My partner-in-crime from my Shenyang days decided to move to Beijing around October 2010, and we happened to arrive in Beijing on the same day and just 30 minutes apart! We celebrated New Year's Day at one of my all-time favorite restaurants in the world, Din Tai Fung, and apparently tons of other Chinese had the same idea.
I really didn't mind the 30 minute wait because that's nothing compared to the 3 year wait I had to endure since my last taste of DTF's juicy pockets of savory heaven. Sure, I went on a soup dumpling binge in NYC July 2010 (exhibit A; exhibit B) , but there's just something special about DTF's. I guess 2011 is my lucky year!
Stir-fried Snow Pea Leaves and a Steamer of DTF's Original Pork Soup Dumplings
Steamed Crab Meat and Pork Soup Dumpling
Steamed Shrimp and Pork Dumplings
Steamed Chicken Soup
The dishes above are the ones my family always order at DTF, but the chilled raw pumpkin slices in orange juice caught me off guard when I was skimming the menu. I couldn't resist ordering it, and this was mind-bogglingly good. I didn't even know you can eat pumpkin raw! This was crisp and refreshing, and the orange juice tingled my tongue and awakened my senses. I definitely want to try making this at home.
Chilled Pumpkin Slices Soaked in Orange Juice
We concluded the meal with ba bao fan, "8 treasures glutinous rice." It usually has red bean paste in the middle and is topped with red dates, lotus seeds, and various beans and dried fruits.
8 Treasures Glutinous Rice