Traditional HK claypot delights at Feng Shui Inn this August & September

Known for its authentic Cantonese cuisine, Feng Shui Inn is pulling all stops to bring you a special claypot menu this August and September. This menu by Chef Li Kwok Kwong comprises 18 traditional claypot dishes that draw on popular cooking techniques from 1960s and 1970s Hong Kong, and will be available from 1 August to 30 September 2017.

In this article, we review four of the menu’s highlight dishes that promise to take you on a culinary journey back to the good ol’ times of Hong Kong past.

Tiger Prawns with Glass Vermicelli and Lemon Grass (S$38)

The fresh, succulent tiger prawns add a grilled seafood taste to the XO sauce-braised glass vermicelli bursting with bold umami flavours at every bite. Although full-flavoured, this dish doesn’t get overwhelming, thanks to the occasional whole peppercorn you’ll find between strands of glass vermicelli and strips of lemon grass.

I was initially apprehensive of this dish because I don’t usually enjoy the taste of lemon grass, but those who are like me needn’t worry. The lemon grass flavour in the dish is slight and provides a surprisingly welcome balance to the rich sauce.

Braised Chicken and Pork Liver in Chinese Wine (S$28)
Braised Chicken and Pork Liver in Chinese Wine

With tender pieces of chicken and the fragrance of sesame oil, this dish undoubtedly rings with nostalgia. What sets it apart is that the pork liver slices are plump and bouncy, not dry like how pork liver usually ends up in most dishes. Rest assured, the taste of the Chinese wine is subtle and in no way overpowering.

Beancurd with Roast Pork and Chives (S$30)
Beancurd with Roast Pork and Chives

Handmade silken beancurd cubes are first fried, then braised together with an abundance of chives and strips of three-layered pork that isn’t too fatty, resulting in a slightly oily but extremely satisfying dish. Shrimp paste – a typical Cantonese ingredient – is used as a sauce base to elevate the meaty sweetness of the pork, creating an addictive flavour that is at once balanced yet complex.

Though understated, the chives are – to me at least – the dish’s main attraction because they have a strong wok hei (‘breath of the wok’) and an onion-like aroma that cuts through the rich savoury sauce in perfect harmony.

Braised Oxtail with Carrot and Chinese Herbs (S$38)
Braised Oxtail with Carrot and Chinese Herbs

This dish boasts tender chunks of oxtail meat that breaks easily off the bone, accompanied by fat and cartilage that melt in your mouth. The carrots are braised till they are extremely soft and have soaked up the flavour of the thickened gravy prepared using black bean sauce, dang gui (‘female ginseng’) and star anise.

Although slightly on the salty side, it goes great with a bowl of rice – or two, because you just can’t get enough of this hearty dish that was ubiquitous in Hong Kong back in the 1960’s and remains well-liked to this day.

Take a trip down memory lane

If this has got your palette enticed, do not tarry. The special claypot menu at Feng Shui Inn will only be available till 30 September 2017.

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