19 June 2011

Cafe de Relax ~ Hong Kong Chinese - Sussex Centre Food Court

Wedding celebrations at the Sussex Centre Food Court.

It's a happy day because Matt and Sam are getting married this afternoon. But it's a sad today because  we can't make it to Macau for the wedding. So instead we have our own wedding celebrations, Macau\Hong Kong style, back in Sydney.

In Chinatown we can almost pretend we're in Macau, with the little laneways and skyscrapers looming in the background.

We enjoy an Australian version of the wedding ceremony, through the window of a Chintown souvenir shop.

Our version of the reception is held in Chinatown's Sussex Centre Food Court.

Catering is by Cafe De Relax. Cafe de Relax does Hong Kong coffee shop style cuisine, with some Macua inspired Portuguese dishes.

The reception is a formal sit-down affair, starting with a pork chop burger, $5. A pan fried pork chop with tomato and gravy in a soft bun.

Hong Kong Rice Cakes - $5. Stodgey hunks of rice cake with three difference sauces: sweet, savoury and chili. The mix of sauces confused our Western palates.

Russian Borscht with pasta spirals - $6.50. A tomato soup with veggies and pasta. Borscht seems to be a Hong Kong cafe favourite.

For main course we have baked Portuguese chicken with either rice or spaghetti. $10.

We go for the spaghetti option of course, it's just that little wackier. The chicken is pan fried with Portuguese flavours, and smothered in a gooey, yellow sauce that tastes of coconut with a hint of curry. We love strange Asian versions of Western food, this is one of the most wonderfully wacky we've come across. We can't necessarily recommend it, but dang it's fun.

We return in December '11 for a sizzling t-bone steak - $15.50.  It's a pretty big steak, quite tender too, cooked on a flat grill and served on a bed of chips and cabbage. There's a choice of sauces (mushroom, pepper etc). We went for mushroom which was very sweet and actually contained a mushroom. The dish reminded us of something from an old fashioned pub countermeal or RSL dining room.

Double steaks with rice and spaghetti (or rice) with free ice tea, milk tea or coffee - $10.50. This dish is very popular. Choose two of chicken, beef, pork or fish. Once again it tastes very RSL, we find it quite nostalgic, and it's excellent value.

Cafe De Relax Menu - Click to Enlarge

Cafe De Relax Menu - Click to Enlarge

After dinner it's time for drinks - the Hong Kong theme continues with $2 pina coladas from our favourite Hong Kong bubble tea chain, Happy Lemon on Broadway.

Cafe de Relax is at the Sussex Centre Food Court - up the escalators at 401 Sussex Street, Chinatown.

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  1. Re. Russian Borscht
    Sorry guys your wrong!
    Borscht is Beetroot Soup.
    See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borscht

    In fact its excellent.

    I'll give a tip about quick & dirty way of making it.

    - Get a can of beetroots (whole, sliced, etc).
    - Throw out the beetroots.
    - Keep the leftover liquid and heat it near boil.
    - Add a couple of chook stock cubes & garic.
    - Throw in some ready ravioli or wontons.
    - Serve with optional sour cream.

    A real Russian wont pick the difference between this method and the traditional method.

    Its all about the beetroot taste !!!

    You will impress your guests no end.


  2. A key component to the taste of barszcz is acidity. While barszcz can be made easily within a few hours by simply cooking the ingredients and adding vinegar, lemon juice, or citric acid; the traditional way is to prepare barszcz several days in advance and allow it to naturally sour. Depending on the technique, the level of acidity required, and the ingredients available, barszcz takes 3–7 days to prepare in this way.

    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borscht

    That's why the leftover liquid frm a can of beetroots works so well.

  3. The Hong Kong cafe version of borscht has morphed into something that tastes like tomato soup, yes it's not the proper recipe, it's just a bit of fun folks :-)

  4. ps - we'll be trying your recipe, that sounds so tasty yet so easy :-)


Thanks for your comment joy - please keep your musings happy - if you want to complain about a restaurant please do it on a restaurant review site (or your own blog) - we're all about celebrating cultural diversity and the great eats that come along with it :-)

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