Dumplings in Chengdu
I realize that this is probably hopeless, but...
I was in China in 2005 and I went to a restaurant/idner where I was served a ten-course meal. One of the courses was steamed meat dumplings in a spicy, addictive sauce. They were absolutely amazing. Fortunately a couple of other Westerners at my table couldn't handle the heat (it was our first meal in Sichuan) and I got to eat theirs, too. These were, without a doubt, the most delicious thing I had on my 17-day trip around China.
Does anyone know what they could be called? I really want to try to find them in Vancouver, Canada.
(I don't know the name of the restaurant, either. I know that it was in the same block as the Philharmonic Hotel, which was owned by the Sichuan Conservatory of Music.)
I just read another Chengdu post and I think that these are the dumplings.
Most Sichuan-style restaurants will have a version of this dish, called something like "dumplings in chili oil" (usually in the appetizers section of the menu). It's a simple dish, just conventional "shui jiao" dumplings or sometimes wontons served in a dish of very spicy chili oil or sauce.
Are you certain they were steamed? Shui jiao and chao shou are both boiled. The pictured ones are definitely the wonton type - hong2 you2 chao1 shou3 红油抄手. (chao shou are wontons in sichuan language).
Did a blog post on chao shou not too long ago:
Nice blog, thanks.
For the record, although shui jiao (as the name implies) are usually boiled, a
steamed version of a similar dumpling can sometimes be found, like the ones in this picture:
I've encountered them myself in Shanghai. I've never encountered steamed wontons, though.
I am not sure that they were steamed. I just meant that they were served hot, not cold.
Can I ask, Pepper_mil, are Ants climbing a tree the same as the Chengdu Tantan noodles? I had so much food there, I forget a lot of it. Tantan noodles here seem to be noodles covered in peanut sauce, which is so wrong.
Yes, I think that is a more correct name for them. I meant the noodles in that dish are made from bean starch = dou fen, in Mandarin. Locally we say 'fer' for 'fen' and the term can also mean noodles themselves (like some varieties of the cold seasoned type), but I am not sure if you can use it in this case.