Hong Kong is a melting pot of various cultures, and there is no better way to get to know something as diverse as this region than through its food.
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Other than exploring the city and some of its noted tourist destinations, visitors are now encouraged to immerse themselves in the gastronomic delights that Hong Kong has to offer. It isn’t a surprise then, that walking Hong Kong food tours are quickly becoming a trend. Not only do you get to taste really delicious local dishes, you will also learn a lot from these food tours as the tour guides would share the history of the food and the place.
For foodies, Mong Kok, which means “busy corner” in Cantonese, is a great place to start your culinary adventure. With numerous street markets and hole-in-the-wall restaurants, this is the perfect choice to experience the must-try food and drinks in Hong Kong.
1. Roast goose
Roast goose is a favorite among locals, especially when it comes with a ‘crispy on the outside, tender on the inside’ consistency. It is usually served on a bed of white, fluffy rice, and can be consumed either on its own or dipped in plum sauce. According to our guide Jacky, a whole, high quality roast goose can be sold for as high as HK$600 (US$80).
2. Egg tart
If you have no plans of going to Macau but want to have some egg tart, then don’t fret as it is also available in Hong Kong. The flaky crust perfectly complements the soft filling, making every bite feel like a little piece of heaven. They are best eaten hot and fresh from the oven.
3. Dao Fu Fa/Sweet tofu pudding
If the Philippines has ‘taho,’ Hong Kong has Dao Fu Fa, or sweet tofu pudding. Silky white bean curd are formed in small bowls and topped with some brown sugar for added sweetness. These are served either hot or cold, depending on the day’s weather.
4. Black herbal tea
Among the busy alleys of Mongkok is a small stall selling bottles of black liquid which happens to be herbal tea. It is usually served hot in this shop, but can be served cold, too, if you plan to consume on a much later time. According to our guide Jacky, the tea being sold here have health benefits, and the one we tried was good for the liver.
5. Snake soup
For the adventurous eater, your goal of having something exotic in Hong Kong will be fulfilled by the snake soup. The snake meat is shredded, mixed with mushrooms, and comes in a thick broth. It is then topped with chopped fried dough for that extra crunch and thinly sliced lemon leaves to lessen the salty flavor.
6. Dim sum
One cannot leave Hong Kong without eating some dim sum. From the conventional siew mai to the more elaborate stuffed eggplant, dim sum is served in small portions and best enjoyed with tea. Most variants are cooked via steaming, so expect them to be served in little bamboo or metal baskets fresh off the steamer.
7. Red bean pastry
Along one of the busy passageways of Mong Kok is a bakery that seems to never run out of customers. One of its bestsellers is the red bean pastry, and it sells out fast. Each sticky dough is filled with red bean paste and topped with sesame seeds, the combination of which makes for a perfect afternoon snack.
8. Pandan ice cream
Should you be in Hong Kong during the hot summer months where temperatures are crazy high, indulge in some pandan ice cream that will cool you down. The smooth soft serve has the right hint of pandan flavor, and the corn flakes at the bottom is a great surprise.
So as not to miss any of those mentioned above and for a better food tour experience, book a Mong Kok tour with Eating Adventures. This Hong Kong-based tour operator also offers food tours in Hong Kong Island, as well as in Guangzhou and Shanghai, China. The tour starts at 2:00 p.m. and runs for about 3.5 hours, with guests snaking their way around the streets of Mong Kok, passing by wet markets and food stalls. Their guides are fluent in both English and local Chinese dialects, so you won’t have any problem when it comes to communication. They are also very knowledgeable and entertaining, telling stories and jokes along the way. For booking and more information, you may visit their official website.
Note: The food tour was sponsored by Eating Adventures, but the opinions in this review are entirely my own. Special thanks to Wai and Jacky for a wonderful Mong Kok food tour.
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