For a fun treat on a cold night, take a wander through Chinatown and see if you can dodge the spruikers and spot the little window sandwiched between Emperor’s Garden Restaurant and Emperor’s Garden Cakes and Bakery. Despite the Hay Street address, you enter it from the Dixon Street pedestrian mall.
It should have a bright yellow sign saying Emperor’s Puff.
Join the queue and wait for your turn at the window where you can watch the machine clinking and clacking its way through making your order. Emperor’s Puffs ($5/18) are about the best way you can spend thirty-five cents, though most buyers opt for paper bags of three (for a buck) or containers of eighteen (for five bucks).
Don’t come expecting something highbrow or gourmet – this is a simple doughy snack filled with custard. The outside eats like a crisp, savoury pancake. What I liked about them is they aren’t overly sweet. They’re best eaten hot, but buyer beware… coming straight off their quaint cream puff machine, their custard innards can be scorching!
Emperor's Garden Cakes & Bakery
100 Hay Street, Haymarket (enter Dixon Street)
Ph: (02) 9211 2135