KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 19 — Whenever I come across a stall selling gyozas, I cannot resist trying them. That's how I ended up ordering gyozas and much more from these two stalls at Bangsar Lucky Garden.
Hidden inside Restoran Ming Hin, which is more popular for their bamboo noodles and sam kan cheong, I was surprised to find them. The words "Dong Bei" caught my eye at one stall. As I talked to them more, I found out it's actually two stalls side by side, which are run by a Chinese native.
One stall said they sold authentic Dong Bei dishes which had hand-made noodles served with various toppings such as lion head meatballs, braised pork, and pickled vegetables and pork. The other one was Juan's Oriental Kitchen which offered porridge, gyozas, xiao long baos and pan mee! You can also get fried rice, chicken wantans and crystal dumplings.
I actually wanted to try almost every item on their menus but I couldn't. Priorities meant I zoomed in on the gyozas.
You get eight pieces for RM10.50. There's a choice of fried or boiled versions. I really enjoyed the juicy pork filling with cabbage and Chinese celery.
My personal favourite is usually the fried variety with the frilly crispy edges. They give you two dips with fresh ginger shreds: one with vinegar and another with a little chilli oil. The chilli vinegar dip perks up the dumplings perfectly to make them even more irresistible. If you prefer convenience, you can also purchase frozen gyozas to cook at home.
It's unusual to see lion head meatballs served in a coffee shop. There's a choice of having it with hand-made noodles (RM8.50) or just on its own (four pieces for RM30). I decided to try the noodles version and it was a good choice.
You get a clear, comforting broth with the smooth noodles that went well with the huge meatball. You can slowly relish the noodles with the juicy minced meat ball.
Since they had rice dishes, I decided to sample their lou ru fan or braised pork with rice (RM9). It's a pairing that cannot go wrong since it's comfort food.
You get tender pork belly meat with rice that you can relish. There's also marinated eggs to bulk up your protein levels. Tastewise, it reminded me of home cooking with a more simple air.
If you prefer other braised meat cuts, they also offer pork knuckle or pork ribs. You can also ask for the braised meat to be paired with their handmade noodles.
I reckon another visit at the coffee shop is needed. Maybe a dine-in experience since taking away xiao long baos can be a tricky one with the soup inside the dumpling. And if I visit the place to eat there, I can mix and match bamboo noodles paired with char siu, together with the gyozas.
Juan's Oriental Kitchen, Restoran Ming Hin, 26, Lorong Ara Kiri 2, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. Open: 6am to 4pm. Days off not fixed. Tel:+6010-6635793.