Saturday, August 07, 2010

Aug 1st - Richmond Night Market - Asian Street Food Fest, Vancouver Summer Must

Crazy Crowds at Richmond Night Market
At least once or twice a year, D and I head down to the unlikely empty lot in an industrial park in Richmond, behind the Home Depot and the Ikea, for some of the best Asian Street food you'll get on this side of the Pacific.  It is rather strange, given the penchant for Asian food here which is so very evident on every street in Vancouver, that there are so few permanent establishments.  There are events and festivals where they often appear and believe you me, I am there getting my fix of fresh, made in front of you Asian Street Food (regulated by the Canadian Health Code :^P)

The crowds here have grown to epic proportions.  You are best advised to come near the opening time if you want to avoid them... for a short while.  Also, if you are there toward the end, you are likely to find alot of 'mall-rats'.  If you're a teen on Summer vaca and you fancy a cruise, then come after sunset.  With all the food on wooden skewers at a shoulder distance away, it certainly is not my ideal time. :^)  Plus, I am not really a good crowd person.  I try to make my way out of the food stalls by then and over the flea market area.  After you are sated by Bulgogi, Squid and Fish Sui, you can fill up on cartoon socks, grey market iPhone accessories, Samurai swords and cheap sunglasses.

A couple of tips, for Dim Sum, I like the place closest to the exit. Higher turnover. As well, there are 2 of the three Takoyaki places that have larger balls than the third and they're all the same price.  Have a look first. I like the one with the Blue Banner.  The Filipino booth did not have alot of turn over so their food was cold. The Korean Fish waffles, though they appear 'trendy', have been around for ages.  My dad ate them as a kid. The Red Bean one is the most traditional. The Korean Rice Cake stew, Duhkbokki, is very spicy.  That ain't Tomato sauce on the Rice Cake (Duhk) it is Chili Sauce. Here is the line up for our feast:

Tako Yaki are Octopus Pancake Balls but now made with different Seafood. Topped with Japanese Mayo, Sweet Sauce and Bonito Flakes. I had 6 Scallop and D had 6 Shrimp:

Duck Rolls are D's favourite.  Crispy Pancakes stuffed with BBQ Duck topped with a Hoisin sauce.

BBQ Pork Bun are D's staple Asian food snack.  He is picky about these since you can get them in every stall and regular shops.  He will walk around until he finds the right size and slightly split mouth at the top like an exploding Hershey's kiss.

BBQ's squid.  They will chop these up for you to order.

D also had Pork Sui but I seem to have forgotten to snap it.  They are an open Pork Dumpling that looks like a cup stuffed with meat.  They are steamed.

Korean streetfood favourite and now found in may restaurants is Duhkbokki aka Spicy Fish Cake and Rice cake Stew.  It is fairly spicy if you do it right.  That is not Tomato sauce.  It is a thick Chili sauce made from Gochujang.  One of my childhood favourites. Mom puts alot more veg in her Duhkbokki for me.

I had my regular of Korean Red Bean Crepe.  The batter is like a Crepe but it is called a Waffle mainly because it is made in a Waffle form.  I like eating these because they remind me of my dad's stories as a child during the war.  They did not have alot of money and they used to stalk the local street vendor who made these until he gave them one.  He think's it's so funny now that you can get a bag full for a couple of bucks.  At the market, they are 1$ each and come in Custard and Chocolate as well.  The real thing is Red Bean.  The turn over is crazy so you are always going to get a volcanically hot one.

This was a new one for me.  Actually, I do not recall a Filipino stall the last couple of years.  It may well have been there but they were especially boisterous this year.  I had the Filipino Banana Fritter.  It was a Banana wrapped in a thin Pancake and deep fried.  They had Chocolate and Carmel Sauces to top them with as well.  It was cold and rather oily.  I think I will skip this next time unless I see them come straight from the fryer.

There is alot more interesting food but this is what we had.  You can also find alot of Offal if that is your thing.  As well, there is traditional carnival food like deep fried anything.  There was an interesting Japanese stand that did 'Burgers' where the bun was made of pressed rice but they only had meat ones so I could not try it.  Shame.

We also bought Razor Blades, Toothbrush and Wallet in the Flea Market area.  The Market is easily 30-40% bigger this year and the layout had changed.  The large area formerly dedicated to the stage is filled with stalls.  The stage is along the long edge with a smaller seating area which is fine because I never see anyone watching the shows.

Cost: $ (bring Loonies and Toonies)
Ambience: Crazy crowded Asian street Market
Vancouver Summer Must

Richmond Night Market
12631 Vulcan Way
Richmond, BC V6V
(604) 244-8448

Richmond Night Market on Urbanspoon

0 Leave a / Read COMMENTs: