Mooncakes, Revisited

I never cared for mooncakes when I was young and things with the word “cake” in their name involved expectations of chocolate and icing, not salty egg yolks and gummy lotus seed paste.  However, now that there are mooncakes available made out of chocolate and icing, I find myself fascinated with the classic egg and … Continue reading

Buy Local

When Liz Lemon went to the American South on episode 4.03 of “30 Rock,” she ran up against the phenomenon of odd regional variants and complained: “why is everything just a little bit different down here?” Hong Kong has a very high density of local brands and brand variants for such a small place.  Or … Continue reading

An Asia Foodie: Tai O Edition

An inconspicuous Tai O restaurant with a façade covered in faded tiles cooks some of the best seafood on Lantau Island.  My aunt ordered crispy pepper-salt mantis shrimp (aka “pissing” shrimp), ginger-scallion crab, fish soup, homemade fish cake with fried shrimp wonton and jellyfish, and fish with tofu and choy.  Everything was fresh and delicious, … Continue reading

The Sacred and the Smelly

Spirituality is not a big part of Hong Kong life, but religious freedom is protected by Basic Law and slightly less than half of its population practices a religion.  Lantau Island, prior to the construction of an international airport, a Disney theme park, and several booming suburbs on its shores, was once a secluded island … Continue reading

Saturday Errands in Wan Chai

Wan Chai is a very unglamorous neighborhood that has a little of everything.  We walked there after dim sum in nearby Causeway Bay to discount shop at the Hong Kong Professional Teachers’ Union, of which my uncle is a member; to pick-up cheap imported goods at Prizemart (I got Haribo Gummi Bears); and to buy … Continue reading

Island Hopping for the Rest of Us

Today was a day of extremes, from printing the latest chapter of my book on the top floor of the Four Seasons Hotel on Hong Kong Island to sampling the Tofu Grandma’s dau-fu-fa under a makeshift canopy on Lamma Island.  I finished the day back on Hong Kong Island with a mango smoothie and an … Continue reading