Growing up in Hong Kong meant seeing my mom visit the traditional wet market every day. In the last three decades much has changed. The level of cleanliness has improved substantially. Large governmental structures houses most of the fresh food hawkers, divided into various sections; fruit & vegetables, dried goods, meat, seafood, poultry and cooked food. Some still maintain their presence on the street with their goods spread out onto the pavements or sidewalks. It is an aspect of Hong Kong that I treasure.
Fresh is the name of the game in Hong Kong. Variety is also highly regarded.
Imagine, a slab of soft tofu that’s so fresh, steam is still rising off as the vendor cut out a square for your purchase. It is without preservatives. It is not wrapped up in plastic containers and stored in the supermarket refrigerators with an expiration dates stamped on top.
Yes, the floor is wet and may get my shoes dirty but it will wash off. Though I still tip toe around the seafood section when I accidentally wear my sandals to the market with mom. Each neighborhood in Hong Kong boasts at least one government built market and a strip of street vendors. The top floor sometimes houses mini restaurants with delicious cooked food.
Each time I visit the market with my mom, I see variety of vegetables and fruits I have never seen before in any other country. The vendor can typically offer up a recipe or two, if one is willing to try something new.
Walk with me through the market…
One thing that is unique to Hong Kong is the measurement of weight at the market. It is not based in kilograms (metric) or pounds (imperial). It is based on Catty (kan). This webpage offers a method of conversion. It can be confusing as all three units of measurements can be found.