“I promise, if you are still hungry after this food tour, you can ask my boss for a refund” says Jacky. Together with 8 other food enthusiasts, I have decided to join a Hong Kong Food Tour with Eating Adventures. I could do with some insight to be honest, so far I haven’t ventured further than wonton noodles and dumplings and as tasty as they might be, I am looking forward to having a real local Hongkonger show me around the vast array of possibilities and cuisines.
To wet our appetite, we start off with a few popular afternoon snacks. First up is “Gai Daan Jai”or “egg waffle”. Judging by the queue at this hole in the wall-place, Jacky picked out one of the best places to try this popular Hong Kong snack. The egg waffle is a delicate mixture of egg, flour and sugar, cooked between two round griddles, giving it its characteristic egg yolk shape. Not bad, but the sugar addict in me prefers our second stop where we taste “Nuomici”, a glutinous rice dumpling with a filling of mango and red bean paste. Very sweet and very tasty!
After these filling snacks, we let our stomach rest for a while, while Jacky takes us around one of Hong Kong’s wet markets. Eating Adventures doesn’t only let you taste the local food, they are also keen on showing you the ingredients it’s made with. The wet market sells fresh meat, fish, fruit and vegetables. It’s a pretty bloody affair of pork hooks and cut-off fish heads that are still twitching, but definitely interesting to see where the locals shop! Jacky explains us that supermarkets haven’t taken over Hong Kong yet, local housewives still prefer doing their daily shopping at the market!
By now, we are ready to do some more tasting and head for a small family restaurant. There’s a whole menu waiting there for us: a tasty bowl of soup as a starter, followed by delicious beef brisket noodles and lo soi goose, chui chow style.
I have to admit that I’m pretty full already, but way too excited about the next stop: we are going for dim sum at one of the Michelin-star awarded dim sum places in Hong Kong! Before we tuck in, Jacky explains us about the tradition of “yum cha”, which literally means “drinking tea”. Nowadays it has become synonym with “going for dim sum and tea”, a popular breakfast and lunch-time activity in Hong Kong. An array of tasty dishes is spread out in front of us: Cha Siu Bao (steamed barbecue-flavouried pork buns) Chiu Chow dumplings and fried green pepper with minced fish meat. If it’s good enough for Michelin, it’s definitely good enough for me!
By now I have officially decided to skip dinner. But I always keep a small spot for dessert. We head off to a small place that serves “Tang Yuan”: ginger soup with glutinous rice balls containing black sesame paste. I was a bit sceptic upon seeing it, but it is truly one of the best desserts I’ve had in Hong Kong!
It’s not always easy to venture beyond the “usual suspects” when going abroad, which is why I’m glad I joined Eating Adventures on their tour. The small groups guarantee you a personal treatment and the fact that they work with born and bred Hong Kongers instead of expats is definitely an advantage! If you are planning on visiting Hong Kong, I’d highly recommend them!
Have you been to Hong Kong? What was your favourite meal?
Have you been on any food tour abroad? Where?
Disclosure: Eating Adventures provided me with a complimentary ticket to attend this food tour, as always all opinions are my own!