Hunan cuisine is known to be spicy, similar to Szechuan cuisine. So if you are up for some spicy, flavorful Chinese food in Hong Kong, then visit Hunan Garden. There are also entrees that are not spicy, so you don't need to worry in case you or your companions are not up for hot and spicy food.
For starters, we were served with two appetizers. I didn't know they would charge us, thinking that it would be like Korean restaurants that give appetizers for free. There were two appetizers: tofu with nuts and sliced chili pepper in oil. The first is mild and the second is obviously hot. Perfect combination. I dipped the tofu in the chili dish to put some sting into it and it worked well.
Before the main dishes came out, we had an order of Shanghai style minced pork dumplings with superior soup or siao lum bao as how they are called. They are steamed dumplings with soup inside. The dumplings were tasty but they almost dried up. There was hardly any soup to sip.
We ordered deep fried prawns in minced salted egg yolk and braised pork in chili. The prawns were dipped in a batter mixture that included salted egg yolk and perfectly fried to make it golden brown and crispy. It had the right amount of saltiness that you could taste the salted egg yolk as the batter melts in your mouth.
The big prawns were cooked just right to make them crunchy. As for the braised pork, it was a let down a bit. The menu placed a chili pepper symbol to warn diners that it is spicy. When it was served, I saw some five chili pepper in the dish but could hardly taste them at all. In my chili scale, I'd put it at 0 (not spicy at all).
For dessert, we took an order of pan-fried taro pancakes and it was delicious. Mashed taro was placed at the center of the pancake that was topped with minced peanuts. A perfect way to cap a delicious lunch.
Looking back, I should have ordered my favorite Hunan food---steamed fish head in chili sauce. Oh well, I will just head to the Hunan restaurant here in Manila and get my dose of chili-flavored dishes.
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