February 1, 2007

Macau : The Las Vegas of Asia

I Quote "The Pastry Princess" on my recent Hong Kong blog post
hi there! I just read your HK entry. I just got back from HK too last week. Love the weather. The first time I went to HK, it was all fastfood for me. We were too scared to try the unfamiliar restos. But this time around, I was able to enjoy the local cuisine. And I had a huge dose of milk tea. Yum! You should have made a side trip to Macau where the pace is much slower and the streets are more colorful. And a lot less polluted :)
We did actually have 2 days to explore Macau very quickly. It was indeed worth the rush. We ventured the city streets really quickly covering the main tourist-y attractions; scouted the famous Macau delicacies and ate ourselves silly before returning to Hong Kong.

I wish we had more time to spend gambling and appreciating the amazing architecture and casinos; *shrug* I guess there's always next time.

For those who have not been introduced to Macau; here's a short summarized version for a bit of information.
Macau/Macao is a small territory on the southern coast of the People's Republic of China. Administered by Portugal until 1999, it was the oldest European colony in China, dating back to the 16th century. The administrative power over Macau was transferred to the People's Republic of China (PRC) in 1999, and it is now one of two special administrative regions of the PRC, together with Hong Kong. Besides historical Chinese and Portuguese world-heritage relics, Macau's biggest attraction is its gambling industry and casinos. (Wikepedia)
I especially loved how the locals have successfully portrayed their cultural roots through restoring old colonial buildings, speaking various languages and keeping the Portuguese cuisine very much alive. And of course..what do Portuguese people make best? Egg tarts of course *drool* so very deliciously divine! I love Portuguese eggtarts for its crisp layers of puff pastry which makes these golden little babies so very irresistible! I've been thinking about them for weeks!.. *giggle* had a go at making my own yesterday...yummy yummy; too bad the recipe only made 6 tiny tiny tarts...will make more when weight problems subside a little more *blush* hehee *rubs tummy*

1/4 cup full cream milk
1/4 cup whipping cream
4 tbps castor sugar
3 egg yolks beaten
Heat milk and cream in a heatproof bowl in the microwave for 2-3 minutes. Whisk in sugar till dissolved. Heat in microwave on high for another 1 minute. Add egg yolks in a thin stream; whisking with a balloon whisk as you go along.

1 500gms slab ready-to-use puff pastry
Defrost; Roll out into 3mm thickness, cut with an egg ring/round cookie cutter into 6 large circles and 6 approximately 1 cm smaller circles. Line each muffin tray hole with 2 rounds of pastry stacked on top of each other. Press into the muffin mould, creating a thin base of pastry in the center and thick corners coming up the sides of the mould. Repeat with all 6 and divide filling into each prepared pastry shell. Bake in preheated 170 degree oven for 25-20 minutes; or until custard in the center bloats up and is beginning to turn a golden caramelized brown.

Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. Expect them to deflate in the center...eat them right away...don't bother storing them; pastry never stays fluffy and puff too long.

*phew~ picture overload on this post! I hope I didn't make anyone lagg out from the page loading *guilty*


Grace-Y said...

actually i think u shud post more pics...coz sometimes after following ur steps,juz wanna take a peek at how ur intermediate steps look like...hehe..to reassure myself that everything is "so far,so good"...and it's worth waiting to load the page anyway =)

Anonymous said...

Whoa! Great pictures! U've really got good photographing skills! u know what? We should hv gone all the way to the other side of Macau where there's a real famous shop selling egg tarts(according to the tour guide)to try those out!...but since u know how to make 'em, i guess there's no need to ehh?? lol!

Anonymous said...

Hi!! I just came back from Hong Kong 3 days ago!! Bet you tried all the street food!!! I visited Macau for 2 days as well visiting all the good places to eat like the portugese tart place, crap congee and pork buns. Just wondering if you have the recipe on how to make "chueng fan" a street food from hong kong. It's white and has peanut butter and sweet suace on it. I'm craving for it big time!! Hehe. Keep up the good work!

Su-Yin -D├ęcorateur said...

gracey: Thanks for the feedback on the photographs..I'll try to have more "in between" shots..it just gets a little complicated with one hand on pastry and the other clicking away on my camera LOL..I cleaning my hands to reach for it is such a hassle sometimes.

chengs:Hmmm..i think there was where we were...on the "other side" Haha..it was great! we didn't get to try the famous pork buns though...no one could be bothered! the lines were CRAZY long

anna: wow! how was your holiday? Bet u had fun ! hehe...hmm...cheung fun; never actually thought of learning to make it at home; Ipoh(where i come from) has real good cheung fun hawker stalls! haha couldnt be bothered making it on my own >.<. But when I get back to Sydney; i might have a go at it..just out of curiosity...thanks for the suggestion :)

zodiak aka Rui said...

These egg tarts are based on a centuries-old Portuguese Recipe but are not the real thing. The Portuguese version is healthier then the egg tart and it's called a NATA. There's a place in Macau selling these and they are really great. Everytime i'm in Macau I pop by the cafe and have a bunch with my family. For me the portuguese NATA tastes much better. This is the only place you can get them in Asia as far as I know. I think it's woth a try to compare.

The coffeeshop is called CUPPACOFFEE and is in Taipa Island... let me get the card: R. Fernao Mendes Pinto, 104 near a chinese cafe everyone knows called Hei Lin (you can mention that name to the taxi driver).


Helder Fraguas said...

Great insight on Macau, a wonderful place for food lovers.
Helder Fraguas

Angelina said...

I didn't know that Macau make delicious egg tarts. I saw in Korean series "Princess Hour" the lead actress relocated to Macau and she bought egg tarts make me craving for egg tarts. hahaha