05 Mar2010

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For years, and on multiple visits to Hong Kong, I had noticed the Tsui Wah restaurant located just across the street from Yung Kee. While it struck me as a bit of a “fast-food” place, I thought it must be good simply because of the volume of customers chowing down on bowls of noodles or in line to get in. A local friend smiled when we asked about Tsui Wah, and described it as ANOTHER of the Hong Kong food institutions that go way back (this country must have the most per square meter of such highly regarded, economically priced food outlets). So off to Tsui Wan for lunch…

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Locals come here for quick, delicious comfort food. And it is incredibly well-priced. There weren’t many foreigners when we came to lunch, and you just kind of have to point at pictures and other tables when you order, but it’s hard to go wrong with any of their bowls of noodles. Our friend said the Hainanese Chicken Rice here wasn’t good, so we steered clear of that, but everything we ordered was robust, flavorful and filling!

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Our friend had a bowl of noodles with tofu and fishballs. Seafood broth and flat rice noodles completed this calming and non-jarring dish. I had a taste of this and while good, I prefer more sharply flavored noodles…

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…so I got some prawns and beef tendons with flat noodles in a sour, spicy broth similar to tom yam or even a Malaysian style soup. This was a slam dunk favorite of mine. At HK$32, a great bargain in my opinion.

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Mrs. MM had a spinach and meat dumpling soup also with flat noodles and that was delicious as well. Together with side dishes of veggies, some soft drinks, our entire meal couldn’t have cost much more than HK$45 or roughly US$6 per person! Fantastic!

 

COMMENTS:

  1. ragamuffin girl says:

    Hi MM, there’s a typo in their sign as it should read Tsui Wah :). Their fishball noodles are popular but a street down you can eat better and cheaper ones at Nam Kee (also fastfood and nowhere near as nice-looking as Tsui Wah haha) where the balls are springy and fresh. This is like the Hap Chang of HK, where drunk people go after a night of carousing to fill up. Yummy comfort food at cheapo prices (by HK standards).

    Mar 5, 2010 | 8:52 am

     
  2. farida says:

    Hi MM, oohh, all looked delish. Am just getting supper ready. Too bad I’ve never been to HK. Will just have to feast on the pictures.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 9:16 am

     
  3. Marketman says:

    ragamuffin girl, thanks, I have updated post to reflect new spelling… I think there are just hundreds of great places to get good eats in HK, I would never starve there… :)

    Mar 5, 2010 | 9:27 am

     
  4. i love sta.rosa says:

    MM can I make a request, kaya nyo po ba kami gawan ng mga recipe para sa mga food na yan? love ko po kasi matuto magluto ng chinese food. i hope makakabili ako ng mga ingredients sa SM…. Good Day!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 9:41 am

     
  5. junb says:

    @ i love sta.rosa – if you don’t have access to a good chinese egg noodle. You can actually make them see this site http://localfoods.about.com/od/preparationtips/ss/makeeggnoodles.htm

    for the garnishing, soup, wanton etc…. there is a lot out there just google it. But of course if MM will be able to find time to do hi version that’s a lot more better.

    For me I’m lucky enough as I’m based in Singapore which like HK a cheap good noodle is everywhere for only S$3-S$5 (about P100-P150) so it doesn’t make sense for me to make them :)

    Mar 5, 2010 | 10:44 am

     
  6. niceyfemme says:

    @junb can you suggest the good stalls? I’m not a noodle person but I want to try them to see what the fuss is about! :)

    Mar 5, 2010 | 11:09 am

     
  7. Virgie says:

    Hi MM,
    How about in Manila. Where do you suggest we go for a good noodle, wanton soup, dumplings and siopao to feast on? Cheers!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 11:32 am

     
  8. Joyce says:

    i love tsui wah! thank goodness they opened a branch here in shanghai where the place is frequented by hong kong transplants to the city ( you can spot right away that people are not from the mainland just by their clothing and hairstyles). they have one of the yummiest cha shao buns ive had and serve roast pork with a mustard dip. my friend raves about their kagoshima pork cartilage dish, very tasty but not very healthy hehe. whenever i meet a person from canton, tsui wah has always been on their list of authentic cantonese food in the city. they say hong kong is one of the cheapest places in the world to get michelin starred food. try fook lam moon in wanchai, bit pricier than regular chinese food but top notch.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 12:13 pm

     
  9. junb says:

    @ niceyfemme – If you found a shop that hang charsiew/duck/roasted chicken it is most likely that they sell noodles. Just ask for “wanton mee” about S$3.50 where they will give you a noodle with some slices of meat, leafy green vegetables (Kailan) and a fried wanton and a separate bowl of soup with dumplings. You can opt for chilli or no chilli.

    If you are at orchard then wisma (In front of lucky plaza) or ion has a food court called food republic they do have stall that sell this noodle. Also if you prefer a restaurant then Crystal Jade kitchen @ Takashimaya or if you want a handmade noodle then Din tai fung @ Paragon will be my choice. Happy eating !!!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 2:01 pm

     
  10. Travelers Atlas says:

    Hi MM. Am going to HK for a few days in May with my family . Any other good restos you would recommend?

    Mar 5, 2010 | 3:15 pm

     
  11. steph says:

    @virgie – you can try lan zhou la mien in benavidez st. for good noodles and dumplings. :)

    Mar 5, 2010 | 3:43 pm

     
  12. sAM says:

    Hello! It was fun reading through this post, MM! I picked up a LOT of information from the replies and jotted them all down on my beat-up pocket notebook which contains notes on food haunts to find in places that I like to visit. At this time, I will try to conjure your wonderful experience and drive to the San Gabriel Valley, CA and attempt to find similar goodies in Rosemead and Monterey Park! Chinatown in LA doesn’t offer much when propped against “new” Chinatown , LOL!!! BTW, I will challenge myself and make a batch of the cinnamon rolls just to get it out of my head. It’s been on my mind. Think client meetings and Sam oblivious & wired , thinking desperately how to knead, fill and roll the cinnamon dough in his tiny kitchen counter with no stone slab in sight! :(. The weekend is imminent, and it shall be the weekend of THE roll, cinnamon dust be damned! Thank you too, Sister for your generous sharing. XO

    Mar 5, 2010 | 5:25 pm

     
  13. www.triportreats.com says:

    I love Tsui Wah! Blogged about them twice. Next time try the Crispy noodle with King Prawns and X.O. Sauce and the Soft Roll with Condensed Milk

    http://triportreats.blogspot.com/2010/01/hk-holiday-part-uno.html
    http://triportreats.blogspot.com/2009/11/hk-heart-killer.html

    You should also try Delicious Kitchen and order their PorkChop. It is ZE BEST!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 5:25 pm

     
  14. jay p says:

    You da man market man!

    i often thought the same thing. :)

    thats definitely on my list.

    have you ever tried the macau restaurant in TST near silverchord?

    Mar 5, 2010 | 5:45 pm

     
  15. frenchadobo says:

    never been to hongkong and with all the appetizing photos ,makes me want to go and have an authentic chinese cuisine. though i would love to try a good chinese homemade broth. does anyone have a good recipe for it ?

    Mar 5, 2010 | 10:41 pm

     
  16. Cindy says:

    The husband and I are heading for HK this summer. Can you suggest other good places to eat, esp good dimsum? We’ll be in the TST area but wouldn’ mind going far for a good meal. Thanks again MM!

    Mar 5, 2010 | 11:06 pm

     
  17. juli says:

    Oh how I miss HK fast food. I love Ngaw Lam (Beef tendon) in flat rice noodles.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 11:16 pm

     
  18. dyosa says:

    Ate here when I went to HK last May 2009. I got their Curry Lamb Chops with Indian Roti. It was very good. The thing I like about this restaurant is the fact that it’s open 24/7.

    Mar 5, 2010 | 11:29 pm

     
  19. www.triportreats.com says:

    @Cindy: If you are in TST, Head over to Canton Rd. and look for Sweet Dynasty. They have the BEST Congee and fried chicken also. For amazing peking duck, head over to Spring Deer on Mody road. Walk past Holiday Inn for a few minutes and it will be on your right side.

    Here are other options: http://triportreats.blogspot.com/2009/11/hk-heart-killer.html

    Mar 6, 2010 | 1:00 am

     
  20. marj says:

    you need to make a reservation in spring deer and they’re strict about time. better not be late. spring deer also got good baked ham.

    Mar 6, 2010 | 6:26 am

     
  21. i love sta.rosa says:

    thanks junb ,happy weekend,

    Mar 6, 2010 | 6:29 am

     
  22. Jun Bautista says:

    Hey MM – Just wanna share my all time favorite Internet reference for making HK/Cantonese food at home:

    http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?/topic/75962-chinese-food-pictorials/

    The author of this pictorial has done a good job of demystifying favorite chinese menu items, without sacrificing authenticity. It’s been very invaluable to me just like this site when I need quick “inspirations” in my menu planning, just as your site does!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 7:23 am

     
  23. Gej says:

    Your blog is a must-see as well before traveling. Nice mouth-watering post. The spinach and meat dumplings practically filled up Mrs. MM’s bowl! Talk about sulit.

    Mar 6, 2010 | 9:13 am

     
  24. ragamuffin girl says:

    For those who plan to eat their way around HK, you can check this link. I guest blogged last year.

    http://www.tableforthreeplease.com/2008/03/eating-in-hong-kong-by-our-table-guest.html

    It’s not the most comprehensive list, but will do for those staying a few days or so. If you want more choices as well as smaller, less touristy places (where English is minimal but the food cheap and yummy), you can check out my blog or email me.

    Cindy, for dimsum try Fu Sing in Causeway Bay, Moon Koon in Happy Valley overlooking the racecourse, or Dimsum in Sing Woo Road in Happy Valley instead of the usual Maxim’s in City Hall.

    For popular Cantonese fare try Pang’s Kitchen in Happy Valley. They have fried fish fillet with salad dressing sauce and sweet and sour pork with strawberries! Sounds fusiony (and deadly) but it really works! After all, who says only pineapple or peaches can be used in sweet and sour right?:)

    HK is an awesome place to live in if you love food. And it’s not limited to Chinese food. Michelin-starred restaurants, Western food, Japanese food, fresh seafood and exotic cuisine are just as delish here. I agree with MM wholeheartedly, you will never starve here and you can eat something different every meal of everyday of the year.

    Mar 6, 2010 | 9:16 am

     
  25. betty q. says:

    Frenchadobo: it depends on whatyou plan to use the broth for…say for instance if you want to make the Beef Brisket noodle like Taiwanese style, start with trimmed Beef Brisket, just brown or sear quickly, then put that in a big pot. …then whack a huge knob of ginger, bruise some green onion or scallion stalks, add to hot pan (the same one uyoubrowned the beef). and fry till fragrant, …deglaze with beef stock if you have it or water will do…add a few tbsp. of hoisin, chee house asuce, light soy, add some star anise and more water. Season. and adjust taste. Let it come to a boil and then lower heat to just barely simmering. Skim the fat. When tender, leave the beef in there to cool . Refrigrate. Next day, skimm off the fat layer. Take the beef out and cut into thin slices. Heat the broth. Serve with noodles in bowl, top with sliced beef brisket, and chopped canned chinese cabbage, a touch of sesame oil.

    Now if you want to make PRAWN DUMPLING SOUP (which is what people request from me all the time…believeme, do this and you will have many more friends!)…start with the dumplings or wontons…Para isa na lang hirap, make a few hundred…..my recipe will yield about 200 prawn or shrimp[ wontons. Start with the shrimp or prawns. Buy whatever is on sale…to yield about 2 and 3/4 kg.(after you have peeled them). Then devein and soak in a brine…. put the shrimp ina bowl and add about 3 tbsp. rock salt and cover with COLD water and mix till salt is disssolved. Let it sit in the cooler for about 15 minutes. Drain and rinse thoroughly and drain again. Repeat the brine treatment for another 15 mi nutes. Then drain again and rinse thoroughly under cold running water. Drain. NOw take a handful of the shrimp or prawns and SQUEEZE the water out of it. Don’t be gentle. It doesn’t matter whther they get squished. You will cut them into pieces anyway and some you will finely mince. When all the prawns have been all squished, cut about 2/3 of it into big chunky pieces. The other 1/3, FINELY MINCE TILL THEY TURN ALMOST PASTY. Now, put everything in a bowl. OK….you have Chinese soup spoon? Put about 3 soup spoons of sugar (THIS MAY SEEM A LOT but it will just balance out when you brined the shrimp), three “twirls ” of sesame oil, a few dashes of white pepper, 3 lightly beaten eggwhites, mix that togethere and let it sit for 20 minutes….add 8 to 10 soup spoons of cornstarch…mix together until smooth and throw the prawn mixture against the sides of the bowl until it comes togther. Now, ages ago, when people are not “ewwy” about adding finely minced pork fat, you can add it too. It just helps solidify the mixture as well. You can do without it.

    Then….try to get the wonton wrapper with egg (it is more pliable…does not tear easily when in the broth…it looks soooooo yellow!), I know you will ask where to get them. If oyu are in Vancouver, mu suki is in Chinatown. She does not sell them to the madlang people. You have to ask her for the YELLOW WONTON WRAPPER. I will check out the name of the store if anyone is interested since I do not look at the store name when I go there.

    Then your broth….pork /chicken bones…bring a pot of water to a boil and add the bones just to blanch them…Drain and rinse thoroughly. Put back in the pot and stat with cold water. Add a knob of goinger, some bruised green onion stalks, Do not season at this point. Just add some white peppercorns. Bring it to a boil and quickly turn the heat to simmering. You do not want it to BOIL or you will end up with a cloudy broth. It should be barely simmering so it will be clear.
    Then drain and season. Some people add hibe while boiling the broth….I don’t since the dumplings taste “shrimpy ” enough. That is your broth….Serve tthe dumplings (put some in apot of boiling water…it doesn’t take long to cook…when they float, it is done) in abowl with the noodles, top with thinly sliced scallions ona diagonal and a drop of sesame oil.

    Oh, the other dumplings once you have stuffed them into the wonton wrappers, lay in a single layer ona wax paper lind cookie sheet and freeze. When frozen, pack them in zip plck bags.

    Hey Connie C…you can have a prwn dumpling wrapping party, too! Imbitahin mo si San!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 9:37 am

     
  26. Anton says:

    I love Tsui Wah curry dishes! I always get their vegetable curry!!!

    Pang’s Kitchen is VERY good. Their friend chicken reminds me of Sincerity in BInondo.

    I would like to try the Dimsum place in Happy Valley besides Lotus Garden Desserts. It’s always full though.

    Mar 6, 2010 | 11:32 am

     
  27. Anton says:

    There is a Taiwanese dumpling place in SIlvercord that is also pinipilahan. Go there during the weekday as weekends are packed.

    Another place to look at is Tim Ho Wan in Mongkok….now this place is always full. Lines can be so long it takes two hours to wait! One Michelin star!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 11:34 am

     
  28. Anton says:

    For me, the best noodle dish in the Philippines is still in Benavidez St…what used to be Ma Mun Lok…now called Masuki, I think.

    For Congee, I love Panciteria Lido’s version, yung may ginger. It’s in T. Alonzo St. near Ongpin. But there is also one on West Avenue in QC near the SM North area. (It was still there 2 years ago!)

    Mar 6, 2010 | 11:40 am

     
  29. Anton says:

    @ragmuffin girl…Am a Tsinoy in HK too!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 11:44 am

     
  30. niceyfemme says:

    @junb – thanks! sus yun lang pala ang tawag sa version dito…. i eat this once in a while and it’s nice! will try the places you mentioned thanks again

    Mar 6, 2010 | 3:12 pm

     
  31. Lee says:

    I love Hong Kong. Met up with my wife there during the last week of February and stayed in Hotel Jen.. which by the way is also my wife’s name. Just outside the hotel are quaint little food shops selling dumplings, dim sum, noodles and others. There was an obvious language divide but food does not need a commonality in dialect and most of the menu have English translation anyway. There was a Mcdonalds and KFC nearby but I swore not to cast my shadow in those places while on vacation. Eat Mcdo in Hong Kong???? crazy.
    A friend who owns a catering business treated us to a Peking Duck meal in Peking Garden somewhere near the elevated walkways from the Star Ferry pier and it was amazing for us not to feel bad even after seeing Donald and Mickey… we didn’t have any mickey for dinner.

    Mar 6, 2010 | 6:04 pm

     
  32. hannah says:

    When in HK, Tsui Wah is always a stop. Best also for late night dining. Thanks MM!

    Mar 6, 2010 | 10:12 pm

     
  33. frenchadobo says:

    thanks a lot betty q ! you’re such a cooking fairy! how i wish neighbor kita. unfortunately, i’m not from vancouver. i live near paris. so sometimes you can just imagine the difficulty finding some asian ingredients. plus the price of asian stuffs here cost an arm and leg! by the way, can i have your email address please ? i have other things to ask you. thanks in advance .

    Mar 7, 2010 | 4:47 pm

     
  34. Anna Gan says:

    Tsui Wah is the best for cheap and yummy eats :D first thing I’m having if I ever get to go back is the curry lengua with lots of rice!

    Mar 14, 2010 | 11:07 am

     
 

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