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Guide to Hong Kong traditional desserts

Time Out Hong Kong
  • Written by Time Out Hong Kong
Guide to Hong Kong Traditional Desserts

In Cantonese cuisine, dessert serves as the perfect ending to a full feast or even a quick dim sum meal. And the local cuisine in Hong Kong is nothing if not varied. Forget ice cream or spongey puddings, traditional desserts here often — though not exclusively — come in the shape of warm, sweet soups. Here are the must-haves when you’re in town and looking to eat like a local.

Egg tarts

Egg tarts

A Hong Kong sweet staple, the buttery pastry crust of an egg tart paired with its creamy egg custard centre is a heavenly combo. These humble treats can be found at most local bakeries and cha chaan tengs including Tai Cheong Bakery Get me there {{title}} Address {{address}} Website {{website}} More info , which happens to be a favourite of former governor Chris Patten.

Tofu pudding

Tofu pudding

Tofu pudding is essentially a bowl of the smoothest and softest bean curd served in clear syrup and sweetened ginger. Its melt-in-your-mouth silky texture makes it one of the most beloved desserts in Hong Kong. Kung Wo Beancurd Factory Get me there {{title}} Address {{address}} Website {{website}} More info ’s offering is top draw, with a rich soybean flavour.

Black sesame sweet soup

Black sesame sweet soup

Though it may look ominous, this thick, charcoal-coloured sweet soup is the perfect treat to combat any chills. A slurp of its hot, sticky broth can warm you down to your soul. Restaurants like the lauded dessert joint Gai Gai Dessert Get me there {{title}} Address {{address}} Website {{website}} More info give you the option to add glutinous rice balls for extra texture.

Mango sago pomelo pudding

This delightfully sweet and refreshing dessert is particularly popular during summer. Packed with flavours, scoop up thick mango and pomelo chunks — which provides a nice citrusy tone — nestled in a bed of cool, creamy puree. Honeymoon Desserts is king when it comes to mango desserts. Head there for a mouth-watering portion.

Luk Lam Dessert

Sweet red bean soup

Red bean soup is slow-cooked to create a thick, creamy texture, and can be found in most Hong Kong dessert shops such as Luk Lam Dessert in Sham Shui Po. The beans are packed with iron and, according to Chinese medicine, they’re full of yang-replenishing nutrients, too. Luk Lam allows you to mix-and-match any extra ingredients you want including glutinous rice balls, ice cream, sweet potato and fruits.

Beancurd sheet sweet soup

Another local delight with tofu, this dessert utilises tofu skin boiled with white rock sugar. It’s a light and smooth treat, often prepared with ginkgo nuts and barley, and occasionally with a boiled egg depending on preferences. Chiu Chow Hop Shing Dessert makes a killer version, served either hot or cold, and can be a welcome relief for any dry throats.

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