Upon a friend’s recommendation, I have begun to search out what is commonly known as steamed soup dumplings or xiao long bao.

This is in addition to things like good won ton soup, short ribs, St. Louis style ribs, burritos, ramen noodles, wu tao kau yuk (Chinese braised pork belly with taro), and fried chicken.

And though I am an ambitious cook (my brother and I team up to make a turducken during the holidays), it might be awhile before I try making this myself.  The making of the gelatin soup is a bit lengthy according to this recipe.  Like many people, I like dumpling-like food, whether it be won tons, jiaozi/potstickers, gyoza, shiu mai.  It appears that xiao long bao is the most complex.  When you realize how much work goes into making it, you appreciate it more.

Just yesterday I had xiao long bao from Lao Shanghai, the only place I had ever had it.  When I heard that another friend craves them, I decided to look for other examples.  My friends that know their Chinese food say Tamarind makes good xiao long bao, and I agree.  The skin was slightly thinner or more delicate, and the pork had a better flavor, with a stronger hint of ginger.  I was also happy to see they have hamachi kama on the menu (also pictured).

Ed’s Potsticker House supposedly has good ones, and then so do places in New York (Joe’s Shanghai, Peking Duck House).  Of course, I will seek them out when I go to Shanghai.


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