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Yao’s Dragon Beard Candy – A Hard to Find Chinese Candy in Chinatown

Lau Mar 31, 2012 06:16 PM

**For full post and pics**: http://www.lauhound.com/2012/03/yaos-dragon-beard-candy-a-hard-to-find-chinese-candy-in-chinatown/

Dragon beard candy is a fairly rare Chinese candy that surprisingly is found here in Manhattan’s Chinatown. A while back I’d seen this cart around a couple of times, but I figured that it went out of business because I only saw it a few times and it’s not really a Cantonese or Fujian candy, so I figured it just never got any traction. However, that seems to not be the case as it seems to be permanently located in a fish and vegetable market on Grand between Chrystie and Bowery.

Dragon Beard Candy: Dragon beard candy looks like a bunch of white cocoons. Typically, it’s one of those things that I’ve found to be more of a novelty than something I craved, but I can respect someone who knows how to make it since I think it’s sort of a pain to make and has a very short shelf life. It’s made up of sugar, maltose syrup, ground peanuts and coconut. The sugar and maltose syrup is melted and pulled into fine strands, which is sort of similar to cotton candy, but finer. The interior is filled with a mixture of ground peanuts and coconut shavings. I found Yao’s version to be quite good, actually better than most other versions I’ve had. The strands are delicate and very fine and I liked the ground mixture in the inside. I enjoyed them enough to buy them more than once. Here’s a Wikipedia article about them (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dragon&#...). Overall, it’s pretty good and definitely worth a try. 8/10

If you’re in Chinatown, I’d suggest dropping in and giving it a try as it’s definitely not very easy to find even in Asia and it’s pretty tasty.

  1. s
    SomeRandomIdiot Apr 1, 2012 05:30 PM

    I've only had it a few times at that spot in Ctown. I think it's good but not great. The centers are a bit too dense. The strands that make up the outside could also be a bit fluffier/lighter.

    3 Replies
    1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
      Lau Apr 2, 2012 06:36 AM

      i tried it again on sunday actually (3rd time) and it wasn't quite as good on sunday, id concur with your assessment on the 3rd time, but the first two times it was better. i'm wondering whether i got it made fresher b/c if it sits around it gets kind of hard and tougher to eat. if you try it like the next day or something its basically totally expired at that point

      1. re: Lau
        SomeRandomIdiot Apr 2, 2012 09:46 AM

        I tried it a couple of times when it was a guy making them and a couple of times when there was a lady making em. it doesn't seem like either of them give you fresh ones. There's been a huge stack of premade ones each time I was there.

        1. re: SomeRandomIdiot
          Lau Apr 2, 2012 09:52 AM

          oh i havent seen the lady, only the older dude who's always trying to up sell you on more although he's fairly nice

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