Monday, 1 September 2014

Grain Express

Hello Fellow Nom Seekers!

Grain Express is situated in the Centro Box Hill's food court and it straddles the divide between yum cha in a restaurant (sit down meal with waiters, trolleys and all) to food court (grab and go).  It is the busiest shop front in the Centro food court complex and I'm guessing it's popular because a) you get fairly decent yum cha offerings and made to order noodles without having to wait too long b) being very informal dining, it attracts the large groups which otherwise would be be split to fit onto standard tables in a restaurant.  Often you would see large gatherings of pensioners or families with young children rearranging the tables and seats in the food court dining area to suit.  

As mentioned there is the usual yum cha fare already steamed and ready to go eg: assorted dumplings, fried entrees, buns.  They also do a made to order noodles and rice dishes.  Here is an idea of what they have which we ordered over several occasions both as a take away and also to have there:  

Fried Kway Teow
This didn't really taste like an authentic fried kway teow one would get at a hawker stall - it's more of an Hong Kong style stir fried rice noodles but it tasted ok.

Curry Laksa
Like the Fried Kway Teow, this did not really taste like an authentic laksa but as a noodle dish, it had plenty of chicken and vegetables and tasted ok.  I wouldn't order this if you are after an original laksa experience.

Century old egg and pork congee with Chinese donut
This they do well.  The congee is a creamy texture with a fair amount of century old egg.  And who does not like a fried savoury donut to dunk in?

BBQ pork puff and custard egg tart
Their custard egg tarts are just as good as a restaurants.  Which is a dangerous thing because it is all too easy to order a plate or two, or three...

Fried calamari 
 The fried calamari are a bit of hit and miss.  Whilst anything deep fried is delicious in my book and calamari at that, the tentacles can sometimes be a bit chewy.  On the up side, you get a good jaw workout.

Fried prawn wantons
These fried prawn wantons along with the custard egg tarts are my pick of bunch.  The wantons are chock full of prawn mince and being deep fried, makes it even more moreish.

Grain Express - yes it's in a food court but if you can get over that fact, it does fairly good yum cha offerings for those in a rush or wanting very very informal dining.  I would not recommend their take on traditional hawker stall food eg laksas, fried kway teow, etc as there are plenty of other places which can do it better.  However Grain Express' congee, dumplings and custard egg tarts are pretty decent.

Grain Express on Urbanspoon

Until next time...

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