Food and Culture

Chinese Dim Sum

Dim sum is an array of different Chinese dishes generally served at restaurants as part of lunch and dinner. Dim sum served in Chinese restaurants is typically made from seafood such as oysters, squid, and shrimp. The word “dim sum” actually means “dumpling.” Most dim sum dishes are typically from Guangzhou, China, but Cantonese and Taiwanese have also developed their own dim sum recipes.

One of the most popular dim sum varieties is chicken feet. Chicken feet are chicken feet that have been cut up into small pieces, usually around four to six inches in size. A variety of different herbs and vegetables are used to make the broth for this dish including ginger, soy sauce, cornstarch, chicken stock, soy fluid, rice wine, sesame oil, and scallions. Most chefs add white pepper, cloves, and garlic to the mix for more taste.

Other popular dim sum fillings include such foods as lobster, beef, pork, shrimp, scallops, mussels, and crab meat. These fillings can be used in a number of different ways, depending on the recipe and the cook’s individual preference. Some versions of dim sum even use crab meat and cook it down in a stock to create a stock for other Chinese dishes. Dim sum food can also be served plain or with a sweet sauce. A few restaurants will serve dim sum with a variety of Chinese condiments on the side. These restaurants specialize in specializing in dim sum, so it is best to find one of these restaurants while traveling in China.