Good Shanghai Dumplings 上海小籠包 should be freshly made. Some restaurants are so proud of their dumplings that they let their customers watch how their dumplings are made. It is great theatre! The video clip above shows how chefs in Din Tai Fung (Hong Kong, 1 Michelin Star) made their special black truffle dumplings (黑松露小籠包) as a team. The chef closest to the camera made the ‘skin’ (pastry) by rolling a small dough flat. He then passed it to the second chef who put the special meat filling in. Black truffle was added by the third chef and the dumpling was sealed and put in the bamboo steamer by the last chef. The dumpling was weighed twice throughout the process to make sure that the correct amount of special meat filling (first weighing) and black truffle (second weighing) was added. Great precision! I did not get tired watching it as the rhythm and level of coordination was amazing!
Unlike Dumplings Legend, Din Tai Fung‘s Shanghai dumplings are carefully placed in the bamboo steamer to ensure that each dumpling has sufficient space in between. In addition, the steamer was lined with a piece of fabric. This further minimises any chance of accidental tearing of skin.
We tried the classic dumpling with crab meat (蟹粉小籠包). It was amazing! Special fat of hairy crab are added to the classic pork dumplings. They tasted as good as they looked! The broth inside was rich in flavour. If it was not for the photo, I would have put the whole dumpling in my mouth in one go and let it ‘burst’ inside- the ultimate indulgence!