Thursday, April 10, 2014

Hong Kong: Hotel Breakfast

Because there were a lot of interesting things to eat around the area where my hotel was located, I had been tempted to forego the free breakfast included in my hotel package. But I inspected the spread on my first morning, and found it equally interesting so I had breakfast there. And I got hooked that I ate breakfast there for all the days of my stay in Hong Kong. 

It had the usual hotel breakfast features, but it had distinct Chinese accents. I always started with a plate of fresh fruits - there was  my favorite Hami melon, and bananas probably from Davao down south in my home country, sweet pineapples, and braised plums redolent of masala. 
Then there was congee, the bland Chinese rice porridge that was a perfect canvass for the contrasting textures and flavors of the various toppings on offer - fried salted peanuts, pickled vegetables, meat floss, fried wonton wrappers. The excellent chili paste did wonders in spicing things several levels up.   

The congee metal container sat on a warmer side by side with another container filled with warm and sweet soy milk. All around them were bowls and saucers, but no single mug or cup was visible. This perplexed me, for naturally I wanted to drink the soy milk from a cup. 
So I again consulted my Chinese classmate, who gave me the heads up on Tim Ho Wan, and it was explained to me that yes, soy milk was drunk from a bowl. But here's another interesting thing - he further explained that congee and soy milk were usually eaten together for breakfast.  

So from then on I had congee and soy milk together, and yes, I had them both from bowls. 
There was always pancit, or stir-fried noodles, in one form or another. I  noticed mainly Chinese males eating them. I am a noodle-lover, always was, but the noodles didn't appeal to me much - mainly because I was so used to the Philippine version that feature a heap of various toppings from meats to balls to vegetables and even deli meats, that I thought I didn't know how to eat this kind of noodles. For it was just stir-fried noodles, and not much else. 
Not wanting to miss an opportunity to learn, I ate the pancit, of course. I tried all there was to try, every single morning. There was bihon - thin stick noodles - one day, and there was a thicker glass noodles another day. They came slick with sesame oil and soy sauce, but every single day they came unadorned. 

There was always dim sum - which couldn't compare with the ones I had at Tim Ho Wan or Lin Heung Kui - so I mixed them in with the noodles. Sometimes I got fried chicken or fish fillet or deli meats to mix in, too. Maybe this was how noodles was made to be, to be a side for viands, while pancit  in the Philippines evolved to become a one-pot dish. 

Related Posts
Eating Around Sheung Wan
Strolling Around Sheung Wan
Sheung Wan Dried Seafood Market 
Lin Heung Kui
Yung Kee
Tim Ho Wan
Cliftons Event Catering

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