: By Neil Robinson
Yangzi Jiang, a Cantonese restaurant that pleases by variety
cuisine is known for the use of fresh ingredients,
particularly fresh seafood and a wide range of meats. Spices
are commonly used sparingly, and sauces are usually light
compared with other Chinese cuisines, in order not to
obscure the flavours of the main ingredients. The delicate
flavours can be very pleasing, but those accustomed to the
more robust flavours of Thai food may find the food a bit
Yangzi Jiang is a bit different. The large menu includes not
only traditional dishes, but also some quite spicy ones,
particularly on their Cantonese home style menu. I dined
there recently with a group of ten people, both Thai and
farang. This was my second meal there, since first trying it
last month. With a large group, and everyone ordering
different dishes, I got to sample some items that I might
not otherwise have thought of trying. The inevitable result
is that I found a few dishes that seemed to me less
successful. More important, I found quite a number that
pleased me, and a few new favourite dishes.
Two, in particular, of the dishes stood out as really
pleasing everyone - we ended up ordering multiple plates of
each. These were the roasted pork neck with honey (140 baht
for a small plate, and 280 baht for a generously large
plate) and the sauteed string beans with minced pork and XO
chili sauce (120 Baht). The roast meat had a good, clear,
but not overly strong pork flavour and a fine tender
texture. It was served on a bed of what appeared to be
lentils, and which were firm enough to be almost crunchy.
The string beans, from the Cantonese home style menu, were
nice and firm, in an appetizing spicy meat sauce.
Another example of a dish that pleased me was the stewed
eggplant, again from the Cantonese home style menu, and
again with a spicy minced pork sauce (120 baht). A couple of
dishes that seemed less successful were the hot and sour
soup (85 baht per person), which was not hot enough for my
taste, and the Yunnan style sliced chicken (130 baht small,
260 baht large), which I found a bit fatty. One or two
dishes really divided opinion. The best example of this was
a sour bamboo dish. Some really loved its strong flavour.
Others found it not to their taste. We took a vote and the
split was exactly 50/50. Tastes obviously vary and the
advantage of the variety of dishes offered here is that you
can find something to please your particular palate.
I sampled three desserts: lemon sorbet, rum raisin ice cream
and a deep fried pancake with banana and mashed dates.
Again, I found a couple which I really liked, but one
unsuccessful item. The pancake, which I am told is
traditional in Hong Kong, was delicious, sweet, fruity and
crispy. I also liked the refreshing sorbet. The rum raisin
ice cream, on the other hand, gave the impression of being
almost dry, if you can imagine that in an ice cream.
The restaurant building is in an attractive oriental style.
I hope you can see how nice it is from the photograph. There
is ample parking. We ate in a spacious upstairs room, and
were attentively waited on. The cost per person was 440
baht, including water, but not alcoholic drinks. This seemed
very reasonable in view of the amount we ordered and the
quality of the food. We brought our own wine - another nice
thing about Yangzi Jiang is that they are happy for you to
do this and do not charge corkage.
Their address is 10 Nimmanhaeminda, Soi 5, within walking
distance of the Rincome. Tel: 053 225 313.
I’d like to hear from you on your experience of this
restaurant. Please contact me at: [email protected]
Next week we will go from Canton to France, to try the
restaurant that many think offers the best European food in
Chiang Mai. Then, the week after, it’s back to northern
Thailand and the announcement of a new leader in the race
for best khao soi. I hope also to include readers’
recommendations for khao soi places, so please let me know
your favourite and why you think it is one of the best.
Chicken Cordon Bleu
Chicken “cordon bleu” is a simple, yet
satisfying dish for both the cook and the diners. “Cordon bleu” is from L’Ordre
des Chevaliers du Saint Esprit, a 1578 AD elite group of French knights.
Apparently the group became known for their extravagant and luxurious banquets,
known as “cordon bleu” (blue ribbon).
Flatten chicken breasts with the heel of your hand. Wrap a
slice of ham around a piece of cheese about 5 cm long and 0.5 cm wide and then
wrap the chicken breast around the ham and cheese.
Dip the breasts in flour, then in the egg wash (the beaten egg in 100 ml milk)
and then in finely crushed bread crumbs. Brown in hot oil about 4 minutes a
Finish the chicken cordon bleu in the microwave on medium for around one minute
to ensure the cheese has melted.
Skinless, boneless chicken breasts 4
Cream of chicken soup
All-purpose whipping cream 500 ml
Mix together and stir constantly over stove on low heat. When sauce is
hot, pour into dish to be served over the chicken cordon bleu.