In an unexpected part of London that I have never ventured to before, stands Bang Bang Oriental Foodhall. Recently opened and proclaimed as the biggest oriental foodhall in London, it boasts 30 kiosks offering a variety of different delights from every corner of Asia. As the leading foodservice pr agency, we felt obliged to check it out and report back on what is has to offer.
Asian food appeals to 90% of the consumer market and is the UK’s fastest growing cuisine, valued at over 3 billion pounds*. The choice available at foodhalls allows consumers to pick and choose from different options all over Asia such as Malaysian, Japanese and Korean. This was our reasoning too as we wanted as many options as possible.
Fortunately, we arrived early for lunch and were able to scope out every stand before the crowds arrived, giving us a chance to plan our meals. That approach was abandoned very early on as every new stand we ventured to made my mouth water and my list of what I wanted to try got longer!
Once all our orders were placed we sat patiently waiting for the beeper discs to go off. Out of our group of four the other three buzzers went off and everyone collected their food and I was starting to get envious of their great choices – vegetable tempura that was lightly battered, a delicious pork bun and my husband’s favourite dish – BBQ Korean Chicken.
Then finally my buzzer went! I came back to the table with a plateful of 12 pork and mushroom gyozas. Freshly prepared, the dumplings had been delicately fried together creating a crispy wing effect. With just one bite I knew I had made the right choice. In fact, it led to my husband’s cousin going back up to order more!
On our second trip to order we went for soup dumplings. Each containing a small amount of soup around the perfectly seasoned chicken filling, they tasted amazing – although a little messy to eat!
With just enough room for main, I ordered the roast pork and rice from a stand which offered an incredible display of meats. I pointed to the one I would like and they sliced it up and served it with sticky rice. It was just what I needed after the rich dumplings!
There is always space for dessert, especially when it provides the chance to try something new. Arriving at our table in paper cups were rolled up fresh egg waffles. Popular in Hong Kong, these waffles are made with an egg batter that is cooked between two waffle irons full of circles, making them look like bubble wrap when cooked. Very light to eat, they were a wonderful way to finish off our first trip to Bang Bang Oriental Foodhall.
I am sure this will be one of many visits and next time I will make it to the other side of the room where a selection of ramen is waiting to be tried!
*Sources: Essential Cuisine and Zest Quest Asia 2015