Chinese New Year Pudding Makeover

Mongkok has long been known for its myriad street food joints and affordable eateries featuring almost every major international cuisine. Located at the heart of this food jungle, Ming Court is often seen as a hidden gem on Hong Kong’s dining scene. Prompted by Michelin’s remarks on Ming Court’s “excellent cuisine, worth a detour…”, Asian Palate visited this Michelin two-starred Chinese restaurant.

Overlooking cluttered buildings reminiscent of the 1960s Old Hong Kong , Ming Court on the 6/F of Langham Place Hotel is the culinary playground of Executive chef Tsang Chiu King who has been experimenting with new Canto-European fusion menu ideas since its opening in 2004.

As the Year of the Rabbit draws closer, Tsang is ready to take diners on a detour from the conventional auspicious 8-course dinner. He welcomes adventurous diners to embark on an epicurean adventure where traditional CNY pudding are combined with exotic ingredients to give your palate an exhilarating multi-flavoured and textural experience.

Stir-fried golden pudding with garoupa loin, black beans and garlic

With a close resemblance to the famous Cantonese dish “Sauteed Fresh Clams with Chili & Black Beans”, this dish makes subtle improvements. It is our “Dish of the Day”. The black beans and garlic sauce bringS an umami spike combined with spiciness and saltiness to a meat or seafood-based dish. “The twist in this dish lies in the unexpected clash in the milky sweetness of the golden pudding and the black beans and garlic sauce,” explains Chef Tsang.

Stir-fried golden pudding with diced wagyu beef in chocolate sauce

“The inspiration for this dish is from a popular Western gastronomic trend of serving steak in chocolate sauce years back.” Chef Tsang explains. “This dish, among every other, requires an open-minded palate. Because of its unconventional and stark contrast in flavours and texture, it’s a hate-it-or-love-it dish.” Coated in a sauce of white chocolate and champagne, the Australian diced wagyu beef and lovely cubes of deep-fried golden pudding are served in a deep-fried ring of egg noodles and perillae folium (a dried flavoured leaf often used in Sichuan cuisine) to sign off this gastronomic experiment. We thought this innovative dish worked surprisingly well, especially for those with a sweet tooth.

Baked Shanghainese pudding with pumpkin, cheese and black truffle

Traditionally, Shanghainese pudding has little flavour so Chef Tsang chooses to orchestrate this dish with an Italian touch by using lavish amounts of cheese and pumpkin. A dash of black truffle imported from France caps off this new hybrid of Canto-European fusion perfectly.

Stir-fried turnip pudding with sliced prawn and marinated termite mushrooms

“I came across termite mushrooms during my trip to Yunnan. They are in season from July to September each year. Yunnan locals prefer preserving them in spice marinade since these mushrooms decay shortly within a week after they are picked.” Termite mushrooms gives a pungent kick to the turnip pudding whilst sliced prawn rounds off the textural profile with a “bounce” to the bite.

With a full stomach, AP asks Chef Tsang about his 2011 mission. With unabashed determination he confides to AP, “Ming Court is ready to take on the 3-star challenge and revolutionizes the common impression that Mongkok is only a detour destination on HK’s fine dining map.” We urge you to try it for yourself!