Sunday, May 26, 2013

Hoang Mai a true gem

Hey there, how are you? I hope you missed me. In case you are wondering, I do miss you!!! After such a long long long hiatus. I finally decided that I love to blog and still want to write and take pictures of tasty foods and meals. So without long intro here goes my first post in 2013.

The weather is uncomfortably cold and rainy, I can accept it if it's october or even september but it's in the end of May, where's sunny spring? Anyway what food do I crave for when it's rainy and cold? A bowl of warm pho of course! Funny thing is, I've never been a fan of pho, I just felt that it's a boring dish. It's nothing more than plain beef broth with some beef slices and herbs. But there are days, when clear beefy broth is a must have, especially for sick days or days like these! 

Fortunately, I know a good place that serve authentic Pho whenever my craving hits - Hoang Mai. Every Sunday for Brunch time, you will find Vietnamese families spending their time here. Don't expect a pretty decorated chic cafe. This place is merely a square room filled with basic tables and chairs, just functional enough for anyone who wishes to eat in. But if you can forgive their interior, you are going to get food as if it's made in Chiang Mai.

The Pho you see here comes with the complimentary fresh herbs, bean sprouts, and the freshly sliced bird eye chillies. The golden stuff at the top left is quẩy, Vietnamese style cruller, which is shorter than the Chinese variety. If you wonder what is this cruller doing near a bowl of Pho, it's because I love to dip crullers into soup. There's just something about eating deep fried food that has soaked all the goodness of a soup. Either way, a koay in pho is really nice to have. Anyway, I digress, back to the pho! Notice the pinkiness of the meat! I don't need to tell you that the meat are really tender! ... mmmmhhhh

Hubby was craving for Bun Cha instead (like the one in Dong Xuan Center in Berlin). So he ordered rice noodles with deep fried spring rolls and deep fried Vietnamese pork sausage instead of pork belly. I tasted some of the rice noodles. They were ok. But, the deep fried spring rolls were heavenly. It's peppery and porky, and soo crispy that you got that satisfying "crunch" when you bite into it. 

We also ordered shrimps summer rolls as side dishes.
Each roll has 3 shrimps, some rice noodles, salads and herbs. The size of the shrimps were huge for the price that we are paying. It was fresh and cold, and dipped with the hoisin sauce, it was perfect.

The best part of the meal is *drum rolls* Dessert!
The dessert is a combination of different Asian Jello like Cendol, Cincau, red beans, green beans, yellow beans and nata de coco. The Vietnamese have different terms for all these jello, but I only know the Indonesian names. The mixture of all these goodies are topped with coconut milk and lots of ice. Exactly how we do dessert in Asian. Come say it together with me. ..... Yummmmyyyy .... 

Because it was so good, here is a picture of the dessert again: but after all the goodies are mixed up.

No I'm not finished yet, I save the best for the last. Are you ready? Everything that we ate only cost around 5 euro, yes 5 euro all those beef and shrimps and the drink/dessert cost 1,50. So what are you waiting for? Get into the U-Bahn & Bus, Go there right away :P ... But make sure you  pay attention to their opening hours.

One more interesting tidbit. There's a Vietnamese supermarket right next to Hoang Mai (in fact, they are connected with an indoor door). When you're there, don't forget to buy their tasty vietnamese baos. They cost 1,50 euro each but they're huge and filled with generous portion of minced pork, egg and vermicelli.  

Hoang Mai
Öjendorfer Damm 42
22043 Hamburg