It’s decision time over Lunar New Year gifts.
There are plenty of options but you can’t go wrong with a box of egg rolls. Who wouldn’t want to receive them?
There’s something about the rich aroma of egg and butter that greets your senses when you open the box.
And for some serious fans, a certain store in North Point comes to mind.
In fact, few of them have not heard of Duck Shing Ho (德成號).
It was founded as a small grocery store before it started making egg rolls in the 1960s after it was overrun by supermarket chains.
Duck Shing Ho egg rolls are heavily buttered, giving them thick, crispy layers favored by customers.
The rolls are made by hand like the first one that came off Duck Shing Ho’s kitchen 55 years ago.
That means no mass production, which makes each egg roll somewhat rare.
On opening day, people stand in line for hours on end to buy the first boxes, a scene that is repeated this time each year.
You might reach the front of the queue when the last box has been taken but not to worry — you can always get Dashijie (大師姐) egg rolls.
They’re also hand-made and comes in four flavors — original, sesame, pork floss, and spring onion from Taiwan’s Sanxing township.
Unlike many sloppy yellow rolls with those inky dots, Dashijie’s sesame egg rolls look and taste good.
The scent and taste of sesame promise to make each bite a feast for the taste buds.
The secret is in those tiny black seeds which are said to be laboriously processed on both sides of the supply-demand chain.
First, these are stir-fried in Hong Kong to bring forth their full flavors and then shipped to Taiwan to be rolled by hand.
The same applies to the Sanxing spring onion-flavored rolls.
Last but not least is After Taste, a brand of handmade egg rolls new to the Hong Kong market.
It’s made by Yat Hing Trading, a 35-year-old company formerly engaged in original equipment manufacturing.
Its flagship product comes in one flavor only — original.
But make no mistake. It’s made as carefully and lovingly as the best in the market.
And that’s as it should be.
Egg roll lovers can spot a problem with an egg roll from memory, so there’s no hiding any flaws.
After Taste egg rolls use only the first harvest of eggs from its own chicken farm.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Jan. 19.
Translation by Darlie Yiu
[Chinese version 中文版]
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