How Bangkok Does Street Food

As a corollary to last week’s post about street food in Canada, I thought I’d look at how it’s done in Bangkok, where food vendors can be found on every street at just about every hour of the day. Though it suffers from capital city syndrome, which means the food isn’t quite as good as […]

Posted in: Asia Pacific, Food, Public Space, Society and Culture by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on How Bangkok Does Street Food , , , , ,

Food Trucks in Five Cities

It was one of my most memorable meals in Canada: fried, profoundly sweet local beets; a spicy stir-fried mélange of brussel sprouts and cauliflower; and British Columbia haddock served with naan and rice in a coconut curry. And it all came from a truck — actually, two trucks, to be precise, Le Tigre and Vij’s […]

The Sacred Food Court

Seats of imperial power are often regarded with a certain reverence — they provoke admiration, astonishment, even fear. That’s certainly the case in New Delhi, where British colonialists built a series of massive, belittling monuments to their rule, or in Washington, DC, where the Mall is increasingly seen by its National Park Service administrators not […]

What is Street Food?

Robyn Eckhardt asks a deceptively simple question today on Eating Asia: what is street food? The answer seems obvious, because street food is food that is bought and consumed on the street. Pretzels? Okay. Noodle soups? Sure. Satay? Of course. But there’s more to it. Eckhart writes that, beyond location, the essence of street food […]

Posted in: Asia Pacific, Food, Latin America, Public Space, Society and Culture by Christopher DeWolf Comments Off on What is Street Food? , , , , , ,

Rebuilding the Market Economy

It used to be routine: wake up, walk to the wet market and buy the day’s fresh ingredients for dinner. Markets have always been a part of Hong Kong life, but these days, they are losing ground to supermarkets, whose numbers have grown exponentially over the past two decades. Chain supermarkets Wellcome and Park’n’Shop now […]

Morning Coffee: Navarino

Eight years ago, I was an undergraduate student in Montreal, living in a two-room apartment that had nice wood floors but no natural light. One morning in early December, I awoke with my girlfriend, who had an end-of-semester exam, and as we left my building we discovered a thick blanket of fresh show that had […]

The Mysterious Origins of Hong Kong Cuisine

Hong Kong-style pastries for sale in Mongkok Every day for more than 60 years, the ovens of the Mido Café have churned out dozens of crispy pineapple buns for breakfast tea. Better known by their Chinese name, bolo bau, pineapple buns are the most emblematic of Hong Kong snacks: light, fluffy and filling, with sweet, […]

Hanoi’s Sunflower Youth

There’s something different going on next to Saint Joseph Cathedral in Hanoi. This is a popular gathering place for middle-class youth, but they’re not sitting around drinking beer like the kids in the old city. Nor are these western-influenced young Vietnamese sitting around drinking tall mochachino lattés.

Posted in: Asia Pacific, Food, Public Space, Society and Culture by Patrick Donovan Comments Off on Hanoi’s Sunflower Youth , , ,

Hong Kong Tastes Like Honey

I’ve always liked honey. Who doesn’t? But I never really understood it. Back in Canada, when I ventured into the supermarket and gazed at the various kinds of honey for sale, I was mystified by the clover honey and blueberry honey, which I bought and tried, only to find it had the same musty sweetness […]

Bees in the City

Photo by Nelson Chan It’s late on a sunny morning and Michael Leung is skulking around on the roof of an old factory building, tending to the potted flowers that feed his hungry workers: an army of 30,000 bees. “Right now this roof is just used for smoking, but eventually we want to cover at […]

Hong Kong’s Dai Pai Dong: Uncertain Future

This is the second part of a two-part series on the future of Hong Kong’s dai pai dong street eateries. Read the first part here. Steaming hot chicken in Yiu Tung Street, Sham Shui Po While the dai pai dong in Central have been given a new lease on life, it’s another story in Sham […]

Hong Kong’s Dai Pai Dong: A Bitter Taste

Toy dai pai dong model in the G.O.D. Street Culture Gallery When six dai pai dong vanished from Hong Kong’s Central district last year, fans of wok hei street food were worried that the street food stalls had disappeared for good. Now they’re back, shiner than ever after five months of renovations. New gas lines, […]

Fighting Food Inflation in Shanghai

Built in 1715, the Shangchuan Huiguan (商船会馆) or Merchant Shipping Hall, was a place for business traders to congregate for wheeling and dealing, or to rest for the night before continuing their journey. Their boats would be moored off the ports located southwest of the Bund, along the Huangpu River.

While the Hall itself is authorized for preservation, all the surrounding living quarters have fallen to the wrecking ball. Currently, a family from Anhui lives onsite and are responsible for organizing the razing. On my last trip, I noticed many plots of vegetables surrounding the Hall, on what had been rubble only months ago. Any left over vegetables were laid out to dry in various parts of the house.

Posted in: Asia Pacific, Food, Heritage and Preservation, Society and Culture by Sue Anne Tay Comments Off on Fighting Food Inflation in Shanghai , , , ,

How a Roast Duck Sees Chinatown

Melbourne’s Chinatown as shot with a camera made from a duck Earlier this week, I paid a visit to Martin Cheung‘s studio in the Cattle Depot Artists’ Village in To Kwa Wan. I was there to speak to him about his work with pinhole photography, a medium that uses crude, handmade cameras to record images […]