When you just don't know what to do with that stuff

Archive for the ‘Street Food’ Category

Filling up on Guangzhou street food

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During an 11-hour layover in Guangzhou, China, was provided a 72-hour visa to roam the city while waiting for the connection to New York City. After making an obligatory stop at the Canton Tower, it was getting close to sundown and meandered to the Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street (with assistance from the accommodating staff at the tourist center at the base of the tower).

Exiting the subway station, found a street lined with small shops and restaurants, everything looked great but was skeptical if it was even the correct place. After a bit of wandering and turning down random alleyways that led to small residential enclaves, found the street. It was wide with tons of people walking around (while dodging cars that are permitted on parts of the “pedestrian street”), with stores both local and international, along with restaurants – also, both local and international.

As time went by and the ticks continued to pile up on the phone pedometer, it proved difficult finding a place to eat; not that there wasn’t anywhere to eat, but there was too much to choose from. Started snacking by stopping at roadside stands and enjoyed things like bubble tea and scallion pancakes. Happened upon a food court that was packed with people and noticed one stand putting out, what looked to be, cups of sesame chicken. It looked good and tasted even better; big, meaty hunks of chicken in a delicious sauce, all for about 25 RMB (just a bit over $3.50).

After a while, noticed the hunger was gone and realized snacking down the Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street provided enough to make a meal – and there was still so much more to enjoy.


Cravings are made of fish cakes

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There isn’t a day that doesn’t go by that the thought of a delicious street snack on a stick doesn’t come to mind. Of all the delicious treats available all over Seoul, it would seem the basic stick of fish cake and hot dog takes the lead when it comes to cravings from the last vacation. For ₩3,000 (around $2.50), the delicious flavors that can really only be found along the streets of Seoul are deliciously encompassed on a stick.

Enjoyed everything from bulgogi to steak to tteokbokki, even a macaron ice cream sandwich – all delicious – but there is just something so special about the fish cake and hot dog on a stick.

On any given day, it’s merely a matter of sitting back and thinking about strolling the streets and alleyways of Myeongdong with a stick in hand. Enjoying each morsel one by one, looking left and right at the variety of sites along the bustling thoroughfare, and hearing an assortment of K-pop hits while passing each storefront.

Fish Cake

Written by Paulo Loreto

July 16, 2016 at 6:57 AM

Steak on the street

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A first trip to Seoul and had the immense pleasure of staying in the Myeongdong neighborhood. Obviously, did research on the neighborhood that would be best conducive to a vacation that still required a few hours of work and Myeongdong was a perfect fit.

Around mid-afternoon (on weekdays) the streets fill with food carts galore, serving everything from chicken barbeque to ice cream, to traditional Korean dishes like gimbap or japchae.

After making a few rounds, was up near the 4-Line subway station when the smell or steak wafted through. There it was, a cart with a flat-top grill with beautiful steaks cooking away. With an aroma that was so embracing, no question was stopping for another snack.

₩6,000, or just a bit over US$5.00, it is lovely. Topped with a tangy sauce and some bean sprouts on the side, it was street food to another level.


Written by Paulo Loreto

June 16, 2016 at 1:29 AM


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Traveling around Taipei, a visit to one of the many markets around town is a necessity. Visiting during the day, they’re not call night markets for nothing; it’s a different world than the bustling walkways they become when the sun goes down.

When the sun is still up, there is a lot of space for walking and taking photos in the Shilin Market – although, a lot of the establishments stay closed, most likely from being open throughout the evening the previous night. In, what were mostly desolate streets, a striking sight was a long line forming outside one of the stands. Upon closer inspection, the stand was serving up huge slices of freshly baked sponge cake. These were huge cakes, the worker who removed them from the oven, went through a long process of holding the cake over his head multiple times, just to remove the tin and paper that was used in the baking process.

Once cleared and ready for consumption, the cake is sliced into eight pieces, each piece was about a foot long and eight inches deep.

Had to get in line and see what this was all about. Got a slice, it was still hot from the oven, the outside was firm and it smelled amazing, the inside had a bit of a jiggle and had almost a custardy texture. Overall, it was amazing – the best part, it was NT$60, about $1.80.

Shilin Sponge Cake

Written by Paulo Loreto

September 23, 2015 at 6:03 AM

Egg Waffles on Lantau

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Walking through the commercial village between the cable car station and the foot of the Tan Tian Buddha, you encounter a variety of shops welcome you selling everything from souvenirs, chopsticks, ice cream, Buddhist trinkets, along with a 7-11 and a Starbucks. One shop offers an array of local snacks, including freshly made egg waffles. With both original and chocolate varieties, the snack is warm and crisp once the cashier hands it over straight from the cooling rack. Essentially, it’s waffle batter that cooked into these bubbles that are light and flavorful.

If making your way back from the temple and the big Buddha, the shop is a tiny stroll back to the cable car station, and a quick step to the side offers a view of the beautiful landscape, along with Buddha in the distance, of Lantau Island; a veritable escape from the hustle and bustle of Hong Kong.

While egg waffles are available all over town, Lantau Island offers a different landscape to accompany the delicious snack.

Egg Waffles

Written by Paulo Loreto

November 26, 2014 at 3:29 AM


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Wandering down 5th Avenue in New York City, happened upon Madison Square Eats, a pop-up market featuring a variety of NYC’s culinary best. Walking south through the market, you end at a small Melt cart.

First opened in 2010, Melt has locations on Orchard Street, Chelsea Market, and the High Line. Melt is known for their array of impressive ice cream sandwiches.

After the arduous process of selecting just one, decided on one call the Cinnamax.

The Cinnamax is comprised of a generous serving of cinnamon ice cream between two snickerdoodles. The combination is nothing short of magical. The cookie is soft, but sturdy, and taking that first bite, it’s clearly not the plain old ice cream sandwich everybody is used to growing up.

The rich cinnamon sugar of the cookie is just enhanced by the tasty ice cream, an unforgettable experience – truly. And the Cinnamax is just one of several flavors they have to offer.

Melt offers a classic ice cream sandwich, but how can one decide when flavors like Cinnamax, Lovelet (Red Velvet Meltcakes with Cream Cheese Ice Cream) and Morticia (Chocolate Cookies with Malted Chocolate Rum Ice Cream) are all on display.

Melt offers a classic ice cream sandwich, but how can one decide when flavors like Cinnamax, Lovelet (Red Velvet Meltcakes with Cream Cheese Ice Cream) and Morticia (Chocolate Cookies with Malted Chocolate Rum Ice Cream) are all on display.

Written by Paulo Loreto

June 20, 2014 at 11:03 AM

Oyster Omelette

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A popular snack dish throughout Asia, the oyster omelette can typically be found served off take-out carts or hawker centers. A fairly simple-looking process, cooks prepare a basic omelette and towards the end of the process, throw in oysters. The result is a warm and delicious dish, accompanied by the sweetness of fresh oysters; a unique combination that is rare to find outside the region.

Partnered with a spicy chili sauce, each bite takes on a new level of tastiness.

This Oyster Omelette was enjoyed at the People's Park Food Centre in Singapore's Chinatown.

This Oyster Omelette was enjoyed at the People’s Park Food Centre in Singapore’s Chinatown.

Written by Paulo Loreto

January 17, 2014 at 6:53 PM