restaurants

FOOD: DIM SUM DISHES (PART 2)

Dim Sum Food 5

It´s time for Dim Sum Dishes Part 2! If you haven´t read the first part yet (with more explanation about Dim Sum and the 7 first dishes), click here.

Today 4 new dishes to read about:

Dim Sum food 4 Dim Sum Food 3

Custard bun 奶黃包 (nǎihuáng bāo)
These buns are filled with a mix of butter, eggs and custard, instantly reminding me of good days in Singapore or Taiwan when I’m eating them. Also a good dim sum dish for friends  to start, who haven’t eaten dim sum before.

Dim Sum Food 2

Deep fried shrimp dumplings   水饺 (Sui Kau)
This is also a typical Cantonese Dim Sum dish, the dumplings can be deep-fried als you can see here but also cooked and served with soup. I love dumplings most when they are served with noodle soup or pan fried. The dumplings are filled with shrimps, meat, bamboo and other vegetables.

Dim Sum Food 6

Beef shu mai dumplings  牛焼売 (xíu mại)
These shu mai dumplings were already served during the Qing Dynasty and there are various ways to make shu mai dumplings. This variant is the beef shu mai and they are steamed in bamboo baskets before served. A good alternative when you don’t want to eat the original shu mai with pork.

Dim Sum Food 1

Steamed chicken and shiitake buns 鸡仔包
Shiitake is a type of mushroom and combined with chicken in a soft white bun, It will taste delicious! These buns are actually easy to make, as long as you have the right flour to use. If you use the regular flour from the supermarket, the bun itself won’t have the same soft texture and will turn out to be more yellowish instead of white.

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Food: Dim Sum Dishes (part 1)

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Dim Sum (點心) are small Chinese dishes that you could eat in the afternoon. It doesn’t really matter which time in the afternoon you start and drink Chinese tea while eating. A lot of the dishes are from the Cantonese Kitchen and that’s why we call Dim Sum,  Yum Cha as well, which is the Cantonese pronunciation. Literally it means: Drinking Tea. I like to compare  Dim Sum with the British High Tea (also tea with good food) and Tapas (a lot of yummy food). A lot of the dishes are steamed in bamboo baskets.

When I was little I rather drink Cola during Dim Sum, but my mum always insisted that I should drink the healthy tea instead. She would say that drinking this tea would ensure me a smooth skin, so I gladly drink the tea instead of the cola. Actually my mum always did this when I didn’t want to eat or drink something and it helped on short term, because I thought having a smooth skin was important (also as an 8-year old). And the long term effect is that I’m grateful that she pushed me eating and trying new food and drinks. Now I love to eat food from different cultures and trying everything new instead of sticking to the same food the rest of my life.

But let’s get back to why we drink tea with Dim Sum:  This tradition is so old, travelers used to go to Teahouses during their travel on the Silk Road. When people discovered that tea was good for digestion, teahouses offered a lot of different snacks to eat while drinking tea! Tea that are mostly served are: Chrysanthemum tea, Green tea, Oolong Tea and Bo-lei tea.

Because there are so many dishes for Dim Sum, I thought it would be fun to write about some of them now and then. The first seven dished I’ve consumed yesterday will be the first on the list:

dimsum collage

First from left: Radish Cake 蘿蔔糕 (Lo Baak Gou)
Radish Cake is on top of my list when I’m ordering from Dim Sum courts. I love the mix of shredded radish and rice flour. The cake is cut into squares and in Singapore we call this dish Carrot Cake. The difference between the Cantonese variant and the Singaporean one is that in Singapore most of the time the pan fried cake has been cut in small pieces instead of the bigger square. I would like to put a recipe for this radish cake on the blog when I’m trying to make one of these!

Middle:  Zhaliang 炸兩
I eat a lot of youtiao, which is fried dough in Sout East Asia. This dim sum dish is also the same fried dough but with a layer of rice noodle roll around it. Served with soy sauce, we almost never skip this dish during Dim Sum.

Right: Fried pastry with porkmeat inside
Children especially love this dish, simple but tasty, don’t have much more to add on this one.

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Xiao Long Bao 小籠包
Steamed little buns with minced crabmeat and soup inside. They are a kind of dumplings but because there is soup inside, you need to slowly bite a small piece out of the dumpling and suck the soup out of it! Doesn’t sound that attractive right, but just try it!

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Rice noodle rolls 豬腸粉 (chee cheong fun)
We call this dish normally ha cheung, most of the time we eat this with shrimps and roasted pork meat. Can’t skip this dish neither,  the thin rolls are made of rice noodles and it will be tastier when the soy souce is  poured over the rolls.

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Beef stomach: 牛肚 (Niudu)
Beef stomach is smooth and a bit tough to eat sometimes, but prepared in a dim sum dish, the stomach is cut in tiny pieces and easy to consume. There’s always someone in the group during Dim Sum who is going to order this dish, but personally I don’t eat it that much.

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Fried Shrimp and mango rolls
I never eaten this dish in other Dim Sum restaurants… but when I saw this was offered the first time, I defintely wanted to try it. The mix of mango and shrimp is a good one, I can recommend this dish whenever you are in restaurants which serve the mango+shrimp dish.

This was Dim Sum Dishes Part 1, hope it was useful 🙂

Little Buddha Restaurant and Lounge

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I went to eat at Little Buddha this weekend. Little Buddha is an Asian fusion Restaurant and Lounge located in the touristic party hotspot Leidseplein.

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We had the All-you-can-eat buffet. You can choose out of 2 soups, 2 sushi plates with either containing 10 sushi’s, the fish of the day, orange chicken, Mongolian beef, egg rolls, steamed rice, noodles and mixed vegetables. My first order was the egg rolls served with sweet chili sauce and the fish of the day, which was cod. The egg rolls were okay, not good because it contained coriander, which does not resemble the authentic Asian egg roll recipe. The cod was tender and the sauce spicy. For my second course, I ordered the Nigiri and Maki rolls platter. These tasted very good and the fish was fresh. Afterwards, I had the orange chicken with the noodles and coconut soup. The orange chicken tasted very good. It is actually my favorite at Little Buddha. I even make it at home sometimes. It’s very delicious and easy to make. The noodles tasted good. For dessert, I had the pineapple cheesecake. I could not taste the pineapple; nevertheless it was a great ending of a fun meal.

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Dining at Little Buddha is a nice experience. The decoration is beautiful, the music not loud and relaxing. Does it have the best food in town? Probably not. It is a good place to have some cocktails (cost around 13 euros) with friends before going out or a small gathering or just making beautiful pictures. The one weak spot of Little Buddha is the service. Though the waiters and waitresses were very friendly, but sometimes our orders were given twice and do not expect to get out quickly as it took us 15 minutes to get our bill and another 15 to get our money back.

Overall, it was a nice experience. Definitely worth seeing in Amsterdam.

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