On the shelf
The Japanese make many wonderful products with yuzu, a citrus fruit that has a thick, distinctive-tasting peel and little juice. My latest find is freeze-dried yuzu powder (HK$23 for 45 grams at TFH Super, Tung Lam Mansion, 43 Third Street, Sai Ying Pun, tel: 2548 5333). I like to mix it with a bit of fine-grained sea salt and sprinkle it over grilled beef and roast chicken.
I'm not sure I'd buy Tartuf Langhe porcini and truffle tagliatelle again, even though it was delicious - at HK$145 for 250 grams, it seems expensive. The instructions on the box of semolina and egg pasta flavoured with porcini and summer black truffle suggest serving it with cream, grated parmesan, butter and salt. The black truffle flavour is quite subtle and you could get similar flavours - at a cheaper price - by adding dried porcini (soaked in warm water until soft) and a microscopic amount of black truffle oil to the sauce, and serving it with plain pasta. It's available at City'super (Times Square, Causeway Bay, tel: 2506 2888).
Friends living in the United States told me about 'Chicago mix' - an unlikely sounding combination of caramel corn and cheesy popped corn - but I figured I'd have to go to the Windy City to taste the sweet-savoury mix. However, while trawling the shelves of ParknShop International in United Centre (Admiralty, tel: 2861 0850), I spotted GH Cretors Chicago Mix ('since 1885') popcorn and bought a bag, despite its price (HK$48 for 184 grams). My friend and I almost ate the entire bag before we were able to stop ourselves. Actually, we should have just finished the bag because the remaining cheesy popcorn was soft when we returned to it a few days later. The caramel corn remained crunchy, though, and we'll stick to that the next time we buy a bag (the two flavours can be bought separately).