Thursday, 1 November 2012

Chinese Dumpling and Noodle House, Kingsford

I'd heard from a few people that there are a couple of fabulous dumpling eateries in Kingsford, and that the Chinese Dumpling and Noodle House ('CDNH') was one of them - that, in fact, Kylie Kwong recommended eating there. Just like the other Asian eateries around the area, CDNH is extremely casual and pretty much like your local Chinese takeaway shop. The portions are generous, the prices very low, and the flavours a bit hit and miss. CDNH's facade itself is pretty inconspicuous, blending in amongst its competitors, so look out for the big red sign.

Facade
The waitresses' grasp of English is limited (I've experienced a mix-up of our order), but their service is polite and attentive. If you go there at lunch time on a quiet day, you'll probably see the staff (cooks included) laying out a banquet for themselves and chatting amicably.

Interior
The dumpling prices range from $4.50 to $11, depending on the type of dumpling and the portion. If you're looking for big portions, the boiled and steamed dumplings are the way to go - with plates of 14 - 16 dumplings for $8 - $10. Personally, I'm not a big fan of their dumplings. There's something lacking in taste - the fillings seem to consist of the same meat (despite ordering dumplings with different fillings) and they lack salt, consequently making them taste quite bland. On the plus side, they seem to add very little or no MSG, since I don't feel thirsty after each visit.

Menu - dumpling section
 I'll commence my dish-by-dish break down with the pan-fried three fresh delicacies dumplings. The filling is firm, quite patty-like, and somewhat dry - unlike other Shanghainese dumplings that I've had, there is no hot soup stock inside to tantalise the tongue. The dumpling skin is thin, soft and resembles boiled wonton skin. I would have preferred a more caramelised bottom - as you can see, they aren't very golden brown. As mentioned before, it lacks flavour, but it tastes and feels homemade.

Pan fried three fresh delicacies dumplings [pork, prawn, egg] x 12 ($9.50)
We tried one of their steamed dumpling dishes with a chicken filling, and apart from the limp texture of the dumpling skin, it was pretty much identical to the pan fried dumplings above. We suspected they got our order wrong, but we didn't know for sure.
Steamed dumplings [Northern style/ chicken] x 7 ($4.80)
Surprisingly, the pan fried bun tasted significantly better than the other dumplings. - probably because they contained more salt than the previous two. There was no soup inside (again), but the bottoms were a bit more toasted.
Pan fried bun x 6 ($8.00)
 I've also tried a few of their noodles. Their black pepper noodles with capsicum and onion are outstanding, particularly if you choose to have them with udon noodles (as opposed to rice noodles). There's a choice between beef and chicken, and both meats are cooked well - tender and succulent.

Stir fried udon noodle with beef in black pepper ($8.80)
Stir fried udon noodle with chicken in black pepper ($8.80)
I've also tried their Hokkien noodles with beef, which tastes similar to the black pepper noodles. Though tasty, the black pepper noodles are still the best.
Stir fried Hokkien noodles with beef ($8.80)
In summary:
- Cheap
- If you must have dumplings, eat the pan fried buns
- The black pepper noodles are recommended


Chinese Dumpling & Noodle House on Urbanspoon

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