There’s so much more to eating well than Michelin stars and white tablecloths, and sometimes a fancy tasting menu is the last thing we’d want to eat. Fortunately, it looks like we’re not the only ones craving simpler food. As the city’s penchant for quick and cheap meals that are big on flavour continues to grow, we’re highlighting three new street food-inspired menus that will power you through the workday without breaking your wallet.
The ‘God of Cookery’ at Chop Chop
Master chef Dai Lung, the star of God of Cookery, returns to his Hong Kong siu mei (Canto-style roasted meats) shop, Chop Chop, this month to unleash four new dishes to rival his popular roasted pork belly char siu rice. With recipes honed over the years, the dishes pay homage to classic Cantonese cooking traditions while drawing from fresh, local produce. Claypot chicken (HK$98) is a comforting one-pot meal, infused with the same depth of flavour as his takeaway siu mei boxes, sizzling in a piping hot claypot with plenty of fragrant garlic and basil. Signature sweet and sour pork (HK$95) is succulent and flash-fried in a light, quick batter to preserve the tenderness of the meat. The dish pops with jewels of fresh pineapple and soft green peppers. Finally, wok-fried beef cubes (HK$90) are tossed with macadamia nuts on a searing high heat to achieve the elusive wok hei aroma of piping hot stir-fries, with the juicy cubes of beef caramelised in a sweet bbq sauce. All set meals come with steamed rice, soup and a drink.
Chop Chop, Shop 3, G/F, 18 Wang On Road, Fortress Hill, Hong Kong, +852 3618 7718
Rollin’ with Pololi
Purists might call cream cheese and imitation crab-stuffed sushi rolls sacrilegious, but that’s not stopping Pololi — Hong Kong’s foremost purveyor of Hawaiian poké bowls. After expanding their menu to include Hawaiian BBQ last year, their latest line introduces a range of American-style sushi rolls to perk up your weekdays. Highlighting the same pantry of condiments and fresh, marinated raw fish, the new Shaka Rolls embrace the style of sushi rooted on American shores, from California Rolls stuffed with mayo crab to vibrant Rainbow Rolls topped with a spectrum of jewel-coloured fish.
Available in regular Shaka and snack-sized Lil’ Shaka portions, the sushi rolls offer another high-protein, grab ‘n’ go option to get urbanites through the work day. Try the Dragon Bomb Roll (HK$88) with shrimp tempura and unagi in a spicy tobiko mayo; or the Crazy Philly Roll (HK$108) with the time-tested pairing of salmon and cream cheese. The Dynamite Roll (HK$98) derives its name from a mouthwatering combination of spicy tuna and crunchy tempura. Lil’ Shaka Rolls are primed for an afternoon snack, from the Negi Toro (HK$68) with tuna and spicy mayo; to Spicy Salmon (HK$68) and basic Avocado Rolls (HK$38), a Japanese-style analogue to the ubiquitous avo-toast. Of course it wouldn’t be Pololi without an option for DIY — you can build your own rolls from over 25 ingredients, mixing and matching proteins, fillings and sauces; as well as substitute brown rice or salad for a keto-friendly option.
Available now at the Deliveroo Food Market in Sai Ying Pun, launching soon at outlets including Pololi Central, 35-39 Graham Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2755 8099
Fish ball ramen at Ippudo
A blast of umami from dried fish is the key ingredient in a new ramen bowl available at Ippudo this summer — the popular ramen chain known best for its tonkotsu variety in addition to a selection of creative seasonal offerings. New on the menu, the Niboshi Ramen (originated in the Tsugaru region of Japan) amps up the flavour with a broth that smacks with the earthy richness and umami of dried fish, both infused into the stock and crafted into a “dried fish ball” which crowns the bowl and melts slowly for maximum flavour. The invigorating broth of pork and dried fish bobs with a bounty of ingredients, from bamboo to veggies and a soft-boiled egg, with succulent, slow-cooked slices of char siu rounding off the decadent affair. Topped off with a generous portion of Ippudo’s extra springy handcrafted noodles — this seasonal bowl might be just the ticket to ramen bliss this summer. A bowl of Niboshi Ramen will set you back HK$82 and is available from now through 9 July.
Ippudo, multiple locations including Shop 1403, 14/F, Hysan Place, 500 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, +852 2892 2387