Taiwan(China) – Xiao Long Bao


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by Dwi Lias Susanti

Editor Note: Whether Taiwan is an independent country remains controversial

Bubble tea or Boba has become one of the popular drinks in the world. A tea variant drinks with chewy tapioca balls. This kind of beverage has spread all over the world, but is anyone knows that bubble tea originated comes from Taiwan? People start consuming bubble tea in the 1980s in Taichung, Taiwan.

Taiwan is an island country in East Asia, located near the Chinese coast and Southwest Japan. Taiwan has similar culture with the Chinese as it comes from the same ancestor, both in tradition and culinary. In culinary, even it has some similarity in name and shape but Taiwanese food dominated with seafood while Chinese food use beef and pork more frequently. One of Taiwan’s popular food is Xiao Long Bao.

Xiao Long Bao means small bread buckets of juicy dumplings filled with chicken, shrimps, beef, or pork seasoned with ginger sauce. It has a thick ginger taste in every bite, so fresh and delicious. Xiao Long Bao firstly served at Nanxiang in 1875. They mix pork gelatin into dumpling filling then steam it. The steaming process makes the filling melt and taste like a soup. People start to know Xiao Long Bao when the Qianlong emperor (1711) taste the dish, and he likes it. After that, the emperor told everyone about Xiao Long Bao.

The way to cook Xiao Long Bao is challenging. Since it has several step preparations, from making dumpling skin, filling and the sauce. For you who love cooking and want to serve a different dish at home, you can follow the recipe below.

Soup ingredient

  • 500-gram chicken feet
  • ½ onion
  • 1 piece of carrot
  • 3 clove garlic
  • 2 liter of water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper powder

Dumpling skin ingredient

  • 250-gram flour
  • 50 ml of hot water
  • 50 ml of cold water

Filling ingredient

  • 250-gram chicken breast
  • 1 stick onion leaves
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper powder

Sauce ingredient

  • 2 tablespoon apple vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon salty soy sauce
  • 2 cm ginger, thin sliced

Soup preparation

  1. Boil chicken feet with water, boil until the water shrink into 5000 ml.
  2. Add salt and pepper.
  3. Strain and keep in the refrigerator for one hour. Gelatin from chicken feet will make the soup thicken.
  4. Chop the gelatin and place it in a bowl.

Dumpling skin preparation

  1. Mix flour with hot water, pour, and stir slowly.
  2. Add cold water and mix smoothly to make the dough elastic.
  3. Make into a ball shape and set aside.

Filling preparation

  1. Finely chop chicken breast and onion leaves.
  2. Add the soup gelatin.
  3. Mix well all the ingredients.
  4. Place into a medium bowl.

How to make

  1. Cut the dough into 15-gram skin dumpling dough, flatten it into a round shape. Use a circle shape molding to make it easier.
  2. Pick one skin and fill it with a teaspoon filling.
  3. Fold the skin little by little using your thumb. Push continuously until making a small “bag” shape that you’re creating with the dough.
  4. Turn and press the top side to seal the filling.
  5. Prepare a steamer and stem all the dumplings for 10 minutes.
  6. While waiting for the dumpling, prepare the sauce by mix all the ingredients and place it in a medium bowl.
  7. Xiao Long Bao ready to serve while still hot with a side of sauce.
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