As I discovered during my time in Macau, there’s more than your usual Chinese food. The cuisine is varied and for people like me whose taste buds do most of the traveling, there are lots to discover.
Porkchop in a bun
While in Portugal, I never got to try those hefty sandwhiches filled with fried fillets of fish. I was always too full with the main meals and sweets to have room for any snacking. Apparently, these sandwiches made their way to the Macau but instead of fish, it had pork chop (which I think made it even better). Locally called zhu pa pao, a thick slice of fried chop is placed in a soft bun and they’re found everywhere. The internet recommended Sei Kee in Taipa.
The long lines were justified. The meat was thick and tasty and the bun crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Sei Kee is also famous for its clay-brewed coffee which is really good.
Porkchop with Tomato Sauce
Our go to place for something quick, cheap, and uncomplicated was this eatery along the main road that led to Senado Square. There was an English menu and the portions were hefty. I had this boneless pork chop with tomato sauce on rice. It tasted quirky but good nevertheless.
What’s a trip to a Chinese city without some good dimsum?
Though there are many nice restaurants with good dimsum, they can cost quite a bit. The ones above were at 25-38 pataca. Cheaper are the ones in a large eatery we stumbled on one morning. Dimsum was just at 15 pataca. The staff are glad to open the bamboo steamers so you can point out what you want.
Rice and Noodles
There’s more to fried rice than yang chow. Lei Hong Kei’s version was meaty and had none of the oiliness that one normally gets in Manila’s Chinese restos.
We also had the rice with roasted pork and poached egg.
There’s also fried rice with dried scallops which I had at a nice resto near our hotel. Sorry, I forgot to take a picture.
One night, I was hankering for some good old roast pork and we stumbled on this small joint. It was cheap and good.
But the best one was at Lei Hong Kei. The pork was tender and had the right saltiness. This restaurant is one of the few that still serves old Cantonese cuisine. Judging by the number of families at the large round tables, it’s internet reputation seems justified. Indeed, the yang chow and the sweet and sour pork hit all the right points.
While having soup for dessert might sound strange, it is not so in Asian cuisine. I’m particularly fond of black sesame soup with its smoky flavor. Best eaten hot. Had this bowl at Tim Heong Yuen just across Lei Hong Kei.
While it can be quite initimidating to go in one of the many eateries with no English signs, throwing your cares away and just trying your luck in ordering can be deeply satistifying.
We simply chose any place we fancied, went in, and hoped for an English menu. Oftentimes, someone would notice us peering inside and would beckon us to come in. We were never disappointed. Service was always friendly and in the absence of any English menu, we simply pointed to pictures or to the dimsum on display. Smiles and hand gestures go a long long way.