Time for Dim Sum: Maison Kam Fung

December 10, 2010 · 3 comments

in Restaurants

Happiness is defined as feeling, showing, or expressing joy. One of the many things in this world that makes me happy is of course, food, which I enjoy eating various types of as well as many cuisines. From Italian to Middle Eastern, sushi to croissants, I’ll eat it all. There is one type of cuisine that gets me going every time. One meal that makes me so happy, I don’t know what to do with myself.

Dim sum. There’s something very satisfying about eating dumplings and dumpling-like foods for brunch, waiting 15-30 minutes for a table, charming waiters and waitresses pushing carts of steam baskets and prepared plates across the room, while sipping smooth tea. This is the life. No menu, just food coming to you. Choose what you want  or don’t want!

I visited what is considered the “best” dim sum in the city: Kam Fung in Chinatown. As I walk through the mall, passing by the little shops, I prepare myself for culinary adventure that awaits me. As we sip our hot tea and gaze upon the spicy mustard and chili sauce dish, I start perusing the room for what I think is the good stuff. We ate a lot, so here are just a few of the highlights:

We start with sticky rice wrapped in a lotus leaf, called lo mai gai. The yellowish hue of the rice indicates that it has been perfumed to perfection. The rice is just sticky enough that it doesn’t break apart, but is soft and full of flavor.

The shrimp dumpling, har gow, is flawlessly steamed. Two whole shrimps perfectly cooked, wrapped in a rice paper-like dough, served hot in steam baskets. Add some of that hot mustard, now that’s what I’m talking about.

Then, one of the favorites comes around on the cart: a tasty pork and peanut dumpling, called fun guo. Also enveloped in the same dough as the shrimp one, the tender pork is studded with whole peanuts. A nice crunch contrasts the sweet pork filling.

Xiaolongbao (shao-long-bao) usually have soup in them, making them soup-dumplings. But not all of them have soup, for example, the ones I ate several of at Kam Fung.  These are wrapped in a thin dough with a savory filling. The top is gently twisted to allow some steam to escape. I just think it fancies it up a bit, and makes it look incredible, which it certainly is.

Then, there’s nothing like some fried dumplings, a.k.a. jiaozi (very similar to Japanese gyoza). I love how they are cut in half with scissors and served with a tart vinegar that contrasts the sweetness of the meat filling. The crispy edges are a welcome texture here.

Last but not least, my favorite one. The dim sum item I drool about and have dreams over. The barbecue pork bun, called cha siu baao. There are 2 kinds of these: steamed or baked. The steamed ones are what you will find at Kam Fung. The white soft bread-like exterior is just a little bit sweet. The real flavor is what lurks inside. The deep red slow cooked pork makes my mouth water with every bite. True happiness happens here. It’s so soft and tender that you never want it to end. You can find the baked versions in any of the Chinese bakeries around the corner. The difference is the bread, since the baked one has a sweeter bun, almost like a light brioche. Both are incredible, and I can honestly say, I can live off these.

 

 

 

 

 

So the dim sum journey comes to an end about an hour later. There really is no dining experience quite like this. Needless to say, I’m happy. Here’s a few more pics for you to drool over.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

La Maison Kam Fung: 111 Rue Saint-Urbain, Montreal, QC H2Z 1Y2; (514) 878-2888

Kam Fung on Urbanspoon

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Jan December 10, 2010 at 11:31 am

Love this place. And what is so amusing, is that people keep telling me that they have a great dim sum place that we should try, and it always ends up being Kam Fung!

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Evelyne@CheapEthnicEatz December 24, 2010 at 11:03 am

Dim Sum is a definite treat best enjoyed with a group of friends around a large full table. Definitely next time we have to end up at the same table! Happy Holidays! Evelyne

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