Shanghai soup dumplings (also known as xiao long bao) get our vote for neatest food. These misleadingly delicate-looking dumplings hold an exciting surprise. The contain not only the standard lump of pork found in your ordinary Peking ravoli but also a burst of soup. People, there is liquid inside the solid! We don’t know that we can adequately describe how incredible this is. It seems, frankly, like nothing less than pure magic.
We became acquainted with soup dumplings while in New York. According to the magic of the MenuPages Find-a-Food search, there are no restaurants in Boston that serve soup dumplings. A true tragedy! But fear not, brave reader! Although you may not be able to waltz into Chau Chow City (or your Chinatown restaurant of choice) and order Shanghai soup dumplings, word comes from the geniuses at Serious Eats that Epicurious has generously posted a tutorial and recipe for the coveted magic food. As it turns out, somewhat disappointingly, the trick to getting the soup inside the dumpling is aspic, not sorcery. Still! We highly recommend whipping up a batch of these bad boys for your next dinner party. We can’t think of anything else that will better impress your guests.