SGV: Dim Sum at Elite
When it comes to dim sum, I consider myself an expert having eaten it twice a week every week growing up. Okay, so maybe I’ve never made dim sum (but I have made wontons) but I still think I’m an expert at dumplings. For that’s what I really want at dim sum- dumplings. Sure, I may like egg rolls and the other delicacies I delight in but I really just want a bunch of dumplings. Sometime in the 90s, I noticed dim sum dumplings were getting plumper and bigger. At Elite, one of the better dim sum houses in San Gabriel Valley, the siu mai (pork/ shrimp dumplings- also spelled shu mai) are enormous.These were probably my favorite bite of the day.
On the other hand, the har gow (crystal shrimp dumplings) are relatively average in size.
The Chinese broccoli and shrimp and asparagus cheung fun (rice roll) both came with sauce on the side. I’m not really sure how I feel that– does it make this restaurant with is odd Chinese-Egyptian decor “fancy pants” or health conscious? Either way, the greens were fresh and although not overly stuffed, the rice rolls were very fresh.
Of the wrapped items, I was really disappointed with the tofu-skin wrapped veggies. Normally it’s one of my faves but Elite’s version was too sweet. On the other hand, I loved the lotus-wrapped loh mi gai. The rice was savory with bits of abalone as well as fatty pork belly.
Elite had a pretty good rendition of the pork stuffed fried taro. I like to think of these things as Chinese shepard’s pie.
And we’re back to the dumplings. The Chiu Chow fun gor turned out to be a winner of the bunch. Normally the dumplings feature peanuts but Elite also stuffed these with pine nuts. The celery brought a refreshing bite to the dumplings.
The beggar’s purses of dumplings were stuffed with a crazy amount of meat and diced mushroom. I almost thought these were too unwieldy but when it comes to dumplings, I can go with the adage- bigger is better.