Xiao Long Bao or "Little Dumplings
in the Basket" was originated from Nan Xiang, a suburb of Shanghai.
Their perfectly symmetrical shape, resembles a pagoda.
These tender pouches, "little dumplings",
are freshly made to order. They arrive at the table in piping
hot bamboo steamers. Each plump dumpling contains a little pork
meatball surrounded by a delightful meaty broth.
To prevent burning one's mouth and to savor
the dumpling, the preferred method of consumption is to bite off
a little piece of the doughy wrapper, drip the broth to a spoon or suck the broth with a "slurp",
then eat the rest.
There are two variations available at Joe's
Shanghai - crab meat and pork meat. Each basket is freshly made
to order, so don't forget to order your Soup Dumplings upon arrival
at your table. Otherwise it might be a long wait.
A cartoonist, Robert Zimmerman, had drawn
"Soup Dumplings: A Survival Course" comic strip that
was once published in the newspapers. It comedically depicts the
hazard of eating a fresh, piping hot dumpling. Although a little
extreme, the danger of burning one's mouth is no different from
the dangers of enjoying a hot cup of coffee. (See Below)