Nanxiang Steamed Stuffed Buns(Nanxiang Xiaolongbao) 南翔小笼包
Famous for its thin wrapper, hearty flavor, and tender meat, Nanxiang steamed buns have been a local favorite for more than 100 years. From season to season this little delicacy’s flavor changes. In the spring, it is stuffed with tender bamboo shoots; summer requires something lighter and fresh like shrimp; and, of course, in the autumn, local crab becomes part of the flavor. The translucent buns are as small as water chestnuts, so you can just pop them in your mouth; however, Shanghainese have developed an intricate way of eating them: first, they bite them carefully to sip out the juices; then, they dip them into Zhenjiang vinegar to add a little tangy zip. Any way you eat them, though, you’re sure to find them delicious!
Nanxiang Steamed Bun Shop
In the 1900s, Wu Xiangsheng from Nanxiang Town, Jiading County, opened a cake shop in Shanghai. Originally, it was named Chang Xing Lou, but later it was changed to Nanxiang Steamed Bun Shop, and it started to specialize in the Nanxiang steamed stuffed buns with thin shells and hearty fillings which have been since become famous throughout China. Today, there are 28 chain stores in China, and Nanxiang Steamed Bun Shop has begun to expand to overseas markets.
Add: 85 Yuyuan Laolu, Shanghai
Opening hrs: 7:30-21:00
Gu Yi Yuan Nanxiang Xiaolong
With more than a century’s history, Gu Yi Yuan sells Nanxiang buns famous for their thin skins and juicy, flavorful fillings.
Add: 238 Guyiyuan Lu, Nanxiang Town, Jiading District, Shanghai
Tel: 021-59121335, 59126013
Website: http://www.gyynx-xiaolong.com/qn.htm (Chinese)
Opening hrs: 7:30-21:00
Xie Ke Huang 蟹壳黄
Xie Ke Huang are pancakes stuffed with green onion, pork, sugar, and red bean paste, and topped with sesame seeds—crispy on the outside and succulent on the inside! (The stuffed pancakes look like a boiled crab shells—hence the name.)
Add: 255 Yanping Lu, Jing’an District, Shanghai
As the ‘King of Fried Stuffed Buns,’ Fengyu Eatery has been selling these delicious snacks since the 1970s. Fengyu’s buns are renowned for their thin, crispy crust, generous meat stuffing, and rich juice.
Add: 985 Wenxi Lu, Zhabei District, Shanghai
Steak with Rice Cake (Paigu Niangao) 排骨年糕
Crispy, tasty, fresh and tender, Pai Gu Nian Gao are loved by the locals. There are two eateries that are famous for steak with rice cake: Xiaochangzhou Restaurant and Xiaodelai Restaurant. Each of them has created their own closely-guarded recipe, so you’ll want to visit both.
This dish is prepared with pork rib loin from Changzhou or Wuxi, marinated in soy sauce and then fried in a mixture of soy sauce, oil, sugar, wine and seasonings. It is then battered in cooked Songjiang rice and cooked in soy sauce. The final product is delicious, soft and crispy.
Add: intersection of Fuzhou Lu, Sichuan Zhonglu, Shanghai
This kind of steak rice cake is golden in color, crispy on the outside, juicy and tender on the inside. Battered steak is fried in oil and then dipped in Songjiang rice and cooked with soy sauce, soybean paste and chili sauce for a mildly sweet and spicy taste.
Add: 100 Yunnan Nanlu, Shanghai
Chunfeng Songyue Vegetarian Restaurant
Located in the Yu Yuan commercial complex, but slightly away from its crowded center, this restaurant dates back to the early 1900s. A great place to gorge on imitation meats, stewed dishes, tofu dishes, noodles, and dumplings at affordable prices. The second floor (opens at 11am) offers more formal (i.e. pricier) dining with signature dishes such as Caixin Xiehuangyou ("crab"—actually made of carrot, mushroom, and bamboo, among other ingredients), Chenpi Suya (orange peel "duck"), and Xianggu Caibao (vegetable steamed buns). For cheaper, more casual dining try the vegetarian spring rolls (Chunjuan) or the succulent Xianggu Mianjin Mian (noodle soup with gluten and mushrooms) served up on the first floor. A Chinese/English menu makes your selection process a bit easier.
Add: 23 Bailing Lu, Old Chenghuang Temple, Shanghai
Gaoqiao Muffin (Gaoqiao Songbing) 高桥松饼
A sweet snack made of wheat flour, lard, sugar, red beans, and Osmanthus (tea olives), this rich, crumbly pastry is one of the four renowned pastries of the Gaoqiao Bakery. All the products from this bakery can be bought at its retail department at the corner of Huaihai Zhong Road and Ruijin Road.
Pear Paste Candy (Shanghai Ligao Tang)上海梨膏糖
First created over 1300 years ago from solidified pear syrup, Pear Paste Candy is a local treat made from a combination of herbs, flowers, roots, nuts, and other natural ingredients. The best place to find it is the Shanghai Pear Candy store in Yuyuan Garden Commerce City. Pear Paste Candy not only tastes great, but has medicinal properties as well, relieving coughs, asthma attacks, and stimulating the appetite.
Store of Pear Pasta Candy
Add: 41 Wenchang Lu, Huangpu District, Shanghai
Website: http://www.yuyuantm.com.cn (Chinese)
The Store of Shanghai’s Five-spiced Beans
Add: 1320 Waimalu, Shanghai
Website: http://www.shwxd.com (Chinese)
Yang Chun Noodle (Plain Noodle) (Yangchunmian) 阳春面
Yang Chun (“Spring”) Noodles are a simple dish of fresh noodles in a broth of shrimp and scented scallion oil. They are smooth and tasty, a perfect light meal.
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