On Friday, we held a meetup with six Hounds starting at Richmond Public Market. We ordered from the Xian stall and the halal stall (oh, and milk tea from HK cafe stall plus bubble tea). A couple of lamb skewers from each for taste testing (Xian's won -- bigger pieces, juicier, not gristly). We also had RJM and the pork with rice and fluffly white buns which were popular. From the Xinjiang halal stall, we had the Xinjiang flak crystal (mung bean cakes served warm), the bean crystal cool noodles (mung bean noodles served cold), the potato shreds (no ma, but one of my favourite renderings so far), the xinjing hemp leafage (!) which was a 1/2 lb mass of extruded deepfried dough that did have some good ma tingle but not from hua jiao and the fried bean curd/tofu. No duds in the bunch from my perspective and it all came to $33 (minus drinks which not everyone ordered), so pretty cheap. I ended up making most of the ordering decisions which was fun but nerve wracking, so it stands to reason I would like everything. I had only had the two "hamburger" items from Xian before so it was great to try a bunch of new stuff with adventurous 'Hounds.
Four of us then went on to President's plaza to try O'trays RJM and omelet, plus a bowl of lamb noodle soup and some deep fried rice cakes from the stall to the left of O'tray (forgot to write down the name). We also got pork and beef pan fried dumplings from the 2nd last stand on the west wall where we had tried them before. All of these dishes were good, though the buns were maybe a bit less flaky on the RJM than usual, and I thought the noodles in the soup were a bit soft. The rice cake was a surprise as it appeared to have been either marinated or the rice cooked in some kind of tasty stock before being deepfried. At 75 cents each, a good deal too. And did I mention they're deep fried?
A foray into T'n'T followed, where bdachow picked up a couple of items (hope she likes the lavendar milk tea!) and then she and her friend headed off. Betterthanbourdain and I toodled over to Parker Place to tour the mall and food court, picking up some crispy roast pork at the bbq shop there and sampling some jerky (I like Bee Kim Heng better though). Then we went to HK BBQ Master for more crispy pork and some char siu for dinner. The SO and I had our own little taste test -- he prefers the Parker Place roast pork because it has a "funkier" flavour, while I liked the HKBBQM version which is just a touch sweeter and has a thicker crunchy coating, but it was very close. We were both in love with the char siu, especially the outside pieces that were in places almost black with caramelization but somehow not overly sweet.