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Dim sum and Jade Asian... need some help

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OK, so I've settled on Jade Asian for Dim Sum. Here's the thing: I've never had Dim Sum. What's the story with it? Is it only available on certain days or times of day? What are the good dishes? We have vegetarian going and one other who doesn't really eat seafood at all (me). We are also slpit 50/50 on spicy food. Not even sure if that would be an issue, but I figured I'd mention it.

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  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dim_sum

    Most places only serve dim sum during breakfast and early lunch hours, which is traditional.

    If you are vegetarian, things will be rough. Pretty much everything contains shrimp and/or pork fat, even vegetable pastries. You can get by with eating steamed vegetables, egg tarts, and mango pudding, but you'll miss out on roughly 95% of the stuff.

    Nothing is spicy, though there is chili sauce and/or oil available to adjust to your preferences.

    1. Days: depends on the restaurant, but at Jade Asian it will be everyday
      Times: its generally a morning time thing, so try to get there at 11-12 and you'll be fine. If you get there too late alot of times the stuff isn't fresh anymore
      Good dishes: this is a longer answer. For vegetarian, there will be certain things they can eat, but it'll be maybe 25% of the food. No seafood is doable although you'll be missing alot of the best dishes. As far as spicy goes, nothing will be spicy even if it is supposedly spicy b/c cantonese food is basically never spicy for the most part.

      here is a list of the the generally very common / classic dishes, im going to give you the names in chinese b/c i dont know what they are called in english and try to describe them to you:
      - ha gow - steamed shrimp dumpings
      - siu mai - steamed pork dumplings
      - cha siu bao - a pork bun that is either steamed or baked
      - cheung fan - a rice roll that is filled with a meat usually either beef or shrimp, but can be other things like roasted pork etc
      - zha liang - this is a you tiao (fried crueller aka a long donut) that is wrapped with a rice roll and they put a sauce on the side
      - lo bat go - this is a white fried cake made up of mashed daikon (a root) that has pieces of chinese ham and scallions in it and they give you a sort of sweet sauce on the side
      - pai kuat - these are chopped up pieces of spare rib in a black bean sauce
      - fung jow - these are fried chicken feet put into a slightly spicy sauce
      - dat tat - baked custard tarts

      here's a link to yelp that has pics of alot of food: http://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/aT4MQU...

      aside from that there will be tons and tons of dishes i didn't mention, i suggest just trying them. english maybe a slight problem with some of the waiters, but i think you should generally be fine

      1. Dim sum is not made with vegetarians, people on low cholesterol diets, or people who do not eat seafood in mind since pork and shrimp are the primary staples and meat broths are all over the place. Not positive about Jade Asian, but most all dim sum restaurants will also let you order off the menu at lunch time. Consequently one possibility is a combination of dim sum and regular items, if you don't mind non-dim sum eaters watching the dim sum eaters. This is a solution I've used in the past.

        1. You will be able to find enough things to eat but the vegetarian is going to have a rough time. We sometimes go out to dim sum with DH and his family. DH's brother-in-law is a vegetarian and he generally orders some vegetable tofu dish from the regular menu. Even the dim sum dishes that look vegetarian (savory as opposed to dessert) will probably have some pork fat in it. And I believe even the egg tarts have lard in the pastry.