Monday, September 11, 2006

Soupy Buns for the Soul

It is touted as THE place to have Xiao Long Baos and it was even reported in the media that you have not visited Taiwan till you've visited Din Tai Fang for their XLBs.

Back in Singapore, the queues forming outside Din Tai Fang is testament to their fame. They even have an electronic queuing system to issue Q-numbers to their waiting patrons. I have never queued for their XLBs. However I could see through their see-through kitchen, their chefs huddling in groups, frantically pleating 'exactly 18 folds' into each XLB. '18 folds', that is their 'exact standard' to be precise.

To me, a Xiao Long Bao is a Xiao Long Bao whether 'exactly 18 folds' or not. The important thing is that the soup within each bao must squish out at the first bite and that the skin must not tear when you lift each bao with a pair of chopsticks.

My baos may not look as pretty as DTF's 18 fold XLB but hey, they still flooded my mouth with fragrant soup at the first bite and the skin did not break when the bao was lifted with a pair of chopsticks (yeah yeah okay, so my bao skin is a little thicker than DTF's! Happy?). Served with julienne ginger in black vinegar, my baos actually tasted very good! Slurp.

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From XLBs to radish kueh (cakes). Did you know that ready steamed yam cakes or radish cakes are now available from the supermarkets? They are vacumn packed and sold in rolls that looks like a neck roll. For S$2.30, you can fry enough to feed your family and also your neighbours to your left and right. DH bought a humongous roll yesterday and then deftly whipped up a fried dish of fragrant, slightly spicy radish cake. Besides adding chye poh, eggs, fresh juicy prawns and silver sprouts (head & tailed beansprouts), he also added ground flounder fish which gave an extra kick to the dish. We would have loved it to be more eggy but then realised too late, that there was only one egg left in the fridge.

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15 comments:

lance said...

Hi Rusti,

I'm one of your "silent" readers that's been around for awhile. Love your lup cheong making adventures. Looks like you're getting closer and closer to your satisfaction. Although, to me, your lup cheong looks like the real thing. I was wondering if you wouldn't mind sharing your recipe for your "soupy buns". As I've hear a lot about them, but they're very hard to find here. Much Thanks....

Rusti said...

Hi Lance, Thanks for being my 'silent supporter'. Yup, my lup cheong saga is coming to an end soon. The latest batch, according to one tester, is that the texture has passed it's test. However, as I have already noted, I will need to adjust the 'taste' part. I will try again soon.
For the soupy buns, I am still waiting for permission from the owner of the recipe. Once she okays me, I will post.

evan said...

hi there! i stumbled upon your blog. the stuffs you make/bake are really lovely :) i'm a foodie myself too and its really great to know likeminded ppl.

take care!

Anonymous said...

Care to share your recipe for the XLB ? We're in US and my kids love to eat them but it's so expensive... thanks!

Anonymous said...

hi Rusti.. care to share the recipe for the XLB.. We're in the States and my kids love to eat them.. No DDF here... Thanks!

Jennifer said...

Rusti,

After seeing your delicious carrot cake, reminds me that I have not cook this for a long time..hehe cannot tahan already this weekend must cook some.

Regards,
Jennifer

Rusti said...

Lance & Anoymous. The owner of the XLB recipe wants to test the recipe once more before posting the recipe. Please bear with me. I will definitely have it up here soon.

lance said...

Rusti,

Thank you for spending your time to ask your friend for the XLB recipe. Also, thank you to your friend for been kind to share her/his recipe. Much Mahalos

snowchild said...

Hei Ginny, I read from one of Amelia Liang's cookbook that the key to success in making XLB is the lard jelly, which gives the buns their distinctive flavour. Did you use that with the minced meat mixture to do yours?

Rusti said...

No. I am happy with the meat fillings. It is the skin that needs to be reworked.

sspaks said...

hi Ginny, Ive been checking ever so often ur blog ( since Sept )- when will u be posting this XLB recipe? Hope u havent forgotten all of us thts eagerly n patiently waiting for this recipe. Ur XLB pic looks so delish - soft n juicy, tht i dunno how long more we can endure the torture of waiting to sink out teeth into one delicious XLB!

Rusti said...

Hi Sspaks, sorry to have to let you wait so long. I have not forgotten. It is just that the recipe was not mine to start with. I have already asked the recipe owner for permission but she wanted to modify and retest the recipe. I think she is too busy and have not got round to doing it. I will ask her again. Hang on there ya.

sspaks said...

Thks, Ginny!

Hugbear said...

Hi sspaks, sorry it was not Ginny's fault, it's mine. I told her that I have another recipe for XLB and I wanted to test and see which is better. In the end still find my original recipe better. Have given the greenlight to Ginny to post the recipe liao. Happy trying ok.

sspaks said...

No worries at all - no ones's fault! Im so excited and will defintely try this recipe when Ginny posts the recipe. Thks in advance, Lee Lee and Ginny.