壹週刊 封面故事: 日食大恐慌

April 13, 2011

Is it this bad in Hong Kong? Please share your comments/feedback.

For the record.

封面故事 – 日食大恐慌 – 2011年04月07日

日本,原是追求「安全食品」的樂土,在核洩的一刻,日食頓然由天堂跌入地獄;岩手縣的鮑魚、新潟的日本米、宮城的士多啤梨及仙台的海產都一一已成過去;令香港人對日本食物產生恐慌,日式料理、日食供應商皆叫苦連天,有些為求自保,慌忙尋找替代品,甚至不惜自揭一直以來並非用日本貨,造成日食訊息大混亂。在核洩仍未解決下,這股日食危機仍揮之不去。
放大圖片

超市以往只會寫產品來自日本,但災後已開始寫明指定的縣市,以解釋產品並非來自災區範圍。(林志謙攝)

位於又一城的超市 TASTE,平日會將日本運到的新鮮蔬果及日本零食放在正門,吸引顧客;現已被韓國蔬果、泰國橙等取代。雖然仍有部分貨架放置了日本生果,但駐足的市民明顯減少,與旁邊韓泰食物相比,更顯得水靜鵝飛。
主打日本貨的一田百貨,為了安撫市民,宣布福島縣三百公里內的日本食品,暫時不會再入貨,加強引入外地及日本南部貨源,如用九州蔬菜,並在價錢牌上列明貨品來自哪個縣市,一田百貨常務董事莊偉忠說:「以往會就咁寫日本士多啤梨、日本番薯,依家會寫明是熊本士多啤梨、鹿兒島番薯。」
不過,仍難以改變市民對日本食物的恐懼,曾是「日食粉絲」的盧先生,坦言對日本食物已起了戒心:「依家一定唔會食日本嘢!就算批發商話來自北海道的食品無事,我都唔會揀,點知運輸時會唔會經過東京!」全職家庭主婦梁太亦言:「啲水流去呢度又流去嗰度,尤其啲海產要小心啲,以前我好鍾意喺超市買特價魚生壽司俾仔女食,依家送俾我都唔食。」 Read the rest of this entry »

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玩死香港人的《芭比的盛宴》Babette’s Feast (1987)

February 17, 2011

蔡瀾私塾 (2011/02/11)
問題:請問你哪幾套關於飲食的電影最值得推介?
答:《芭比的盛宴》(Babette’s Feast (1987)) 為首選,再也拍不出比它更好的飲食電影。李安的《飲食男女》也不錯,其他的,參照我寫的《最愛夢工場》。

我認為很多香港人是不會欣賞或明白《芭比的盛宴》。特別是Babette的”所作所為”。你有看過電影嗎?你認為我說得有理嗎?

有人將《芭比的盛宴》上了YouTube。有part 1part 2part 3,等等,共 11 part。

以下是Part 1

P.S. After you’ve watched the movie, you may want to watch the following insightful New York Times commentary video: Critics’ Picks: ‘Babette’s Feast’

P.P.S. The feast starts at part 8.


Sushi Kai Calgary – All you can taste buffet review

July 16, 2010

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To attract people to its new Kensington area to try its food, Sushi Kai Calgary created an “All you can taste buffet” (note: it is still an “All you can eat buffet“). The food at Sushi Kai’s old Chinatown location were reasonably good so I decided to give the new location’s buffet a try and review them at the same time.

Deep fried shrimp (3/10) & oyster (8/10):

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 1

The batter for the deep fried shrimp wasn’t the fluffy tempura batter I had expected so I was disappointed. But the deep fried oysters used a lighter tempura batter which I liked more and it was quite tasty. Unfortunately, when I ordered some more deep fried oysters later, the chef (or a different chef?) decided to use different batter which I didn’t like at all.

Second batch of deep fried oysters (3/10) (they looked and tasted different from the first batch):

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 13

Sushi (8/10):

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 2

The presentation and taste of the first dish of sushi were pretty good. I particularly like the Mackerel and BBQ Eel (which were warmed up by the chef).

Now, what I can’t understand is why the second batch looked and tasted different? You can’t see it but the BBQ Eel were cold (the chef should have warmed them up like the first batch) and the Mackerel didn’t have the cuts and burn-marks like the first batch (see following photo).

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 11

Consistent presentation and taste of food over different days (let alone on the same night) should be a minimum requirement of any self-respecting restaurant. Most customers won’t go back after a bad food experience at a new restaurant.

Hand cone & Sushi Rolls –

Toro hand cone (7/10), mango paradise (8.5/10):

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 12

Naraku roll (7/10):

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 9

Deep fried shrimp roll (Age sushi) (1/10):

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 8

The novelty factor of the deep fried shrimp roll ended badly after the first bite. Bad job in deep frying the shrimp roll. The Naraku roll was ok, not something I would order again. I enjoyed the Mango Paradise rolls and did order it again and still enjoyed it the second time. Other restaurant uses a thin slice of real mango but I found the mango sauce was an cheaper but still ok substitute. The Toro hand cone was ok, the distribution of the toro was a bit uneven as there were no fish left in the last bite.

Deep fried squid legs (6.5/10)

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 10

The two same sauces are used here. And the chef might have forgot to add a tiny little bit of salt to the dish.

Mixed veg tempura (7/10)

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 7

I’ve had better tempura, they were ok.

Steak & Chicken (1/10 & 3/10)

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 5

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 6

The steak was so tough and chewy, Sushi Kai needs to buy a slightly better cut of beef or prepare them better. The chicken was barely ok as I can cook better chicken than this.

Octopus balls (7/10)

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 3

For someone who likes octopus balls (essentially a ball of starch with a tiny bit of octopus in the middle), it was ok so I leave it as a 7/10. For me, I never like it and this one hasn’t changed my mind.

Grill squid (8/10)

Sushi Kai Calgary review - pix 4

Other than the sauces (more on this later), the grill squid was tasty.

Sauces

Sushi Kai seems to sprinkle the same two sauces on most of their dishes. Why? They should really spend a little bit of time to create appropriate sauces for each dish. There is no point in using the same sauces over and over and over again as it shows a serious lack of love of food.

Presentation & plates

Except the first dish, every other dishes were put on a cheap round glass plate. Why? Food presentation should be pleasing to the eyes and the big round plates do take up way too much space on the table. And have I said they look ugly?!

Final Comments

I want to give this restaurant another chance but given some of the poorly made dishes (simple stuff like beef, chicken) and the inconsistency of the food (the first vs the second batch of sushi), I don’t know if I will give it another chance.

P.S. Website

These days, every restaurant should have a proper website. And failing that, a simple basic site with basic information, including the hours of operation, should be posted. (note the word “Hours” is on the site but without the actual hours of operation).

Home page of SushiKaiCalgary.com


煎魚

February 20, 2010

Quite enjoy a new fish dish my better half makes. Some basic instructions here and here.

Making Fish (Basa) dinner - pix 1/7

Making Fish (Basa) dinner - pix 2/7

Making Fish (Basa) dinner - pix 3/7

Making Fish (Basa) dinner - pix 4/7

Making Fish (Basa) dinner - pix 5/7

(Recipe 1/2) Making Fish (Basa) dinner - pix 6/7

(Recipe 2/2) Making Fish (Basa) dinner - pix 7/7


Happy Chinese New Year of Tiger (Our Lunch & V-Day dinner)

February 14, 2010

祝虎年快樂,身體健康!

Wishing everyone a happy Chinese New Year of Tiger.

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2010 V-Day and Chinese New Year dinner

Banana & blueberry muffin


小籠包的藝術

August 28, 2009

小籠包 is something that I love since I was a little boy. Blogger Yun recently wrote about a meal of which 小籠包 was one of the entrees and that had lead to a few comments and me writing this blog entry.

Other than the color being a bit off, the following 小籠包 look good.

鼎泰豐小籠包 by 班大貓.

鼎泰豐蟹黃小籠包 by Christabelle‧迴紋針.

And this photo says a lot as well.

What I look for in a 小籠包,

  • look good and tasty
  • skin can’t be too thick.
  • juicy inside

I think it is fair to say the 小籠包 chef cheated on the night Yun had hers as I can’t imagine a respectable 小籠包 chef will cheat by putting 小籠包s in a container. Some 灌湯餃 dim sum “chefs” cheat by using a bowl or a container, but at least their excuses were the 餃s are full of 湯. But the juice in the 小籠包s are not that much.

I grew up having my Peking food at Spring Deer and their Peking Ducks are my favourite. Spring Deer doesn’t look fancy (on the outside and inside) but their food are consistent and quite tasty.


我的情人節晚餐 @ 君子雜誌 (Esquire.com) – How Men Eat

August 17, 2009

Home-cooked Valentine's Day Steak Dinner by you.

I am excited to see my “Home-cooked Valentine’s Day Steak Dinner” featured in “How Men Eat” in Esquire.com (see picture #11 or a screen capture here).

When one receive a sweet letter from Esquire.com saying,

“In addition to credit and a link, you’ll get our undying devotion and respect, plus the ability to brag that you’ve got a photo up on Esquire.com and all the attention that comes with it.

It is definitely an offer one can’t refuse! :)

P.S. Special thanks to Ms. E. from Esquire.com for loving my photo and calling it an “incredible image”.