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Dim sum after dark? Definitely!

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The Shang Palace serves up your favorite Chinese comfort food at Dim sum Nights, for a limited time only

Everyone drools over dim sum – after all, what’s not to love about this traditional, tasty, and easy to enjoy Cantonese comfort fare? Succulent dumplings that please your palate, in all their flavorful goodness, soft and doughy meat-filled delights, puff balls fried to crisp perfection, and an array of other sumptuous savory treats are favorites of foodies the world over.

The breakfast of champions

Culturally speaking, it is customary to eat these small, bite-sized goodies served in steamer baskets or on small plates in the morning, up to the early afternoon. The Chinese, especially the older set, usually serve dim sum after morning exercises, such as Tai Chi, to energize their bodies for the day. You could, perhaps, call it their breakfast of champions.

Folk of all ages also enjoy the satisfying snack-sized goodies at noontime or later on in the day, with hot tea.

It may come as a surprise to some, however, to learn that Chinese do not generally eat dim sum in the evening. There is no clear-cut reason for this, save to say that it’s just how it is; much like people likewise associate pancakes with breakfast fare. But, I, for one, could eat breakfast food all day long – and there are many, many others with the same gustatory preference.

Let them eat dim sum!

To help lovers of dim sum, the Metro over, satisfy their cravings for the good stuff well beyond sunset, Makati Shangri-La Manila’s Shang Palace has launched Dim Sum Nights. Until June 30, the city’s raved about authentic Cantonese restaurant will be offering dim sum for dinner. The restaurants’ Cantonese dim sum chef, Leung Ka Fai, and manager, Agnes Chua, have cooked up this extra-special limited-time offer for long-time guests and new customers in search of the best dim sum in town.

Well-loved selections such as juicy, plump steamed crystal skin shrimp dumplings, steamed pork dumplings with fish roe, water pan-fried shanghai bao, spinach dumplings stuffed with shrimps, deep-fried spring rolls, barbecued minced pork bun, and – my personal must-have – deep fried taro puffs with diced scallops, all await eager appetites.

The list goes on, and there is something to please the most discriminating of dim sum lovers. Relish these offerings with a serving of hearty, fragrant Matchang sticky rice, and pearl chicken steamed in lotus leaves. And leave room for dessert – you must! – because the melt-in-your-mouth baked mini egg tarts with fresh milk make for a taste sensation you won’t soon forget.

Straight from the heart

I have always relished well-done dim sum, but I did not know until recently that this customary dish means “a little bit of heart.” It is a little bit of the Chinese (particularly, Cantonese) culture, served up for your enjoyment. I would imagine that it is also named such, as a little bit of tender loving care goes into its preparation. Have you ever tried meticulously folding a delicate wrapper ever so carefully to form a pouch around a dollop of meat, veggies, or seafood? It isn’t easy at all – trust me, I have tried many times and failed rather miserably at it.

So go ahead: have that dim sum, loaded with loving preparation. Have it after dark, if you wish. After all, it is breakfast time, somewhere in the world.

For inquiries and reservations, guests may call (02) 814-2580 or send an email to restaurant reservations at rric@shangri-la.com.

 

By ANGIE DUARTE

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