay Pot Rice is a traditional Cantonese dish which is steamed rice in a clay pot. It is a simple creation of white rice with a choice of toppings cooked on a traditional charcoal fire in a clay pot. It is a combination of slightly smoky steamed rice, carved pork, smoked sausage, chicken, or beef, with fresh shallots and a special sauce that has been the extra flavouring that makes it so good. Rickshaw Noodles are a kind of fast food and have been popular with the people of Hong Kong since the 1960’s. It is instant noodles in a bowl of soup filled with a wide variety of ingredients such as hogskin, fish balls, sirloin, and carrots. Due to the variety of ingredients, they come in many flavors and the price is dependent upon the toppings you choose. In the past, this was sold at street corners from wooden carts which were how it got its name. Nowadays, Rickshaw Noodles is still popular in Hong Kong, though most have moved to modern shops now and selling at street corners is now a thing of the past.
Sweet and Sour Pork is very famous in Hong Kong. It has crawled its way into Chinese takeaway menus around the world. Sweet and sour pork is mouthwatering, its pork ribs or tenderloin marinated in a delicious orange sauce. Eggplant with Minced Pork is a Szechuan dish cooked in a claypot. It is widely served in eateries in Hong Kong. First the eggplant is sliced and fried with cucumbers, minced pork is then added and stir-fried with broadbean paste. Then seasoned with red peppers, ginger, garlic, sugar, salt, and soy sauce. The specialty of this dish is, everything is boiled in a clay pot for a while, bringing out the flavour of the minced pork. Wind Sand Chicken is a famous dish originating from Guangdong, and is well-loved by people in Hong Kong. A whole chicken is flavored and put in the oven for approximately 20 minutes until the chicken’s skin turns brown. Its uniqueness comes from the garlic pieces that’s added, making it look like win-blown sand. The chicken is roasted and crispy on the outside and smooth and tender inside. Wontons are a delicacy from China. They’re a type of chinese dumpling commonly found in Chinese cuisine. They’re added to a clear broth along with other ingredients, and are sometimes deep-fried. The Hong Kong style version is to cook it without peppers, but with pieces of salted fish instead. It’s extremely popular and is usually ordered with rice in restaurants and dai pai dongs (traditional licensed food stalls). In Guangdong, phoenix talons are chicken feet. They use the word “phoenix” as a representation of chicken. Though foreigners might feel a bit apprehensive, Chinese people, especially the older generation, are fond of this dish. Make sure to cut off the nails of the chicken feet before frying them. The fried chicken feet are then placed on a small plate, and placed into a bamboo steamer. Once done, the chicken feet are very soft including the bones. This is served individually or with pork ribs and rice.
If you’re looking to try something exotic, you should give snake soup a try. Due to its medicinal benefits and high nutritional value, snake soup is a popular delicacy in Hong Kong. Don’t worry, it won’t look like a snake. It tastes like chicken and mushroom soup. A recommended restaurant for snake soup is She Wong Lam (‘Snake King Lam’) in Sheung Wan.
There are various different kinds of foods to fill your stomach with in Hong Kong. Make sure to give at least a few of them a try while you’re in Hong Kong.