Saturday, July 25, 2009

Utensils (This week's Photo Hunt theme)

When thinking of utensils, I tend to think more of knives, forks, spoons and chopsticks over such as pans and pots. But since the online Merriam-Webster dictionary defines utensils as "an implement, instrument, or vessel used in a household and especially a kitchen", I'm going ahead and putting up photos of the kind of vessel in which super delicious clay pot rice is cooked (along with toppings like Chinese sausages, pork spare ribs and salted fish).

Although its name sounds generic, clay pot rice actually is a beloved Hong Kong specialty dish that's considered particularly suitable to eat in winter -- and one that, for all of its being a budget food (we're talking around the high teens to low 20s in Hong Kong dollars per pot (i.e., about US$2-3), has famous fans including Anthony Bourdain.

It's with a bit of foodie pride that I have to say that my mother and I discovered the Four Seasons claypot rice eatery years before Mr. Bourdain. (It helps that the place is not so much near Temple Street but in the same area as the invaluable Broadway Cinematheque.) In fact, when we started eating there, it actually was a dai pai dong with tables on Temple Street itself.

These days, however, the Four Seasons has moved indoors and one street away (to the east) from Temple Street. However, the woman who ran the stall and now the indoor eatery -- I'm sorry but "restaurant" still does seem too fancy a word for the place! -- is the same friendly soul who recognises and seems very happy to see my mother each time she visits (though, alas, she can't seem to remember me!)... ;b


Carver said...

That looks and sounds delicious. I always enjoy your posts so much. In addition to the photographs they are also so well written. Happy weekend.

jmb said...

You made a great post after all, out of this mundane theme. My brain was mush on this topic.

Happy weekend YTSL

Unknown said...

i love those ceramic pots! i used to go with a friend to Chinatown [in Manila] to binge on Chinese food. one of our favorite was a hot pot dish served in a similar ceramic pot.:P

ipanema said...

oh i miss that claypot! i love all food cooked with a claypot.

happy weekend! :)

LifeRamblings said...

what a delicious entry. I always like food in claypot. It tastes so much better.

eastcoastlife said...

I miss claypot rice! Lucky I can have it anytime in Singapore. :)

Liz Hinds said...

I checked the dictionary too! That rice pot dish looks good!

Bengbeng said...

reminds me... i must cook something similar tomorrow.... but cook in rice cooker of course... to troublesome in ceramic pot...some more Benghui wont b able to discern the difference hahaha

jams o donnell said...

Ooh thast looks so tasty! Have a great weekend

YTSL said...

Hi Carver --

I'm so glad that Photo Hunters like you are taking the time to read my commentary as well as look at photos. Thanks much for doing so. Really. :)

Hi jmb --

Thanks for thinking so re my post and no, I wouldn't say your brain was mush on the topic! ;b

Hi luna miranda --

How come "used to"? Are you too far away to do so these days? If so, so sad!

Hi ipanema --

Claypot rice really can be ever so yummy. Especially in cool(er) weather! :)

Hi Life Ramblings --

It's not just delicious... I wish I could somehow incorporate smells into the blog entry because it's one of those dishes that really does smell so very good too. :b

Hi Eastcoastlife --

You may be able to have it any time in Singapore but is it as good there as in Hong Kong? ;b

Hi Liz --

From what I can gather, quite a few of us searched the dictionary for this particular Photo Hunt entry! It really was one of the more challenging Photo Hunt themes, wasn't it?!

Hi Bengbeng --

Benghui won't be able to discern the difference... yet. But soon... as I get the feeling that yours is a house of gourmands! :b

Hi jams --

It was/is tasty! Hope you have a good weekend too! :)

Four-eyed-missy said...

Hello YTSL!
There's a place here in PP that serves hot pot dishes that my husband and I frequently visit. Yum. You know what, it's one cooking utensil I wish I have just so I could make my own hot pot dishes at home. I bet it is not easy.

Thanks for your nice comment, it made my day!

Annie said...

I looked up utensil in the dictionary too! I would love to try clay pot rice someday. Your photos make my mouth water.

Happy weekend.

Gemma Wiseman said...

This is the first time I have heard of clay pot rice! I imagine that such a pot would ensure the flavour holds well! The pot (and the dish) look wonderful!

Hootin Anni said...

great photo...and the rice looks scrumptious.

My photos are posted. See if you can find the 'eight' implements I used. If you can find time sometime today to stop by....

Happy Saturday.

Gattina said...

We have clay pots here too they are called Roman pots, and it's true everything you cook in there has a very good taste !

lissa said...

a very useful pot now if only I can cook...

YTSL said...

Hi all --

Before anything else: hope those of you reading this comments thread will check out my blog entry in memory of a wonderful Malaysian filmmaker...

On a happier note:-

Hi Sreisaat --

Glad I could make your day -- and that there's a place in PP where you and your husband can eat hot pot. :)

Hi Annie --

Hope you get a chance to try clay pot rice some day. :)

Hi Greyscale Territory --

The flavor's great -- and also the crunchy rice at the bottom of the pot! :)

Hi Hootin' Anni --

Okay, I'll go have a look at your blog in a bit... ;b

Hi Gattina --

Trust the Romans to have come up with a similar/parallel cooking idea! ;b

Hi Lissa --

Me too!

Marites said...

if i'm not mistaken, this is the same place that we've gone to years before and oh yes, the food is really delicious:) I really miss it now.

My PH is up too.

YTSL said...

Hi Marites --

Good on you if you've eaten at the eatery where this claypot rice is served! ;b