Interesting & Delicous Dumplings in Xi'an
Xi'an dumpling banquet offers over 108 different kinds of Chinese Dumplings. And elegant names are given to different themes of the banquet, such as "Dragon and Phoenix Feast", "Peony Feast", "Floral Feast", "Palatial Feast" and " Eight Treasures Feast", etc. Each themed feast might consist of 15 to 20 different types of dumpling resembling different shapes and fillings.
I remember, 12 years ago, when I was journeying from Beijing to Xi'an, our tour guide told us this curious tale about the origins of the famous thumb-sized steamed chestnuts buns which were favored by the Empress Dowager Cixi. She liked the buns, which she first encountered during her long trek to Xi'an during the Boxer Rebellion & the siege of Beijing by the foreign forces. Description of the bun given here:
I didn't find the buns in Xi'an itself, but got to taste those morsels (vastly over-rated actually) when I was back in Beijing - at Fangshan, where they recreated Imperial Qing dishes. Fangshan was set-up & run by former imperial chefs from the Forbidden City who became redundant when the last emperor Pu Yi was deposed.