1) Steamed Tofu w/ Scallion Garlic Soy Sauce
2) Steamed Salmon Steak
The incarnation of this classic dim sum plate stemmed from the unexpected acquisition of lap cheong (臘腸), otherwise known as preserved Chinese sausage. The description read fiery, thus the vacuum-sealed package had originally been reserved for chorizo-like usages, likely to be consumed alongside tortillas from St. Jacobs.
I set out to craft the buns one chilly morning, combining the yeasty foundation of one source with the method of another. The dough was, surprisingly, easy to work with, requiring little to no dusting of flour and elongating in the desired worm-like shape.
I'll also admit to the exaggerated - and glaringly obvious - meat-to-bun ratio. Though, with both sausages being of relatively mild nature (it wasn't spicy after all!), this mattered less on an overall tasting note.
A splendid example where the resulting yield is greater than the sum of its parts: plain popcorn, caramel from Chelsea Chocolates (stored chilled for upwards of three years), and a sprinkle of flaky salt.
Crafted with Lindt's Surfin instead of Callebaut (for the sake of reducing breakout probability), the soft squares were unintentionally vegan, yet sufficient in addressing chocolate cravings with highly flexible ingredients (read: non-perishable).
In an attempt to craft a naturally red dough in anticipation of the upcoming CNY, I incorporated two teaspoons of my forgotten beetroot-turmeric mix into SK's trusty 22-hour dough.
However, the results proved dismal. Risen to its final form, the yeasty mix bore a lumpy, speckled surface, rippled with faded coral and dusty tan. It was sticky - far stickier than normal, yet dry at the same time. Stretching the dough was oddly difficult, as holes began emerge between relatively relaxed gluten strands.
To draw out excess moisture, I sneaked one round onto the bottom rack while the second was nearing doneness. Despite being thin and crunchy whilst warm, the extensive cooking time grew apparent post-cooling, exposing a tooth-quivering chomp.
Straightforward and delicious in theory - as HK-Style Café menus often are - disorder ensued at the dreadful sight of a single remaining can of creamed corn. As my diced pork was marinating in its soy-white pepper-sesame oil-fish sauce bath, I set out to construct the required amount of cream corn using a tin of Peaches & Cream, salted butter, and milk.
Alas, my responsibilities were accomplished quickly, enabling the undertaking of personal favours that had somehow all descended within the same five-day period.
In an attempt to reverse the Quarantine Fifteen, snack packs were obtained for the controlled indulgence of Oreos - mini, of course - and cocoa Minions.
Rather than devote an afternoon to pan-frying and possibly sacrilegious fruition, I opted to make the drive to Koreatown, where satisfaction was guaranteed. Work would take place in the evening hours instead; hoddeok was non-negotiable.
We also took the opportunity to secure mid-afternoon java. From Rustle & Still, the neighbourhood favourite that thankfully remains in operation, a duo of Vietnamese Coffee was obtained. The Iced variation was rich, velvety, and unmistakably potent, while a tad heavy on the ice for a chilly winter day. Cut with a splash of steamed milk, the Hot variation comprised of an entirely dissimilar profile: soothing and naturally sweet with the signature robustness of Vietnamese coffee.
"Give everyone a voice
But leash 'em wit the mic cord"
Acceptance Speech (수상소감)
"What doesn't kill me can only make me bleed"
End of the World
"It's gonna be okay
But that's a lie
이 세상은 지옥행"
"...paved the way
For everyone that is pavin' the way" [Rosario]