For the next installment in our Mother’s Day recipe series – where five chefs from Hong Kong share their moments with mom as well as simple, nostalgic dishes that make them think of her – we chat with Tiffany Lo from the neighborhood French bistro. . Jean May.
Did your mom inspire your love of cooking?
My mom undoubtedly inspired my love for cooking. We could feel my mom’s love with the effort she put into planning our family meals. She used fresh, seasonal ingredients, prepared and cooked with the utmost care, love and a pinch of OCD. This act of love resulted in the most delicious and heartfelt dishes that inspired me to cook.
What are your earliest memories of cooking?
As a child, I never saw myself as a cook. I enjoyed spending time with my mom in the kitchen. I loved helping her here and there, but I was very clumsy. So my family’s previous memories of me cooking are some unforgettable accidents that caused a bit of stressful screaming and laughter at the same time. Being in the kitchen with my mom, watching her, enjoying the aromas, stirring the pans while chatting with her and my siblings was an intimate family affair.
Tiffany Lo and her brother, Ramon, in front of Jean May
What is your favorite dish cooked by your mother?
It’s hard to choose. I have a few favorites, but the one that my siblings and I often ask for is my mom’s Shanghainese Fried Rice Cake. My mother is half Shanghainese and my late grandmother [whose name is used for Jean May] used to cook this dish too. It is one of the most delicious and comforting dishes for me. It reminds me of family reunions and the love and laughter we all shared.
What’s the best cooking advice you got from her?
Use good quality, seasonal ingredients to taste. She has her own methods and techniques for making her sauces and soups and I’ve learned a few things here and there. She is also always looking for ways to improve every dish she cooks, inspiring me to always look for improvements in everything I do.
French bistro-style cuisine at Jean May
Where would you take your mom for Mother’s Day in Hong Kong?
I love having meals with my mom, whether it’s with the family or just the two of us. While we love many different types of food, from street snacks, fun cheung and wonton noodles, to more luxurious sit down meals, we also love going out for sushi or a great meal at Chef Shane Osbourne. Esoteric or chef Raphael Duntoye LPM.
Share with us a memory of your mom and a message for her.
We took this photo (top image) at Jean May’s in front of my grandmother’s photo. I can’t thank my mom enough for her unconditional love and everything she has done for me, especially since I opened the restaurant. I am very grateful to be his daughter and just want to say thank you and love you so much! Also, to apologize to her for all the worries I caused her.
Shanghai Fried Rice Cake
For 3 to 4 people
8pcs Shanghai rice cakes (not the pre-cut type, packed)
5pcs shiitake mushrooms (big)
2 bamboo shoots all winter
200g grated lean pork
1 whole Tientsin cabbage (small)
- Soak the rice cake in water for two hours and slice it thinly (about 2mm thick).
- Wash and soak the mushrooms for a few hours and cut them into thin slices. Keep the water from the mushrooms.
- Finely shred (2 mm) the bamboo shoot.
- Finely grate the pork (about 3 mm) and marinate with black soy, wine, sugar and white pepper.
- Slice the cabbage into half-inch pieces, separate the stems and leaves.
- Sauté mushrooms in preheated cooking oil until cooked over low to medium heat.
- Add the bamboo shoots until cooked.
- Remove from heat and strain the mixture through a colander.
- In a pan, heat the oil and once hot, add the pork and sauté.
- When the pork is cooked, drizzle the cooking wine in circles around the pork for three to four turns. Sauté quickly, then remove from the heat and add it to the mushroom mixture.
- First fry the cabbage stems until they are half cooked, then add the leaves and three tablespoons of black soybeans. Fry until evenly cooked.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well, then add the mushroom water and let it boil. Taste and adjust the seasoning according to your preferences.
- When boiling, lay out the ingredients to line the bottom half of the wok and spread the rice cake slices in the spread. Cover and cook over medium-high heat for five minutes. Remove the lid and sauté quickly until well combined. Use immediately.
For more Mother’s Day recipes, check out Ho Lee Fook’s Jowett Yu Pork and Cabbage Dumplings.