Welcome to a new culinary journey at Paulina Cocina! On this journey we are going to explore the wonderful world of dim sum, a great diversity of bites with a lot of flavor and style that oriental gastronomy gives us.

In this note we will explore the universe of this Cantonese creation, from its history and meaning, to the various options that exist to savor, so that you can discover what makes these little delicacies so special. Let’s travel!

What is dim sum?

Before we dive into the history and varieties of this snack, let’s start with the basics. The term “dim sum” literally translates to “touch to the heart” in Chinese and this name couldn’t be more appropriate.Dim sum is not a dish, but a variety of small bites that, as its name suggests, touch the hearts of those who try them.

They are a real feast for the palate, made up of a wide range of small culinary delights, ranging from stuffed dumplings to steamed cakes and spring rolls.

History and origin of Chinese dim sum

The history of this snack dates back to the ancient Silk Road in China. Although there is no absolute consensus on their origin, it is believed that these delicious morsels originated in the tea houses of the Canton region, where travelers and merchants stopped to rest and enjoy a cup of tea.

Thus, tea houses began to serve small snacks to accompany tea, which marked the beginning of the dim sum tradition. As Chinese culture spread around the world, so did dim sum. Today, these snacks are popular across the globe, from North America to Europe.

What type of cuisine is dim sum?

Dim sum is a true reflection of Chinese cuisine, with a strong influence from the Canton region. Flavors are varied and often include combinations of both sweet and savory flavors.

Dim sum is much more than just a meal; It is a unique culinary experience that combines flavors, textures and traditions. From their humble origins in Chinese tea houses to their global popularity, they have conquered the palates and hearts of those seeking an unforgettable dining experience.

What does dim sum have?

A distinctive characteristic of dim sum is its versatility and its ability to adapt to different tastes. Ingredients vary but some common items include pork, shrimp, crab, mushrooms, bamboo, and leafy greens.

The flavors are enhanced with soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil and other traditional Chinese food seasonings. Presentation is also important, as dim sum are usually visually appealing and appetizing.

The types of cooking are also very varied, and can be steamed, grilled, fried or boiled, accompanied with or without broth.

How to prepare dim sum

Dim sum preparation is a masterpiece in itself, and its preparation is a combination of art and science. Each variety requires a specific technique to shape the dough, fill it, close it and cook it.

Ingredients are carefully selected to ensure freshness and quality, resulting in exceptional flavors. Quite an experience to enjoy in a good Chinese or Cantonese restaurant and, why not, to encourage yourself to prepare one of the numerous varieties at home.

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13 different types of Dim Sum

The diversity of dim sum is amazing, since these bites can be enjoyed at various times of the day. Chinese cooks have developed a wide variety of recipes over the years and the choice is almost endless.

Some of the varieties that can be found on the menus of Chinese and dim sum restaurants around the world are:

  1. Siu Mai: These open pork and shrimp dumplings are one of the most iconic dim sum dishes. They are usually garnished with a small amount of fish eggs.
  2. Has Gow: These steamed dumplings are filled with fresh shrimp and are often served in a thin layer of translucent rice dough.
  3. Char Siu Bao: Also known as baozi, they are buns filled with Chinese-style roast pork. The dough is soft and fluffy, and the filling is sweet and sour.
  4. Cheung Fun: These are steamed rice rolls filled with ingredients such as roast pork, shrimp or beef. They are served with a sweet soy sauce.
  5. Xiao Long Bao: Originally from Shanghai, these steamed dumplings are characterized by their hot and juicy broth inside, as well as pork or crab meat.
  6. Gai Lan: These are steamed Chinese broccoli sprouts, seasoned with garlic and sesame oil.
  7. Wu Gok: These are fried cassava rolls filled with pork, mushrooms, and other tasty ingredients. They have a crunchy texture on the outside and a soft filling on the inside.
  8. Taro All: They are crispy fried taro balls that are often filled with pork or shrimp.
  9. Lo Bak Go: The Best Of Lo Bak Go: Also known as radish dumplings, these buns are made with grated radish and steamed before being fried. They are usually served in slices.
  10. Ngao Yuk Cow: These are dumplings filled with beef, often with a touch of ginger and scallion.
  11. Fung Jao: These are rice dough dumplings filled with mushrooms, pork and other seasoned ingredients.
  12. Wonton: These dumplings are filled with pork or shrimp and served in a tasty hot soup.
  13. Fan Tuan: A glutinous rice bun filled with various ingredients, such as egg, pork, and seasonings.
how to make chinese dim sum

Source: www.paulinacocina.net

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