And posing in vast, open fields:
I have heaps of great photos so I may very well do a write-up of my trip, even though we had very little in terms of interesting eats. Come to think of it, I don't think we had any interesting eats. Thanks to the fact that we signed up for the trip as part of a Chinese tour group, we were forced to eat cheap, bland food for the duration of our time there. Stuff like steamed catfish (which looked deformed and off-colour), fried eggs, and stringy, stir-fried vegetation. Urgh. Therefore, it was with relish that I devoured dinner at My Chinese Kitchen in Burwood. It was the first decent meal I've had in over a week.
We've been here on many, previous occasions, and enjoyed the food immensely on every visit. The dishes are interesting, and the prices reasonable. We always order the Nanjing Duck. Don't be put off by the pallid appearance of the dish. The flesh of the duck is flavourful (and salty! very salty!) with shaoxing wine, soy sauce and sesame oil, and the skin is quite addicting.
Nanjing Duck, half for $13.80 (1/4 for $7.80)
The Pan-Fried Fish with Soy Sauce is our second cold dish. The fish has been fried, and then soaked in a mixture of soy sauce and sugar. Again, a dish we order every time.
Pan-Fried Fish with Soy Sauce, $9.80
Rationalising that I've been living off of catfish for the past week, I insisted that we order the Spice Salt Soft Shell Crab, which arrives piled in a golden heap. The crab has been battered and deep-fried, and is wondrously crunchy without tasting greasy at all - the mark of a deft hand at controlling the temperature of the frying oil. "I've been eating steamed fish all week", I repeated in my mind, as I helped myself to what seemed like half the plate.
Spice Salt Soft Shell Crab, $18.80
The Yangzhou Meat Balls held a high fatty to lean mince ratio, and were very moist and flavourful as a result of it. The braising liquid had infused deep into the meatballs, as well as into the bed of vermicelli lining the dish.
Yangzhou Meat Balls, $15.80
The Boiled Beef in Spice Chilli Sauce was the only miss of the night. Much too salty and peppery, not to mention positively swimming in thick, starchy sauce.
Boiled Beef in Spice Chilli Sauce, $15.80
If there is a single dish that you must order at this restaurant, it is the Stir fried eel Huaian style. Each, tiny eel has been deep-fried, and then coated with a sticky, sweet and salty sauce. The combination is irresistible.
Stir fried eel Huaian style, $22.80
We ordered three steamers of Juicy Buns (aka. xiaolongbao) because they're my siblings' favourite. These ones were juicy indeed, but the wrappers were too thick, in my opinion.
Juicy buns, $7.50 for 8 pieces
The Crispy King Prawn Egg Rolls were beautifully presented, but unfortunately were nondescript in flavour.
Crispy King Prawn Egg Rolls, $18.80
The Steamed Duck with Prawn Dumplings, by comparison, is something I would definitely order again. The duck is covered with the same thick, sticky, and slightly-sweet sauce as many of the other dishes. A ring of prawn dumplings in egg wrappers encircles the generous serving of duck.
Steamed Duck with Prawn Dumplings, $24.00
As usual, our eyes were bigger than our stomachs and we had over-ordered. We were beyond full by this point, but we still had a few dishes to go. Next to arrive was the Pork Ribs in Special Shallot Sauce. The pork turned out to be so succulent and delicious that I polished off a sizable portion despite my ready-to-burst stomach. The ribs are brought to us wrapped in foil, and the waiter pulls apart the meat and soaks it in its own cooking liquid (the "Special Shallot Sauce", I presume) at our table.
Pork Ribs in Special Shallot Sauce, $18.80
The pork after being pulled apart
Some of us were groaning "no more!" by now, but we still had one more dishes to go. Our final pick for the night was the Steamed Egg Plant with Salted Fish. The salted fish was somewhat stinky. I was honestly too full to appreciate the dish.
Steamed Egg Plant with Salted Fish, $15.80
Oh wow. I feel bloated simply writing all that down ;P
All in all, a highly recommended restaurant!
My Chinese Kitchen
195A Burwood Road,
Burwood, NSW 2134
Phone: (02) 9715 6699