Chongqing style Chicken Pot at the Smithfield Cooked Food Centre

Posted: May 28, 2014 in dinner
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

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Smithfield Cooked Food Centre is at Western end of the Hong Kong Tram line.  I spent an hour walking around the neighborhood in the hopes of finding a busy restaurant to dine.  None of the restaurants had big crowds at 8:30 on a Friday night so it looked to be a making of another congee meal.  I decided to venture into the cooked food centre to see if the area was indeed a culinary wasteland.  The cooked food centre was bustling with activity.  The busiest restaurant was also the only restaurant requiring a que, none of their neighbors had line ups.  The restaurant’s forte is chicken pot done in the Chongqing style, served cooked and kept toasty on tabletop butane burners.  They even do a reptilian option, crocodile pot for those in need of something different.  The pots come in two sizes, half chicken ($108) and whole chicken and sharing with a group would be the best way to consume.

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Chicken pot is chicken marinated in chongqing spices combined with ginger, garlic and mushroom served in a giant sizzling clay pot.  After diners finish the chicken, soup stock is poured into the claypot and a gas burner is added for diners to enjoy hotpot using the residual chicken for flavour.  The hotpot portion of the meal involves typical hot pot fare so its relatively unspectacular.

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In Hong Kong, any food that is consumed hot without time for cool down requires a beverage to kick the heat.  Rather than drink beer, cold chinese herbal tea does the trick ($10).

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The restaurant also makes a salad dish that you will find on every single patrons’ table.  They had sold out by the time I arrived but it seems to be a take on japanese salads – julienne vegetables, noodles, salmon and japanese mayo.  As with all cooked food centres, you can walk over to another vendor to purchase their wares.  As I was craving salad, the thai vendor seemed the most appropriate – pomelo salad ($58).

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I will return to try the chicken pot again with a note to arrive earlier so their japanese salad will be available to order.  As with all things awesome while dining at the cooked food centres, beer is cheap and you can bring your own booze.

They open everything starting at 5pm.  Call 2816-2098 to make reservations for tables larger than 6 people.

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Comments
  1. Peter Lam says:

    This is the only place I go for chicken pot. It’s one of the best in the city, for sure.

    • is the salad dish (which I see on every table) worth ordering?

      • Peter Lam says:

        I’ve never tried the salad… I didn’t even know they had one? Usually I’m there with a bunch of friends on a weekend evening, so it could be sold out by then. We usually go for chicken pot followed by the hot pot. Once we did regular dishes instead but all agreed that they weren’t anything special – the chicken pot was much better.

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