Saturday, April 19, 2014

Giando - Convention Eats

Linguini with shrimp and crabmeat
Looking for good eats around the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC) is a bit like trying to find a good soy sauce in Chinatown. There's lots of soy sauce, just none of them are really worth their salt (literally).

The Centre itself is a bit of a lost cause when it comes to food (if I had to choose, I would go to the cafe in the lobby - at least they have semi-decent sandwiches and drinkable (albeit very milky) coffee - but if you're looking for a proper meal, and the Grand Hyatt is too, well, grand, then you're stuck for choices.

About 3-5 minutes walk from the Grand Hyatt, through the garden and overpass, you'll come to Fenwick Pier and the Fleet Arcade (where I keep hearing you can buy cheap magazines from the US ships that come in, but I've never verified that claim). Inside, where Vero used to be, is Giando, an Italian restaurant opened by ex-Gaia Group exec chef, Gianni Caprioli.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Le Salon de Thé de Joël Robuchon - Afternoon Tea So Fancy, Wah

Tiered afternoon tea at Salon de The de Joel Robuchon - so dainty, so fancy, wah
This is a gonna be a pretty short post because there isn't much to report about the JR afternoon tea at the Elements branch. The food is perfectly fine. In fact, it's all very well done, and I rather liked the cranberry scones, although they could be a) a bit larger, b) less dense, and c) warm.

Can I just add that the matte black tiers are chic, but when you remove a moist sandwich or pastry from it, it leaves a greasy smudge. Not so chic. Clearly, the person who designed it has never touched food.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Accidental Cantonese Bak Chor Mee - In The Mood For Noodles

My Cantonese-ified bak chor mee - a vegetarian version with eggplant
So I received in the mail a hefty box of Kang Kang noodles (thanks, Catchon, and no, this is not a sponsored post) and to be honest, I'm not a natural noodle fan. I don't hate them, they're just not the kind of carb I can have all the time, I have to be in the "mood"*. I was going through the box - kway teow, silver needle noodles, Hokkien yellow noodles - nope, nope, nope, not feeling it - and then I saw Hokkien flat noodles and ding! ding! ding! I felt like having 濕炒 (sup chao, or wet-fry. Sounds yuck in English but basically a stir-fry with a heavier "wetter" gravy).

I found some pork mince in my fridge, and pictured a glossy coffee-hued gravy, so I dug out my dried shiitakes, some dried morel crumbs and Mrs. So's mushroom sauce, and oh, vegetarian oyster sauce, which tastes nothing like oyster sauce but more like hyper-concentrated mushrooms with the consistency of oyster sauce. As I was cooking, I found it all a little too savoury, so I added a couple of glugs of dark Chinkiang (Zhenjiang) vinegar and finished it off with palm sugar, Chiuchow chilli sauce and black & white pepper.

It was delicious - and I feel weird about saying this about my own cooking, because I'm not exactly a genius cook (which is why I like restaurants... maybe?) and almost immediately after eating it I realised that I was, in fact, subconsciously trying to recreate bak chor mee.