Need to introduce a new category. Food consumed in a shopping center food court doesn’t fit in either of my previous categories of “dining out” nor “street food”, so now we have “Take out food”.
We went to Aberdeen Shopping Center in Richmond to eat in the food court. This is a bit of an oddity, in the sense that most shopping centers, we consider the food court an afterthought. We’re there to shop, and maybe we’ll go get something to eat in the food court. Here, we go to Aberdeen FOR the food court, and shopping is a secondary consideration.
There are quite a few good merchants here, today we chose Leung Kee cantonese food. This place specializes in simple home-style comfort food, but does it well, and cheap, and with generous portions. The food is made-to-order.
Between the three of us we ordered a plate of dry style stir fried rice noodles with beef, and chicken with chinese sausage over rice.
The noodles with beef are quite nicely done, using fresh rice noodles, bean sprouts and julienned onions for aroma, and stir fried with soy for savoriness. There’s really not a lot of beef in there. This is really a dish about the noodles, and the rest is there to accent the noodles (in the same sense that italian pasta dishes are supposed to be about pasta, with the rest as a flavour accent).
There’s a pretty good “wok hei” aroma coming from this (it’s that distinctive aroma that comes from stir frying in a really hot wok. It’s a difficult effect to achieve in a home kitchen). There was a lot of noodles in this dish, we couldn’t finish it all, and took home about a third of it to eat later.
The chicken & rice dish comes with just enough vegetables (gai lan) to give the dish some much-needed colour, if not much nutritional benefit :-).
This dish comes with generous portions of tenderized marinade chicken, steamed to doneness and topped with a sliver of chinese sausage, a few stalks of gai lan, and splashed with a little soy for added saltiness. The chicken is marinated with ginger, sugar and cooking wine.
Theres a little bit of sweetness from the marinade, saltiness from the soy, and a little bit of both from the chinese sausage.
Leung Kee is a good place to go for cheap simple comfort food done well. But it tends to be one of the busier merchants in this food court, and everything is made-to-order so expect to wait about 10-15 minutes to get your food.
If I have to find something to complain about (and Leung Kee is far from being the only chinese merchant guilty of this), is the overuse of signage. It’s common for many chinese merchants to fill their windows with so much excess signage that you could spend an hour reading through all the “specials” of the day.