Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Vegetarian Lunch at Po Lin Monastery
I love weekends.
(Who the heck doesn't? Oh, maybe those who have to work on weekends, and do not exactly enjoy their job).
It's when I can be lazy...
Do absolutely nothing...
Such as my last weekend's trip to the Big Buddha and Po Lin Monastery.
It's a place for worship...
...and when you're hungry from that hike up and down the stairs to the big Buddha...(not to mention bending over backwards trying to shoot good pictures), you can always go to...
Po Lin Monastery's Vegetarian Restaurant
On a perfect 26C, sunny autumn days...you can dine outside and enjoy the scenery...
If you're an air-con fanatic, dine inside.
They started the meal with a soup of winter melon, vegetables and burdock. Very subtly flavored.
One of my favorite dishes of the day...sweet corn and green peas with tofu. Naturally yummy.
This one's baby bok choy, mushrooms, mock meat made of gluten and tofu, with creamy sesame sauce. Deliciously creamy.
Cucumber, celery, carrot, and yellow bell pepper with mock meat made of tofu. Taste absolutely fresh.
Crispy vegetarian rolls. I love anything deep fried, so this was one of the highest highlights of the day.
Fresh shitake on vegetables.
Every dish served taste really subtle, mostly with a shiny corn starch finish, with absolutely no hint of aromatics and spices. Apparently, anything that pleases the palate are forbidden in Buddhism. It's eat-to-live as oppose to live-to-eat, I guess? Can you imagine cooking without garlic, shallot, and all of the wonderful fragrance we normally use? Considering this fact, the dishes weren't as bad as I imagined them to be, they were even delicious, as we were super starved from all the hiking.
The whole experience isn't only about food.
Everything taught us something, including this napkin holder...
....and the toothpick holder....and if that's not enough...
A whole rack of free Buddhism books for you to take home.
As a human being in this vast universe...I feel curious to know what to people bring to the Gods, apart from the usual oranges, apples and pomelo combo...
and of course...CHOCOLATE!
The Big Buddha and Po Lin Monastery
Check out how to get there, etc here
Lunch costs HK$60 per person