Dim Sum Demonstration at Shanghai Blues

Shanghai Blues is a bit of a hidden gem located off the ever-bustling High Holborn street near to Covent Garden. It’s a hidden gem because it’s so easy to miss it and when its surrounded by tacky high street chains and a number of pubs on either side. During the week they normally hold some sort of jazz events and their high quality Chinese cuisine (dim sum on weekends) serve to also ensure steady business.

I’d read about their Dim Sum demonstration event from a London bloggers website and was excited to hear them re-run the event in September. They even flew Executive Chef Hong Qiu Feng flown in from Canton to help out with this particular event so no doubt it was going to be good.

The evening started with a welcome glass of champagne and some nibbles including coated peanuts and picked vegetables. The middle of the dining room had been converted into two large demonstration areas, with the ingredients for the dumplings already prepared and waiting for us eager participants to take part. I didn’t realise how simple the dim sum wrapper recipes were (equal parts rice flour + potato flour with some water or coloured juice – spinach or carrot for green or orange).

They also prepared the fillings for us (though we walked away with the recipes in a small kit prepared by them) and the heart of the evening ended up practicing filling the dumpling wrappers using methods particular to each type of dim sum.

We also got our individually labelled baskets that we got to fill with the product of our making so our we’d get to taste and see the finished products.

Considering the entertainment and the great banquet that followed, the cost of the evening was well worth the experience. There’s obviously a skill involved with dim sum making but I didn’t realise how simple some of the ingredients and preparation could be.