Friday, September 17, 2010
I almost don't want to share this hidden gem. I will only divulge Luscious Dumplings Inc. if you promise to make room for me when I go or share a yummy dumpling with me! =D Tucked away in a tiny strip mall, they are only open certain hours and have very limited seating space. Often you will find people standing outside waiting to get in with the sheet below in hand all filled out. I've been here a few times where the parking lot is overflown, but don't worry there's tons of local street parking.
Fair warning, they do take vacations in the summer. It might be safer to call ahead to make sure they are open and their hours. The staff is friendly and quick.
Once we were seated they brought us a small plate of Marinated Seaweed that was savory and spicy. This is a typical Asian side dish that's healthy and flavorful. A good source of iron.
My favorite item here is Pan Fried Pork (Potstickers). I have tried the steamed dumplings but they really lack the oomph, texture, and flavor for some reason. After trying most everything on the menu, I can clearly say that this is my favorite item on the menu and the one I highly recommend to first timers.
They are nicely pan fried on the outside to add that extra bite in texture. The natural juices and flavoring of the filling encapsulated inside. Pipin' hot and delicious! I wonder if they sell these in bulk frozen so I can pan fry some up at home to satisfy my craving and hunger!! Whenever I come, I order tons extra and take home for the next day... still good! Not crispy but the flavor is still there. You can order any of these dumplings in combination with noodle soup at a great price too.
Even though the base filling, pork, is relevantly the same. A few more ingredients can really change the flavor and texture. I've had the Pan Fried Napa, Pork, and Sole. There's huge chunks of ginger embedded to help mask or tone down any fishy flavor from the sole. The inner texture changes greatly with a soft piece of fish like sole. Overall the flavor isn't as persistent or flavorful with the addition of fish. Of course this makes the dumplings lighter and healthier, which is a trade off in flavor here.
Growing up we always made Pan Fried Chive, Pork, Egg, and Glass Noodle Pockets. I am always on a quest to find ones comparable to the ones we make. Luscious Dumpling does a great job! I can't stop chowing down on these. The pungent flavor of the chive illuminates through the thin pan fried crust that's just like a piece of heaven to me. They are so flavorful here that I don't even bother adding soy sauce and vinegar to give it an extra kick. These are also great the next day, minus the crispy crust. Of course if you want to regain some of the crisp texture just take out a pan, put a little oil, heat, and throw on the leftovers. Pan fry until it is heated thoroughly then let it cool off and voila! Great leftovers!
All in all I love this place for pan fried dumplings! It is mine and I am not sharing! O=D Darn my website and eagerness to share good food. Just promise to save me a seat and bite! They do run out of certain items if you come late. What makes this place good? Simple! Their homemade skin has just the right thickness and texture along with a flavorful good base filling, the pork. This is what makes them stand out from the rest. I have had many dumplings, pot stickers, buns, chive pockets, and more. When it all comes down to it, the skin makes a HUGE difference because it can make or break the filling inside.
Luscious Dumplings Inc.
704 W Las Tunas Dr
San Gabriel, CA 91776