February 19, 2016 / 2 Comments
A must visit. It’s pretty much the McDonald’s of Shanghai, but instead of burgers they serve the iconic Shanghainese soup dumpling, the shengjianbao.
Yellow trays, plastic booth seating, and no toilets.
Doesn’t sound like something you’d go out of your way for – and well, you won’t have to go too far, as there are several dotted around Shanghai – but this one is opposite Jia Jia Tang Bao so makes for an easy pit stop.
Shengjianbao are a bit like XLB but have a thicker skin, are much bigger and the bottom is fried to a crunchy consistency. Different to XLB but just as delish, if less delicate. The iconic flavour is pork, but they also have them in vegetarian and seafood varieties. Four will set you back a mere 8 Yuan. EIGHT YUAN.
I mean, are you serious? I can’t even fathom how cheap this is. You could save so much money by existing solely on these (but you’d probably end up looking like one)!
Make your selection at the counter – you may have to point as again, no English here. Take your receipt to the window behind you and a lovely man will serve you up a plate of fried, soupy, juicy goodness. Warning – these things are seriously full of soup.
You’ll make a mess no matter how hard you try to eat these politely. Grab lots of napkins! We tried a few other things on the menu (curry soup among others) but well, they were (in our books, locals were digging in with fervour) horrendous. Actually, I take that back – the crumbed pork was pretty good if not pretty standard.
My opinion: stick with the shengjianbao and save your appetite for other Shanghai treats!
Price: 1/2 a $. 8 yuan for four dumplings – that’s 4.5dhs, or $1.2 USD.