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Dec 6, 2012 08:51 PM

Finding good Chinese/Asian pastries for tea

I'm crazy for really fine loose-leaf green and oolong teas, and I've noticed that the only pastries or cookies that really go well with them are Asian too. Minimally sweet, sometimes with interesting filling like bean paste.

I'm inexperienced with Chinese bakeries, but most I've ventured into seem to feature oversweet Western-style cakes, sponge cakes, and Chinese buns, maybe scallion pancakes.

I'm thinking more of small, light pastries. I've had some but I'm afraid I don't know what any of them are called by name. For all I know they may be made with something other than wheat flour.

Any suggestions of bakeries, groceries, and specific items would be welcome. Even pre-packaged, if they're good.


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  1. Even though they look like Western cakes, the Chinese bakery versions will often be less sweet.

    For example, my parents like roll cakes from Chinese bakeries because they are less sugary and use less frosting.

    What about some egg custard tarts, Chinese buns with sweet fillings, or sesame balls (with red bean or lotus paste filling)? Do you like mochi? Or pineapple cake (they look like Chinese fig newtons)?

    Lau's posts are always helpful regarding Chinese bakeries:

    1. For specific items: I like the lost wife cake and egg custard tarts at Double Crispy Bakery and mung bean hopia from Lung Moon. If you want to get really exotic, whenever I am near Johnny's Air Market, I pick up hopia baboy, flaky laminated pastry filled with a mixture of sweet bean paste, candied pork, sesame and scallions.

      You should also consider visiting a bakery like Cafe Zaiya or Takahachi for green tea swiss rolls and anpan (stuffed sweet breads) with red bean paste.