Dumpling Dozen

February 17, 2011

in dinner, restaurant, vegetarian

To commemorate the launch of Thick Dumpling Skin, dinner was no a brainer:


I never sweat a “B” rating. As Pulitzer Prize winning food critic Jonathan Gold says, “‘A’ stands for American Chinese, ‘B’ is Better Chinese, and ‘C’ is Chinese food for Chinese.”


But wait a second, isn’t this a Korean place?!?

The menu’s in Korean…


…there’s Korean TV on…


But the owners are Chinese!


I communicated in broken Mandarin to confirm that these Vegetable Dumplings were, in fact, completely vegetarian…


…and they also pointed me in the right direction for my order – I was thinking #9 and they told me that “Chinese people like #7.”


And I’m definitely a Chinese person!!!


Originally, Abe was going to pick up takeout so I could keep memorizing lines for a pilot audition. But by 8pm I needed a study break, so I threw a coat over my pajamas, stuffed my feet into Uggs, and settled into one of the empty tables for some fresh-from-the-kitchen action.


The owners told me it’s usually packed during the day. I believe it – I read Josh’s review on Food GPS and the article on their Garden Grove location in the OC Weekly. But I loved coming at night, when the free parking lot was empty and we had the entire place to ourselves.

Since we’re in Koreatown, the requisite Banchan, which I dominated most of (especially the Kimchi, which Abe didn’t touch)


But these “Vegetable Dumplings” are most definitely reminiscent of my Chinese childhood!


Let’s call them what they are – bao/steamed buns. But for the purposes of last night’s celebration, I accepted the “dumpling” label and thought of the soft fluffy dough as “thick skins



I figured that would be pretty filling, so I shocked myself as I polished off all twelve of the boiled dumplings with no problem


In addition to the shrimp, they were stuffed with pork and green chives


Everything – bao/dumpling – got dipped in this delicious sauce


The garlic continues to emanate from my pores this morning! I am also still digesting this meal, though I did not leave feeling bloated or stuffed at all…


…just one very happy dumpling :)

Myung In Dumplings on Urbanspoon


1 Megan February 17, 2011 at 9:34 am

Yummm, I love bao! I haven’t had it in way too long. Interesting about the B rating thing- I’ll keep that in mind next time I’m in LA!

2 rebecca lustig February 17, 2011 at 9:34 am

I hate nothing more when restaurants jip you of dumpling fillings! those look delicious :)

3 AshinMT February 17, 2011 at 9:36 am

YUM. I live in Montana and there is definately only Chinese for Americans Chinese here. However, i probably have not experienced anything else (boo), but even at 9:34 AM- those look delish. I used to live in Guam and was lucky enough to consume copius amounts of different types of Asian food, your posts make me miss it!

4 Jen @ keepitsimplefoods February 17, 2011 at 9:40 am

Haha, love that the menu was in Korean, but you communicated in Mandarin!
I had the most amazing steamed dumplings in Beijing last summer and, surprisingly, in London last fall. I am in love with those things, esp the hot garlic chili oil that goes on top! Sooooo good. Need some now.

5 Julie (A Case of the Runs) February 17, 2011 at 10:29 am

I love dumplings!! Lots of those places in the San Gabriel Valley! I also eat those frozen ones from Asian supermarkets… a whole lot cheaper sometimes…

6 Evan Thomas February 17, 2011 at 10:39 am

Dumplings are the perfect comfort food. I’m glad I made them gluten-free once, even if it was a hassle and I’ll never do it again, because now I know I could if I ever get the craving again.

7 Kelsey @ Snacking Squirrel February 17, 2011 at 10:39 am

hahaha i tend to smell like a garlic bulb myself, especially if i go to the sauna the next day after eating a lot or garlic. btw i love the tv caption “I was refused from the hospital this morning” hehe

xoxo <3

8 lowandbhold February 17, 2011 at 10:57 am

Those look great, I don’t think I’ve ever had anything like that. Looks delish.

9 balancejoyanddelicias February 17, 2011 at 11:13 am

These look so good, I love pork with green chives filling !
Btw, I used to go to restaurants with PJs under too! :)

10 emily (a nutritionist eats) February 17, 2011 at 12:08 pm

I am obsessed with dumplings/goyza/potstickers…you name it! Kimchi though, I don’t have a lot of experience with, but am not a fan. :(

11 annie February 17, 2011 at 12:29 pm

dumplings are my favorite! yummy!!

12 Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) February 17, 2011 at 12:54 pm

Oh YUM! Those look unbelievable!

13 kaitlinwithhoney February 17, 2011 at 1:10 pm

Forgive me for not being familiar with this food… which part was so garlicky? I ask because I totally want to try this stuff but tend to avoid major garlic.

14 Lynn at The Actors Diet February 17, 2011 at 3:30 pm

pretty sure it was the meat dumplings, b/c abe didn’t have garlic overload like me

15 LeQuan February 17, 2011 at 1:11 pm

Omg, I had to laugh at, “Chinese people like #7″. Haha! My biggest pet peeve when ordering at Chinese restaurants is when the menu states SHRIMP wontons or dumplings, but when they come out there’s pork inside as well. Argh! Can a girl not get jjust shrimp dumplings or wontons?

16 LeQuan February 17, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Same thing with veggie ones. Ground pork with veggies is not vegetarian!

17 Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg February 17, 2011 at 2:36 pm

Mmmmmm….these look SO good! Like pillows of yum!

18 jillerwich February 17, 2011 at 3:13 pm

omg was the first thing that came into my head. those look amazing.

19 Erika @ Health and Happiness in LA February 17, 2011 at 3:21 pm

I checked out the new blog, great job! I may not be Asian-American but I used to live in China so I consider myself a little Chinese. =) When I lived in Beijing I was obsessed with jiaozi. And yes, the restaurants there would NEVER pass health code in the U.S.!

20 Ruby W. February 17, 2011 at 3:31 pm

I love those Korean mandoos. The outside is so fluffy and insides are delicious. I like the little stall inside the food court of Plaza Market in Ktown. They only serve dumplings and mandoos.

21 Lynn at The Actors Diet February 17, 2011 at 4:35 pm

mmmm! do you know if they have any vegetarian ones?!?

22 Ruby W. February 17, 2011 at 5:07 pm

I think the only vegetation item on the menu is their red bean mandoos. Even when they say “shrimp dumplings”, they mix pork in them.

23 Amanda February 17, 2011 at 3:38 pm

My ex would NEVER go to places with anything less than an “A” rating, and it used to drive me nuts! So many of the best holes in the wall have “B” ratings, and are fantastic.
Good luck with your audition and a very busy pilot season!

24 Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca) February 17, 2011 at 8:17 pm

Dumplings are the greatest little things EVER!!!! I could live on dumplings alone :-)

25 Cindy February 17, 2011 at 9:43 pm

Yum Yum Yum. I have to admit I’m a dumpling whore. Promise me a plateful and I’ll be your bitch for the day. :O

26 lisa February 18, 2011 at 10:15 am

the pictures look so amazing. even though i just had my breakfast, i am hungry all over again. gah!

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