Thursday, January 28, 2016

Seafood Annual Dinner

Seafood dinner is many Hong Kong people's favourite.  9 out of 10 Hong Kong Cantonese love it, including myself.  As Chinese New Year is approaching, our family decided to go for a seafood annual dinner.  Normally we pick from set menus, but we're tired of them, so this year, we go for a la carte and pick our own favourite seafood. 

Many travel tips advise visitors to go to Aberdeen, Le Yue Mun, Lamma Island...kind of places to eat seafood, but these places are generally far from city, and prices are more or less similar.  There are many seafood restaurant around in the city with fish tanks.  These are the place you can eat fresh seafood.  The one we went for annual dinner was one of those.

Here's our 8-course a la carte seafood dinner.

To start with, we didn't have seafood, we had the Almond Soup with Pig's Lung.  Quite a new combination, I don't know when chefs started to get almond juice into pig's lung soup.  But indeed, very nice.  Each of us had 3 bowls of soup, as well as a big dish of soup ingredients, including pork, ham, chicken feet...and so on.  In fact this is one of the restaurant's signature dishes.

 Almond Soup with Pig's Lung 生磨杏汁猪肺湯

Our first round of seafood started with Pan Fried Tiger Prawns with soy sauce.  Nice color and although on a Chinese dining table, we were served with forks and knives for this dish.

Pan Fried Tiger Prawns 煎老虎蝦

This dish of steamed Razor Clams let us down.  Although it looked nice, but it was cool to cold.  The low temperature critically discounted the taste!

Steamed Razor Clams with Jelly Noodle and Garlic
We were given a private plate for our razor clams.  So the time the waiter took to distribute the plate let the food cool down, I believe, or else it might have been sitting in the kitchen for an hour before some brought them to our table.


American Barrel Oyster, in traditional Cantonese hot pot with ginger and green onion.  Very fragrant and delicious.

Oyster Stew with Ginger and Green Onion 薑沖焗美國桶蠔

This giant garoupa was the second disaster of the night. At the beginning we were very excited about this giant fish.  But because of the thick meat, the fish came to the table not fully cooked.  Some of the fleshes were still sticking to the bone.  If we asked to re-cook, then the whole fish will be destroyed.  So the waiter suggested us to eat those cooked parts and then get the chef to add some hot oil to cook the rest.  We had no choice.  But don't know why, while we ate, the meat gradually got cooked and we finally manage to eat the entire fish without re-cooking.  Even so, we were not happy with it.

Steamed Giant Garoupa 清蒸沙巴龍躉

Eggs with Prawns is generally not served in banquets, but why here?  Remember we tailored our own menu?  My original choice was deep fried mini white fishes or kau fishes, but restaurant said they did stock those fishes.  So we end up with this egg with prawns, still we have prawns to match our seafood theme.

Stir Fried Prawns with Eggs 滑蛋蝦仁

As a balance of diet, we must need some vegetables.  To match the seafood theme, our original choice was crab roe with bean sprout.  But restaurant said crab season is over, they had no crab roe available, so we changed to crab meat, still something from the sea.

Stir Fried Bean Sprout with Crab Meat 蟹肉豆苗

Cantonese banquets usually are wrapped up with rice, noodle to make sure guests all go home with a full stomach.  Because ours was a seafood dinner, we picked another signature dish of the restaurant - fish meat congee. Pinspotted Spinefoot Fish?? Excuse me, I really don't know the English name of 泥鯭 fish, so I looked it up in the internet.
Pinspotted Spinefoot Fish Meat Congee 果皮泥鯭粥

We got some dates pudding and fresh fruits at the end.  Comparing the normal menus with roast pig and chicken, our seafood dinner menu was relatively light and was just right. 

Kam Dou Kee Restaurant
Wanchai, Hong Kong

Private Room for Two Tables
HK$3,888 per table of 10, plus tea and service charge
Total: HK$4,430 (US$568) per table

Hong Kong Food Blog - Seafood Annual Dinner

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Seafood Dinner Special Price

I've mentioned in my blog that if you want to eat good things at good price, you can play around with date and time. Here's a good example.  The seafood dinner set below costs HK$398 per person Friday to Sunday.  However if you go on Monday through Thursday, it is sold at HK$198 per person.  Fair enough?

Sunday (Jan 17) is my friend's birthday.  She decided to have an early celebration in order to enjoy the special rate.  So we had it on Thursday (Jan 14).

The seafood set was served somewhat western style. i.e. Individual dishes were served to each person.  So we all ate our own dishes.  It was an eight course dinner, and on top we ordered the Chinese birthday buns.  Here's what we had.

Abalone with Mushroom - Al dente!  Ate with knife and fork.  Abalone is generally expensive.  In some cases, only the abalone will cost more than the entire set.  

Pan Fried King Prawn煎老虎蝦 
King Prawn is our favourite.  In the market there are always expensive prawns but not fresh enough.  But this one is very fresh and we all love it.

Soft Shell Crab 炸軟殼蟹

I usually don't eat crabs, because I don't know and don't want to struggle with the hard shell.  But this one is different - soft shell crab.  Something new to me, deep fried, a little spicy.  Well done!

Pan Fried Corn Fish Cake 粟米魚餅

In fact, this corn fish cake was the starter.  Crispy!

Veggie in Congee 粥水油麥菜

This is kind of new combination being invented recently.  Vegetables usually go with soup, but current trend is to go with congee.  We can even find some rice in it.  May be its consistency is slightly thicker than soup, hence creating a new feeling in the mouth.

Signature Fried Rice 招牌炒飯
Each of us had a little bowl of fried rice.  It was called signature fried rice, having egg white, vegetables and some minced meat in it.  Quite healthy.  Nice!

Old Fire Soup 老火湯, 粉葛陵魚

Cantonese is famous for Old Fire Soup.  Let me clarify.  'Old Fire' implies long hour cooking in Cantonese kitchens.  Verses 'quick boil', the soup is believed to be good for health and rich in flavour.  

Sweet Potato Soup 蕃薯糖水

The sweet potato was cooked to totally soft.  Together with some ginger juice in it, this dessert is very good to keep warm in cold weather.  And it is easy for home cooking.  Sometimes we make it at home too.

Birthday Bun 生日桃包

We paid this on top of the dinner set.  I thought it was HK$15 each.  Freshly steamed.  With some slight brush on, making the colour look good for the birthday person.  Very yummy!

Kam Dou Restaurant
Hong Kong
January 14, 2016 (Thursday)
HK$198 per person + tea and 10% service charge

Hong Kong Food Blog
Seafood Dinner Special