I was fortunate enough to get to audition to host a new major network food show the other day. They asked me to bring in one of my favorite regional or ethnic foods and be ready to explain it. So I picked up a steamed pork bun from Mei Li Wah, which used to be a dim and dirty old school NY Chinatown coffee shop (see before and after pics here on SeriousEats). Once shut down by the Health Department, it’s now renovated, brightly-lit and clean.
Now the problem is that I ended up eating that steamed pork bun. So I ran around to find another over at Fay Da Bakery on Mott St. As a result, I was almost late to the audition and risked my future as a Food TV star. That’s like the time I missed my plane because I was trying to find Chick-fil-A at the Atlanta International Airport.
There’s quite a difference in appearance and taste in the pork buns from Mei Li Wah and Fay Da. The latter looks closer to the ones my aunts made when I was little. The filling is more red and sweeter than the Mei Li Wah buns. But as far as the texture of the (brown) pork meat, I can understand why Mei Li Wah is a favorite among many.
I think the audition went swell. I didn’t fuck it up by being too weird or anything and importantly I trusted in my hair.