February 16, 2012

Comfort Cantonese food

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I was catching up with a few old friends over dinner, and I asked for some sorely missed Cantonese food - knowing full well that we'd end up at Fook Lam Moon (福臨門).  It's been a while since I was last here, and despite my view that the quality of the food has gone downhill in the last year or two, it is still infinitely better than anything I can get in Taipei…

Tofu soup with pork and leafy mustard (肉片豆腐芥菜膽湯) - I was taken aback at the sight of this.  Not exactly your average Cantonese double-boiled soup, but apparently the quality of tonight's double-boiled soups weren't up to par, so this is what the kitchen recommended.

Beef tendon and brisket clay pot (牛筋腩煲) - very, very good.  I am a big fan of tendon, and the big pieces here were extremely tender.  Gobble gobble gobble…

Salt-baked chicken (鹽焗雞) - a welcome change from the usual pan-fried chicken (炸子雞).  I enjoyed this just as much, maybe even more. Delicious on its own without adding the condiments.

Fried giant pomfret (沙律煙鯧魚) - we never get tired of this dish, although with only four of us tonight we did not get a whole pomfret.  Love the taste of the oily bits after frying… and the sweet mayo just seems to work so well with this.

Morning glory with fermented tofu sauce (腐乳通菜) - pretty decent.

Fried glutinous rice with preserved meats (生炒糯米飯) - something that must be ordered during the winter season, since it's just so tasty.  The flavors are still delicious, although I thought it was slightly too moist for my liking.  It would have been better if the rice grains had a little more bite to them.

Glutinous rice balls steamed in apple leaves (蘋葉果) - yum!  I just couldn't resist.  This looks simple, but brings so much happiness when it's well executed.

Coconut milk jello (椰汁凍)

I decided not to bring wine tonight since there were only four of us, but one of my friends insisted on getting a bottle from a shop outside…  The 2008 Tignanello was obviously still very young, with lots of sweet fruit, new oak, dried herbs, coffee and tobacco.  Nice but needs a few more years.

It was so good to catch up with friends over some familiar Cantonese fare.  The topics of conversation tonight?  Bonus numbers at the major investment banks - where a very high percentage of people got big fat goose eggs, and the fact that getting zero no longer means you're next on the chopping block.

The other big news of the evening was the news conference given by the Tangs, where Henry Tang showed himself to be a spineless weasel and pushed all the responsibility of his illegal underground cellar to his wife, instead of shouldering the blame like a man.  Oh well…I feel sorry for Hong Kong, coz he might still be on track to be the territory's political leader for  the next 10 years.

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