Wednesday, August 28, 2013

80th Birthday Banquet

It was my aunt's 80th birthday yesterday.  She's my mother's younger sister, so everyone from our family were invited to a banquet.  Here's a record of the feast.  I rarely eat big meals.  Last night I was overloaded that I have to fast today.  But the food was so yummy, I just couldn't resist.

It was a typical traditional Cantonese feast - 8 main courses plus fried rice, dim sum and dessert.  And as we were celebrating birthday, the giant birthday buns were imperative.

Roast Piglet 鴻運乳豬全體
This is always my favourite.  Crunchy skin and juicy meat.  Wonderful!
Lobster with Noodle 高湯焗龍蝦伊面底
The waiters were really slow in serving the moist tissues and cracking tools.  We ended up making our fingers messy.  Frankly I'm not skillful in eating losber with shells.  I would prefer to eat meat only.  But serving with shells make the dish look very colorful and beautiful.
Giant Scallops with Sea Cucumber 京燒刺參玉帶
Al dente giant scallops.  Very fresh and colorful.  Well done!
Crab Meat Vegetable with Fish Roe 玉影翠珊瑚
Healthy dish - white meat (crab) with green vegetable.  Silky smooth and delicious.
Shark Fin Soup 紅燒海皇鮑翅
The shark fin is served with lots of seafood such as crab meat, shrimps and scallops, very delicious.  It is a Cantonese tradition that the host will toast while serving shark fin.  My aunt did the same.  And at the same time, she gave each of us a red pocket of HK$100.
East Star Garoupa 清蒸海東星班
For professional eaters, there are few ways to define a good garoupa.  First it has to be an ocean fish, ie. catch from the ocean, not from fish tanks; Second it has to be the 'star' class of garoupa; Third it has to be fetched from the east, as east garoupa is far more expensive than the wests.  Well, this fish fullfils all the good garoupa criteria.  The chef also steamed it professionally and timing was just right.  A really good fish! My brother even ate the fish head.
Abalone with Duck Web 南非鮑魚扣玉掌
Few menu serve whole abalone.  This is quite an expensive dish.  I like eating duck webs but don't like to deal with bones as it hurts my tongue easily.

Deep Fried Chicken  譽宴一品燒鷄
Again, this is always my favourite!!
Signature Fried Rice 招牌炒飯
I don't see why this can be the restaurant's signature fried rice.  Apart from its pale look, it was actually quite tasteless.  My bowl has only a few green peas and mini shrimps.  My sister had some tiny minute bits of suscpected scallops in her bowl. I like fried rice generally, but I really didn't appreciate this one.

Juicy Buns 譽宴小籠包

Juicy and delicious.  But I beleive the shapes and sizes of the buns could be improved.
Birthday Buns 桃包
I'm absolutely happy with these birthday buns.   I love its giant size and just out from the steamer, very hot, fresh and yummy!

Inside the Birthday Bun 全蛋王桃包
My aunt said it was her special request that each of the buns should contain a whole salty egg yolk.  Well, the restaurant did it!
Dessert - Red Bean Syrup (didn't take photo)
Dinner date:  August 26, 2013
Restaurant: U-Banquet, 5/F Lee Theatre Plaza, Causeway Bay
Standard gift: HK$500
I think the standard gift I pay for this meal was of good return. The host didn't make money.  A similar function I attended last month was so horrible.  The host was making a lot of money but receiving $500 from each of us and gave us a meal of $3,388.  There was a net profit of  $2,612 per table.

But this time my aunt treat us quite well.  The meal was generally good though service and environment could be improved.  This time the banquet costs HK$4,980 per table.  Suppose each of us pay $500, but my aunt gave each of us a laisee (red pocket) of $100, the balance sheet is just break even. 

If you ask 'how do you know the cost of the meal'?  Well, becasue the host simply pick some standard menu and the leaflets were available everywhere in the restaurant.  If they design their own menu, then we can only guess the cost.

Hong Kong Food Blog - 80th Birthday Banquet

Message to Shark Fans
Please DO NOT post comments about your shark protection / protest message. I will NOT publish them. If you want to protect sharks, here are my suggested methods:
  1. Advertise in mass media
  2. Everyday protests, demonstrations…in front of all shops selling shark fins
  3. Everyday protests, demonstrations in public areas such as streets, parks to educate the public not to eat shark fin
  4. Letter, fax, email, telephone or personal visits to restaurant owners to insist them to remove shark fin from their menu
  5. Write to the government to request shark fin eating to be illegal
  6. Hire fleet of ships to go out to the sea to stop any shark catching activities.
Leaving comments in my blog is a matter of wasting my time to read and delete. It is in no sense contributive in saving sharks.

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