So, one of the highlight of this short trip was our little adventure to the Lei Yue Mun Seafood Village/Bazaar/Market at Kowloon. I will explain the draw of this little gem over two posts. This first post is devoted to the fishmonger/dining portion of the village.
So, upon entering the “gate” of the Seafood Village, just imagine stalls after stalls of the freshest seafood you’ve ever seen (everything is all ALIVE and swimming/breathing/wriggling in tanks all over the place) crammed into small areas and tiny walkways… Along the walkways, there are restaurants (small to medium sized) strewn all throughout… and that’s basically what we saw.
Now, we came here with the intention to eat an awesome seafood lunch, but we had no idea which restaurant to pick or what to do, really… so, after wandering around for 10 minutes and gawking at all the cool looking seafood swimming around and checking out a couple of restaurants… we walked by this fishmonger who called out to me in Cantonese first… then Mandarin… then in really good English… saying “Are you guys looking to eat seafood?”. I asked him… yeah, which restaurant is good. He points back down an alley and says that one is good, but you can pick your seafood from me and they will cook it up for you anyway you want. This is when the Mrs. and I looked at each other and said… wow, had no idea you can do this and this sounds pretty cool… So, we started asking him questions about things in his tanks and what they are and if they are good/pricey/cheap/how to cook them.
What ended up happening is we picked two of these babies up first… Mrs. RHHOG said these Mantis Shrimps (huge centipede looking things that do look like shrimp at all) are a specialty of Hong Kong… BUT she has NEVER tried them while growing up in HK!!! They are also commonly called “Pissing Shrimps” for their propensity to shoot out water when picked up. Anyways, in reading more about these critters, they are neither shrimps or mantids… just a type of crustacean that taste closer to a lobster than shrimp. So, I said… we must get a couple big ones to try. He suggested doing a classic salt and pepper style.
Next, we wanted to try a crab… but one we’ve never had before. He picked up this really dark (black or dark blue color) crab and said… this type is really good and not too expensive. We asked for a larger one and he hand selected this one.
Then we got some snails for good measure… he suggested cooking these in a spicy broth…
So, after he bags the selections, he leads us to the restaurant and talked to them about how to prepare them for us and the restaurant folks took over at that point. Now, this is our first experience doing this and I know you don’t have to as you can probably just order from the restaurant and they will deal with the fishmongers, but it was fun. Also, I’m sure we overpaid a little as we did not haggle at all, but it was still fun. Next post will be the cooked stuff.