Friday, February 27, 2009

Dim sum dishes at home

In January, when I was home in NYC for winter break, my parents went over some of the dishes they wanted to cook while I was home: beef noodle soup, turnip and taro cake, and sticky rice. Unfortunately, I was running around so much that I was rarely home while they were. So it wasn't until near the end of vacation, after I got back from Montreal, that I was able to be home while my parents were cooking.
It was worth the wait. My mom's turnip cake is studded with bits of Chinese sausage, pork, dried shrimp, and shallots and full of turnip flavor. The taro version is tender but chunkier than the turnip one, and both share the same rustic quality that one day I'm determined to replicate. We pan-fried slices of both cakes with a minimum of oil, so they didn't get as crisp on the outside as I might have liked, but the decrease in fat and calories is worth the trade, I think.
The sticky rice, too, was delicious; each grain was perfectly chewy and imbued with flavor. If this kind of grain wasn't so difficult to digest, I would have have more than just a bowlful. I'll have to learn how to make this dish here in Colorado, once I get my hands on some sweet rice.


  1. GOD I wish my parents/mom would make dim sum. She has been in America too long (well, your parents probably have been here around the same amount of time) - so lazy and unwilling to cook Chinese food anymore! CRY :(
    PS If you ever want me to send you stuff, I've been hitting the Asian market once a week, some of the stuff you'll have to walk me through what it looks like though lol

  2. My folks mostly cook Chinese food…it's the kids (me and my brother) who end up making the non-Chinese food for them. Luckily, they're always open to new tastes!

    I plan on hitting up the HMart in Denver next week (when I have a rental car at my disposal) so I should be okay for a while. But thanks! I will definitely think of you in moments of Asian grocery desperation. Um, can you mail me a banh mi? ;P

  3. My mom doesn't cook anymore. She never cooked super Chinese food though - like the above steamed turnip cakes, or any dim sum dishes, or lobster stir fried with scallions... she made lots of noodles or meat/veggie dishes to eat with rice, but nothing I would say you could order in a restaurant, if that makes sense. My brother and sister will probably correct me but by the time they got to raising me, it was all McDonald's, spaghetti, Red Lobster, American food, which explains why I eat the way I do :)

    Hahahaha awesome about Hmart... do you think if I freeze bahn mi and put some ice packs in there it'll last? Hahahaha

  4. I bet I end up cooking like your mom when I get older…the real stuff is so time consuming! :)