Food and Beverage
One of the things that sets Shenzhen apart from Hong Kong is the food. A city of migrants, Shenzhen has eateries serving more than Cantonese cuisine . There are restaurants serving dishes from all over China!
I’m not sure why I like the Sha Xian Cookshop (沙县小吃) so much. My best friend in Hong Kong, who sometimes accompanies me on cross-border massage runs, refuses to eat there because he doesn’t think it’s ‘clean’.
But I have NEVER gotten sick after eating there – even in the torrid days of mid-summer. I’ve been eating there for several years. And I DO like the simple but delicious food!
Some kind of eggs in a brown liquid sit in a rice cooker at the front of the shop, and I have NEVER been tempted to try them. There are a couple of ‘dishes’ on the menu, which hangs on the wall. However ….
Yummy Steamed Dumplings
For me, it’s all about those unpretentious steamed dumplings. Are they the eatery’s signature dish?
You get eight of them for 4 yuan – and there’s no waiting. They are served pronto! – with a peanut (or is that sesame?) dipping sauce. I usually add some vinegar and hot sauce to the dip.
If you’re not familiar with Chinese fast food, there are usually containers of hot sauce, vinegar, and soy sauce on the table. To my taste – because I’m not a big fan of salt – the food is usually salty enough. So I don’t mess with the soy sauce.
Since I like strong flavours, however, I pile on lots of hot sauce and vinegar – continuing to add more as I consume my meal. Flavours seem to ‘diminish’ as you eat. So I like to ‘further enhance’ the flavour as I go.
Noodles with Pork and Vegetables
The picture says it all! Don’t those noodles look delicious? And I can ASSURE you. They taste much, much better than they look!
The sliced pork noodles with vegetables cooked in soy sauce and sesame butter are another one of my favourites at this little eatery, which serves Fujian Cuisine, one of the so-called Eight Great Cuisines of China. They run 10 yuan, and they never disappoint.
I sometimes try ordering something else, but I always come back to the sliced pork noodles with vegetables …
Homemade Hot Sauce
One of the things about these no-nonsense family run eateries in China … home-made hot sauce! Not that it always tastes better than the stuff that you buy at the supermarket.
But don’t you think it’s ‘fun’ to experiment with new flavours? And they have often been specifically concocted to go with the flavours of the dishes that the restaurant serves!
And another one of the nice things about dining at family run eateries like this is the lack of pretension. There are no signs on the wall saying, ‘If you didn’t buy it here, don’t eat it here.’
Translation? If they don’t serve beer (which this place doesn’t), you can bring your own and drink it – without anyone looking at you as though you’re doing something wrong.
They might even bring you a glass. Not always – but it DID happen once when I was dining there with a friend …
Sha Xian Cookshop (沙县小吃), 1068-10 People’s Road South (人民南路1068-10号), Shenzhen, China (not far from the Shangri-La hotel, Shenzhen).