Friday, August 04, 2006

Vegetarian Dim Sum House

Sorry about that folks. We’ve finally started settling into our new apartment. Let the reviews resume! We recently ate at the famous (amongst NYC vegetarians at least) Vegetarian Dim Sum House in Chinatown at 24 Pell Street in Manhattan.

Spinach Dumplings
So YUM! These had a chewier/gummier outside than most dumplings. Inside they were filled with seasoned mock shredded chicken and veggies. They tasted like a dry pot pie, that is to say, all the delicious flavor of a pot pie without the soupy stuff. -Ev
From the outside, these looked like they’d be similar to the veggie dumplings you can get at most Chinese places, but the filling was unique and tasty. -Jim

Buddha’s Bean Curd Rolls
The texture of these rolls might be a little bit odd to someone who’s never had them before. They were basically veggies wrapped in bean curd skin and soaked in a somewhat slimy sauce. If you can get past the sliminess, though, you will be rewarded with a delicious, super-savory experience. -Jim
These are a little awkward to eat but you just gotta shove ‘em in and chew, chew, chew. They were really tasty. -Ev

Treasure balls with Assorted Flavor
Often referred to (by us anyway) as Chinese knishes, these are flaky/crunchy on the outside and had soft and smooth taro goodness inside. I definitely recommend that a) you eat these and b) you eat these with hot mustard. -Ev
They’re also good with soy sauce. In fact, I discovered that they are good with soy sauce and spicy mustard at the same time. I think they’re called “Treasure Balls with Assorted Flavor” because sometimes they cook things into them, like little bits of mock ham or whatever. But even when they’re plain, they’re still good. -Jim

Mini Sticky Rice in Lotus Leaf
For those of you who have never had sticky rice in a lotus leaf, the general idea is that they take some fillings, surround them in sticky rice, and then wrap the rice in a lotus leaf and steam it. This was a miniaturized version of that and it was delicious. The fillings here were little bits of mock meat and veggies. The earthy flavor and moist, sticky texture of the rice was what really made this dish fantastic, though. I enjoy this dish with a good amount of soy sauce, but I am a salt addict so others may not need the soy here. -Jim
These ruled. The rice was definitely the best part because it was so thick and sticky and had the subtle flavor of the lotus leaf. I also liked how the filling didn’t overwhelm the rice. -Ev

Fried Turnip Cakes
One of my favorite dishes here! While the consistency was a little gummy, they had enough flavor to give the dish some weight, especially when combined with the rich sauce. Jim thought the sauce tasted too fishy but I thought it worked perfectly with the turnip cake to optimize its saltiness and flavor. -Ev
Yeah, the sauce that they come with is a little gross to me. But I just put a little soy sauce on these babies and they become salty, starchy goodness. -Jim

Vegetarian Mock Roast Pork Buns
These were white, fluffy pastries filled with somewhat sweet mock pork. They were tasty but I found them to be a little dry. -Jim
I usually don’t like dumplings with soft, bready outsides but these were really tasty. The sauce was a thick bbq sauce that was a little sweet. The bready outside sucked up the sauce and complimented the chewy texture of the pork. -Ev

The Bottom Line
Vegetarian Dim Sum is on of the best places to eat when you're not sure what you want but you want it to be hot, good, and cheap! In other words, this is one of the best Vegan restaurants in NYC. I have yet to get a dish here that I didn't love. As an added bonus you can also order tons of mock-meat Chinese dishes (like Sweet and Sour Chicken, Mock Iron Steak, etc) in addition to the Dim Sum. We love the Dim Sum so much we usually just stick to that menu, but maybe we'll review some Chinese dishes in the future. -Ev
To give you an idea of how cheap it is, we ordered everything above plus an additional order of the treasure balls plus a Sesame Paste Bun that we forgot to take a picture of, and the bill came to less than $25. Very cheap! One thing I noticed on this visit was that there are still a lot of items on the Dim Sum menu that we’ve never tried. I find that to be unacceptable and we’ll need to come back soon. -Jim


Anonymous Terry said...

Hotdamn I love Veggie Dim Sum!

May I also suggest:

-Red Bean Cake: Kind of freaky translucent dumplings that giggle to the touch, filled with sweet creamy red beans with a touch of coconut

-Monk Dumplings: Because it's awesome to say "monkdumplings!"

-Treasure Boxes with Assorted Flavor: Never figured out what assorted flavors they mean, but they're deep-fried, delicate and delightful with hot mustard

-Rice Noodle with Chinese Broccoli (or Kale): A big flat noodle hugs some crisp green vegetable matter, covered in lots of sesame soy sauce.

There's only like 25 more dim sum things on the menu so get eating!

4:23 PM, August 04, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I never had! I have been totally craving for a pork bun, so I am so coming with you next time!

4:25 PM, August 04, 2006

Anonymous Isa said...

"Treasure balls". You guys are perverts.

4:15 PM, August 05, 2006

Anonymous paula said...

good timing guys! i'm going there on monday with my mom!

p.s. why do you let isa comment on your blog?

2:20 AM, August 06, 2006

Blogger veganfriendly said...

I hope you had good dimsum with your mom. As for letting Isa post here, her caretaker said the expression would be healthy for her and delay "episodes".

12:22 PM, August 08, 2006

Anonymous Big Ees said...

Wee! The internet is funnn!!!

5:32 PM, August 10, 2006

Anonymous Paula said...

I had an awesome dinner here on monday! we ate wayyyyyy too much food . Did you guys try the juices? We tried the kiwi, mango and papaya juices and also the lychee and pineapple ices. The kiwi juice was soo amazing! it was just like pureed kiwi. I really liked the lychee ice, but it was kinda just lychee water with a bunch of lychees in the bottom. We tried almost all the things you tried and a few other things as well. also we got fried bananas for dessert. I was so full I couldn't eat breakfast the next morning. YUM!

11:39 AM, August 11, 2006

Blogger nicole said...

I love your blog, it makes me want to move to NYC. Keep up the **wipes drool from mouth** good work :-)

10:03 PM, August 11, 2006

Blogger veganfriendly said...

I know, Paula. The food there is deceptively filling. You see all these little num nums and you're like "Oooh. There's room for one more!" and the next thing you know your stomach is distended and you want to die. But at least you'd die with good food in your belly.

Nicole, thanks for the drool! We're glad you like the site.

::gives big ees a cookie::


5:20 PM, August 12, 2006

Blogger RuthWeb said...

Hi, Guys.

Thanks for the great pix and reviews.

I am probably missing the point of your website but have you tried Angelika Kitchen. Is that just too obvious?

I think it's the finest vegan food in NYC. And the cookbook is a revelation.

5:00 PM, August 25, 2006

Blogger Delilah said...

I do love the Buddha’s Bean Curd Rolls. I have been craving this place for awhile. Forgot where it was. Forgot what I liked. I think your blog is gonna help me figure it all out. Tanks.

3:02 PM, August 27, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Abel and I took some co-workers here last week. It wasn't as good without you.

- Erica (I forgot my password)

10:29 PM, December 21, 2006

Anonymous Laurie said...

This was the first of many places we went to on our vegan eating vacation in NYC and it was amazing! Great price, fast, and very yummie !

Thank you for this blog - your reviews are so helpful for finding great vegan places !

10:37 AM, August 22, 2009


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