A Total Guide to Five Fantastic Noodles near HKU and Their Whereabouts

Noodles, one of the most indispensable ingredients of Chinese cuisine, yet it can be unraveled into too many different yet flavorful contrasting forms. If unaware of its mass family tree, walking into a Hong Kong noodle shop will be more of searching for one strand of hair in a luscious mane.

Noodles differ in shape, size, texture, flavor all depending on its method of preparation, allowing each plate to be unique in its own delicious way. As you can imagine the luscious swirly noodle swooped up into your watering mouth. The juiciness and chewiness seem to fulfill one’s all satisfaction. Ultimately, noodle occupies a prestigious place in the Chinese cuisine history because of its diversity and beauty in flavor.

Not everyone understands the detailed classification among noodles, and this article is here to save you from embarrassment! I’ve come up with my list of the five most popular varieties of noodles and where to find them near the University of Hong Kong. After reading it, you will be able to voice your selection with great confidence. Let’s go, foodies!

1. UDON

Udon is a type of thick noodles stretched and carved from wheat flour. It gives a chewy flavor with the attribute of absorbing the plentiful taste of miso soup. Originating from Japanese cuisine, it was served with miso soup and Tempura. However, once its popularity reaches to Hong Kong, people have created their unique way to consume this richly flavored noodle. Now you will see it as a common dish in any Chinese cuisine, such that it varies from pan-fried, served with chicken soup to be a cold dish, and so on.

Chicken soup udon

This Japanese style of noodle is so adored by Hong Kong people that even if very likely you need to pay extra to enjoy it, people are willing to commit to udon’s worth to get its chewy taste. “I never understand when you need to pay more in Hong Kong,” said Yuan Can, a first-year student at HKU from Guizhou Province. “But I’m willing to do so for udon.”

Yuan savoring hotpot udon with her classmate

Where to Find it:

  • Fairwood, Shop No. 231, Podium Level 2, The Westwood of The Belcher’s, No. 8 Belcher’s Street, Shek Tong Tsui

 

2. KANSUI NOODLES

The most iconic dish would go to wonton noodles for its unique position in Cantonese’s heart. The iconic noodles are made of flour, duck eggs and kansui (a solution of potassium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate). The kansui adds alkalinity, and thus the noodles have a golden appearance and palatable chewiness.

Yuen Hing Lung carries out a pleasing version. Even standing across the street, you can smell the alkalinity steam of its noodles in the air. The shop owner Ms. Choi told me, it’s the “authentic materials” that attract a steady stream of customers. “We use the best flour, so the noodles are firm and al dente. People love our fresh prawns in the wonton, too.”

Two customers looking at menus in front of Yuen Hing Lung

However, Yuan, the 19-year-old mainland student, dislikes the tough texture of kansui noodles “It’s like chewing a wire netting.” It is true that the texture and scent of it do not appeal to most of the people from out of town. If you don’t enjoy the flavor of alkalis, try to add some red vinegar into the soup, and it will help to neutralize the smell.

Where to Find it:

  • Yuen Hing Lung Noodles, 453 Queen’s Road West

 

3. CHUI CHOW NOODLES

“Chiu Chow noodles is a variety to be exact,” said Mr. Yung, the owner of Yung Kee Noodle. “We give freedom to our customers.” He proudly toured me around his kitchen and introduced me to all the noodles that he offers. From top to bottom of the shelf that he uses to store the produced noodles, there were thick vermicelli, thin vermicelli, thick egg noodles and ho fun. Kansui noodles were also available.

Mr. Yung introducing Chiu Chow noodles

Diners can customize the toppings of their selected Chiu Chow noodles. Options include squid or beef balls, turnip, pork, beef brisket, pig blood, pig intestines, lettuce and many others.

“Thick egg noodles are the most popular in my shop,” said Mr. Yung, “They have a smooth and tender feel. And the taste of egg will boost the flavor of the soup.”

Egg noodles are the favorite of Dong Xinhang, another HKU first-year student from Shaanxi Province. “My mother always made me egg noodles when I was little,” said Dong, “People tend to eat what they are accustomed to at home, and so am I.”

Where to Find it:

  • Yung Kee Noodle, 455-485 Queen’s Road West, Shek Tong Tsui

 

4. RICE NOODLES

These rice vermicelli noodles are called “crossing the bridge” noodles. It is often served with sour and spicy soup, but you can always dial down the level of spiciness. Their popularity is undoubted in Hong Kong but be prepared to queue if you want to dine in Central, Tsim Sha Tsui, or Causeway Bay. Luckily, the competition among diners is less vigorous in Western District.

Spicy rice noodles with chicken

Yu Mai and A-1 are the two restaurants I would recommend. It won’t be difficult to guess what Yu Mai, which literally means fish and rice noodles in Chinese, primarily offers in the restaurant. Their fish comes as a whole, which is very rare in Hong Kong. A-1, instead, developed a fame in the rice noodle market near HKU by serving crispy fried pork chops as a main dish.

Where to Find it:

  • Yu Mai, 30 Whitty Street, Sai Ying Pun
  • A-1 Spicy Pork Chop Noodles Restaurant, 7-11 Belcher’s Street, Kennedy Town

 

5. SWEET POTATO NOODLES

Last but not least, sweet potato noodles are also a popular option. “I like the transparent look and feel of sweet potato noodles, and it tastes amazing when its pan-fried,” said Jerry Cui, a final-year student at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Sweet potato noodles that I made

If you dine in Barchua House, your bowl of noodles will arrive steaming at the table, and your noodles will reflect the natural light, sparkling and crystal-clear. Sweet potato noodles suits Szechuan hotpot in Tao Yuan Restaurant exceptionally well.

Where to Find it:

  • Barchua House,362 Des Voeux Road West, Shek Tong Tsui
  • Tao Yuan Restaurant, 17 Yat Fu Ln, Shek Tong Tsui

 

Reporter: Jasmine HONG
Editor: Evelyn YE
Copy Editor: Ivy LI
Content Manager: Sarah WONG

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