Foodie's Counter · Weekly Obsessions

Weekly Obsessions, part 6 – Food at Guangzhou, China edition

Food in Canton

While I was away in Guangzhou, China aka Canton, I was terribly homesick. I miss my dear bed, my dear warm bathroom floor, my dear fresh air. What I’ll kinda miss from my birthplace Guangzhou is the food. Why I say kinda, it’s because the food might be very good, I also get numb to it pretty fast. If only I could gather all of my favorite eatable things into one little restaurant and place it in Helsinki so that I can visit couple of times per month, it would be perfect. So here are five things I would love to put into that little restaurant, aka eatable things I would miss the most from Guangzhou. All foodporn shown in this entry was taken with my shitty cellphone camera.

1. Personal Hot Pot

20151225_134555I love the regular hot pot a lot already. It’s the ultimate social food where there is a large pot of boiling soup in the middle of the table, surrounding it different raw meat, fish, vegetables and noodles etc and eaters would put the raw stuff in the hot soup to boil it. It’s a lot of waiting and chatting and eating delicious healthy boiled food. It’s a really long process, usually it would take at least two to three hours to eat hot pot. There is a new trend around Asian countries. The traditional one big pot is shared between friends and family, which is of course quite common in Asia, but that kind of intimate sharing is not that common in Western countries. So the new trend is, instead of one big pot, there are tiny one person small pots, one for each eater. You can choose your own kind of soup base, spicy or mild, meaty or vegetarian. Then you can either order raw stuff to share or just to yourself. The personal hot pot is super fun, much quicker than the one big thing, but the chatting and social aspect still remains. The hot pot restaurant I visited had a spectacular sauce buffet table, there were literally tens of different kind of sauce and oil and stuff like dry onion, garlic and chopped leek from which you can make your own mixture of dip for the cooked meat and veggies. Heavenly! ❤

2. Shan Shi cuisine

Shanshi cuisine

Guangzhou aka Cantonese cuisine is the best that there is, but that’s because I’m Cantonese. I’m super proud of my heritage, but sometimes it seems like that not all Cantonese are as proud, at least not with their own cuisine. They are not big at keeping their own food traditions, they are more into creating new stuff from the old stuff, instead of mastering the traditions. Lots of things I used to eat and love when I was young, I couldn’t find anymore anywhere. Instead, cuisines from other cities and places in China, which are less colorful than Cantonese, but they mastered their craft. I fell for this restaurant that serves excellent Shan Shi cuisine. Shan shi cuisine is mainly focused on tasty spicy oil, chilis and vinegar, hand-made noodles and various lamb dishes. I’ve visited three times and every time the food was excellent, simple tastes yet endlessly delicious.

3. Dim sum – the Chinese tapas

This is through and through a Cantonese thing. Tiny dishes, most usually steamed, eaten usually as breakfast, is my old love. And also something I now have a love/hate relationship towards. I love dim sums, but I also have very high expectations towards them. Therefore I often get disappointed at the quality of certain dishes. For really good dim sums you need to know a local. Just remember, old restaurants don’t mean they’re automatically good, expensive places don’t mean they know what they are doing. Be adventurous when it comes to ordering dim sums, cos chicken feet are seriously really good.

4. The Bread is Ready – bakery

Bread is ready

I already fangirl over these last week, but this times it’s about a particular bakery called ”Bread is Ready”. It’s a cutest little place with fresh bread, unusual combinations and tasty drinks. They work as any bakeries in Canton and Hong Kong, different bread are on display in see-through cupboards. You grab a plastic tray and tongs and off you go to ’shop’ for the bread and cake you want. See anything you like, just open the cupboard and grab a piece. When you have gathered a trayful full of bread and cakes, you bring your tray to the cashier and they would put every piece of your bread in tiny individual plastic bags. The basic ’system’ is the same at ”Bread is Ready”, they just have something extra in their display of baked goods. You would see some tiny paper time stickers poking off the some bread, indicating the time the bread came out of the oven. The less fresh the bread, the cheaper that bread becomes. Let’s say the bread has been ready for two hours, it would be 20 % off the price, three hours 30 % and four hours 40% and so forth. Bread with no time stickers are fresh off the oven or less than an hour. I think this system is very good. I’m the kind that is more than ready to pay the full price for some fresh bread, but many wouldn’t mind a less fresh piece for a discounted price. In that way, so-called ’old’ bread would get sold more easily, and therefore there would be less waste. What a brilliant idea!

5. Tea

Coffee is not that good in Canton, but the tea is so very good. I drink a lot of tea when I’m in Canton, because I usually visit during winter and when the weather is cold, I don’t want any cold drink. Hot water is horrible, so tea it is. The excellent green tea iron buddha is my favorite whenever I’m eating in Cantonese restaurants. But when I’m at bakeries like the one I mentioned above, my favorite is definitely milk tea, especially bubble milk tea. Various teas are very good sold in bottles too from supermarkets and kiosks, some kiosks even keep the bottled milk tea and tea in a fridge-like thingy that instead of cold is hot. Milk teas are usually already sweetened, so if you don’t like sugar in your milk tea, avoid these in Canton.

Next on Kinky Tuesday – B in BDSM, part 2 – duct tape. Until then, stay kinky. 😉

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4 thoughts on “Weekly Obsessions, part 6 – Food at Guangzhou, China edition

  1. Whenever I want Chinese food served to me, I go to Dong Bei Hu (aka China Tiger) at Korkeavuorenkatu (I think). They do have the regular shit too, but ask for what the other Chinese are having 😛 I highly recommend the place, especially if you don’t mind spicy food. And what comes to the snake, tasted like chicken cooked in a fish broth. Just a novelty dish really. 😛

    Like

  2. I am a fan of all different types of cuisine, but I have not yet tried Cantonese food. I will have to look to see if there are any restaurants near me since I live close to a very culturally diverse city.
    There is a restaurant in America (not sure if it is in other countries) called The Melting Pot that is quite similar to what you describe as the hot pot. It is advertised as a fondu place, but you cook your meat & vegetables in an oil or broth at your table as you’ve described for the main course. This is my favorite place to eat & usually since it’s so expensive is reserved for special occasions.
    Wonderful post.. thanks for the inspiration!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think Cantonese cuisine is not as well-known as cuisines from Sichuan and Shanghai, cos the main thing about Cantonese cuisine is the fresh ingredients that are most usually not available, at least not in the cold North European countries. US though, where there are tons of Chinese, you might find proper Cantonese cuisine. 😀 Happy hunting!

      Liked by 1 person

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