Richmond – Pacific East Mall - Hong Kong Snack House – Green waffles and fish balls
- rworange May 10, 2008 06:35 PM
… And they were washed down with fresh sugar cane juice … breakfast of Champions.
A discussion about eggettes in another thread finally got to me so I trotted over to Hong Kong Snack House today (HKSH).
This was a first taste of fresh sugar cane juice. Surprisingly it wasn’t sweet or like drinking sugar water or a simple syrup. It was pleasant but didn’t seem to have a strong flavor, almost like a mild iced tea. It didn’t come in a mug, but it was the color of this picture
HKSH also sells ‘real red bean juice’, a bright fresh carrot juice, fresh strawberry juice and a few others. Aloe vera can be added to any juice.
HONG KONG STYLE EGG PUFFS ($3.50): These soft, sweet waffles are bubble shaped. There are other flavors for an extra 25 cents: pandam leaf coconut sesame, chocolate, strawberry, red bean. Add sugar, peanut butter, chocolate or condensed milk for an extra fifty cents. Here’s a picture and article from Chow
PANDAM LEAF COCONUT SESAME HONG KONG STYLE EGG WAFFLE ($1.50): I’m not sure what a pandam leaf is. While it didn’t give any particular flavor it turned the waffle a pretty shamrock green. No sesame taste. These tasted like coconut-flavored egg puffs. Nice pieces of fresh shredded coconut were in it. IMO, the better deal is getting the waffle since they use the same batter as the egg puff … unless the fun egg shape is worth an extra $2 to you.
FISH BALLS ($1.25): These were quite popular. Almost everyone ordered them … and usually 5 – 20 orders at a time … so why not. Five hot brownish balls are served on a bamboo skewer. They ask if you want hot sauce which means they squirt on sriracha and some other brown sauce Hmmm. This wiki article about them says fish ball carts are like hot dog carts in the US … and actually that’s kind of a good description as they had a spongy hot dog type of texture ... or perhaps texture-wise one could consider them fish Spam. There is a strong fish taste ... spongy, fishy, brown balls = aquired taste ... tho for some reason I now have a craving. The other two links are what they look like.
This is indeed the vendor that was once in J&S Coffee & Tea House across from 168 Restaurant. Now he has his own shop open seven days a week with an expanded menu which I’ll list in the first reply.
There are three small tables with 6 seats total. I thought they were very nice and helpful. Waffles, etc are made to order so depending on how busy it is it can take a while. There are two egg puff irons, two waffle irons and one crepe maker.
Hong Kong Snack House
3288 Pierce St, Richmond, CA
Other menu items
There are six types of bahn mi with one option being vegetarian.
Fresh fruit crepes are $4.95 - $6.95. Crepes include
- Nutella, chocolate & ice cream
- Banana and ice cream
- Red bean and ice cream
- Strawberry and ice cream
- Green tea ice cream and whipped cream
- Mango and ice cream
- Mixed fruit (strawberry, banana, kiwi) and ice cream
Other snacks … all fried:
- Gu ling gao (???)
- Hong Kong style rice roll
- Butterfly shrimp
- Banana samosa (5 fried samosa to an order with ice cream, 10 without)
- Egg roll
- Shao mai
- Crab roll
- Lobster ball
- Fish egg cuttle fish ball
There were also about eight flavors of ice cream.
There were lots of packaged Vietnamese snacks on the counter like spring rolls or those colorful jello-type cups.
Pandan (screwpine) has a very distinctive flavor and aroma. The only aroma I can think of that's similar is jasmine rice, but pandan is much stronger. If you couldn't taste it, they probably didn't use much, if any.
Almost posted this in that other thread (http://www.chowhound.com/topics/400138), but decided to keep it with the correct restaurant...
Stopped in Friday in need of a quick dinner. Saw the evil squid still on the menu, but ignored it with extreme prejudice.
Instead, I opted to try the bahn mi. I got three: bbq chicken, bbq pork, and the "combination", which, if memory serves had three different pig parts.
All three had significantly more meat in them than what I've seen elsewhere; as a result, I was only able to eat the chicken and combo. I saved the pork and had it for lunch today.
The rolls weren't so much toasted as heated in the oven (sliced, but as far as I could tell, not fanned open). Not a major flaw; I'll take a warm roll over a crunchy-to-the-point-of-mouth-damage roll any day.
As noted, they all had more meat than I'm used to. In my opinion, that sort of imbalances the meat/vegetable ratio. It was more noticeable with the chicken and pork, as those are kind of chunky. The combo used flatter meat, so the vegetables sat more on top of the meat, rather than next to it, giving a better flavor balance.
The chicken, I thought, had the best flavor; the pork and various pig bits in the combo weren't as intensely flavored as I would like.
If I had to pick one of the three for future visits, though, I'd stick with the combo, as the better meat/veggie balance outweighed the flavor of the chicken for me.
I'll still stick with Ba Le in that part of the world, or Bamboo Chopstick if I'm at home.