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Oh Dim Sum….

As the first or second week of classes are coming to an end I had the joy of getting to make and eat real Chinese food. Nothing, well almost nothing, against the Chinese food we have up here in in Vermont, it’s just not really that good. Alright all be honest Vermont’s selection of Ethnic food flat out sucks. I was so spoiled back home in Kansas to be able to get decently good Ethnic food whenever I wanted to. That option just isn’t available up here, or if it is I have to drive an hour one way to get it, so it’s not as convenient as back home.

But getting to make the food in class and then getting to eat it for free was awesome! The best part is that we get a whole other day to make and eat more Chinese food, however this time it is by far the better half of Chinese cuisine, DIM SUM!!! Yes I am very excited for that class, but in order to get ready I had to do a little bit of reading and bookwork first. Below is everything that I had to do, well not the reading but the questions and answers to the readings. Enjoy and I hope to get the recipes from last weeks Chinese dishes up soon. They are not my dishes the are the ones we got from the school but having made most of them I can say that they are very good recipes,and if it has been a while since you all used a wok then feel free to dust them off and put them to work with the recipes I will be putting up.

International Flavors: Asia and the Middle East
Dim Sum

1.      What does dim sum literally mean?
Dim Sum means “a little bit of heart”

 2.      What region of China is most closely associated with dim sum?
With the Cantonese in southern China

3.      What meal period is associated with dim sum?
It is now the typical Hong Kong breakfast/lunch fare. It is more breakfast then lunch but in America it is also seen being served at dinner time.

 4.      How would you describe the dim sum dining experience? (1 paragraph)
Dim Sum is a little bit like an American style buffet but with a few key differences. First in most cases there will be women walking around the restaurant with carts of different dim sum dishes, and they will tell you what they have on the cart as they come up to your table. In other cases you may be given a piece of paper that list the dim sum offerings and have to order from this list. The second difference is that dim sum restaurants tend to be load and noisy, and you may have to wait a long time before a table opens up. However the wait will be well worth it. At a Dim Sum restaurant you will be able to get all sort of different steamed or fried dishes in the form of: beef, chicken, dumplings, steamed buns, and even sweets and cakes.

 5.      Generally speaking, how many servings of dim sum are there per plate/order?
Most of the dishes have 3-4 servings per plate. This is so that you can go with a group of people and share around so that everyone can try some.

 6.      What does the author mean when she states that “tea is the focal point of the meal?”
This is going to be the first thing that the waiter or server is going to ask you when you sit down for your dim sum. Also traditionally dim sum got it start along the silk trade roads as a place to sit down drink some tea and relax and recuperate after or before getting back on the long road.

 7.      Identify two customs of tea service listed in the reading
“Playing Blackjack with your Teacup”- This is when you would like a refill of tea and you pick up the pot to pour for everyone else first before you pour for yourself. It is customary to tap your index of middle finger on the table or side of the teacup in thanks for having them pour you a cup, just like you where asking for another card in blackjack.

The other custom of tea service at a dim sum restaurant is about how to go about getting a refill of your tea pot, or a warming up if the tea has gone cold. To do this you would simply tilt the lid of the tea pot and tilt it diagonally into the opening of the pot, or balance it on top of the pot between the handle and the opening.

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One Comment on “Oh Dim Sum….”

  1. Grandma January 17, 2012 at 3:41 pm #

    Tori must love A Dim Sum meal with her tea.

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