Monday, January 14, 2008

Tastes from times gone by...

Just read the latest post by ReadandEat about her gastronomic exploits during her recent trip to Hong Kong. All the photos she posted on her blog brought back so many memories from my Hong Kong childhood... Oh I miss the food soooooooooooooooooooooo much! Like her I'm a die-hard fan of street snacks like spicy fish balls and little bowl cakes, public health warnings be damned. Salivating over picture after picture of delicious Hong Kong food is however an absolute torture when it's late and I'm hungry for a midnight snack and when I don't have anything remotely resembling anything like Chinese food in my kitchen (apart from ramen noodles).

[In the event I actually went and baked myself an apple and raspberry crumble - this was in the middle of the night! - thinking that I could combat my cravings for savoury Hong Kong dishes with sweet Anglo-Saxon comfort food (and I have to use up my apples anyhow)... But though now I have sated my growling stomache somewhat, I'm still yearning for something savoury - damn you R&E for making me stay up to almost 3am dreaming about HK food!!! (Ah but actually I now remember that I do actually have frozen fish balls in my freezer!!!!!! And I have curry paste from a jar too!!!! Perhaps I COULD try make my own spicy fish balls even though I've never ever attempted it in my life!). ]

Anyway, I was going to write a nostalgic post about food from my HK childhood... one of the ways my brother and I tried to cure our homesickness when we first moved to Ireland was to share with each other our individual "food fantasies", naming all the foods from Hong Kong that we would like to have a taste again... In addition to all the delicious offerings from the shops and restaurants up and down Hong Kong (my parents loved dining out, with the roast pigeon being the signature dish that we always ordered if it was on the menu), one of the things I miss most about Hong Kong are the authentic "tea fruits" hand-made by my paternal grandma, which are nothing like any of the commercial ones I've come across in HK or NY, and I remember also how she always saved the chicken legs for me and my brother whenever she prepared a brand new chicken for our meal (which was for every single meal, including breakfast, whenever we stayed with them. I remember how she killed those poor things for our meals, knifing their necks and draining their blood, while smiling at us with a toothy grin when we stared at her in awe and, it has to be said, horror). I also remember very well the fragrant coconut-and-chicken soup made by my maternal grandma, and how she, being an early riser, would often go down to the street-corner diner downstairs and bought me back a bag of those "pig gut noodle" ("chu cheung fun", also featured in R&E's photo journal!), with a big dollop of sweet sauce specially for my breakfast, even though she doesn't really like them herself (she would pick at a few of them when I entreat her to), just so that I could be set up for the day before I commute to my summer job, that year when I went back alone for the summer and stayed with her...

My dear grandmas (((((hugs))))))), I hope you're both keeping very well and being taken good care of... Words cannot describe how sorry I am for the fact that I haven't been in touch for so long, but I really long to have the chance to eat with you again... perhaps the next time I manage to come visit, I could make you something that I cook myself? I know that neither of you are fond of Western dishes, but my cookies and mini-quiches are not too bad (or at least my mother told me). I hope you both remain healthy and continue to enjoy your food...

Lots of love from your absent grand-daughter...

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3 Comments:

At Tue Jan 15, 06:48:00 a.m. GMT, OpenID readandeat said...

Oh, sorry about that, haha...

It's midnight here too. Your post also made me hungry now.

I'm glad to go back to try everything I've been missing. Looking forward to seeing your next post about HK food.

 
At Mon Jan 21, 06:06:00 p.m. GMT, Blogger Snowdrops said...

Thanks ReadandEat for your really kind comment, and so sorry for the delay in replying due to my work and mad computer problems lately...

Yes I really envy you the chance to go back and taste all those wonderful dishes you highlight on your blog, I don't know when I may have the chance to go back to HK but I promise I will blog about the trip and upload mouth-watering pictures like you did if and when I have the pleasure to taste HK food again...

In the meantime, please continue posting all your great food experiences on your blog so that I can experience such gorgeous meals vicariously through your blog :)

 
At Tue Jan 22, 03:39:00 p.m. GMT, Blogger laichungleung said...

Once you are done with your paper, perhaps you can find some time to visit HK or even Mainland China. Just a thought.

 

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