SGV: All the Dumplings at You Kitchen
The latest dumplings darling in San Gabriel Valley is You Kitchen. They’re a small spot near 101 Noodle Express and a bowling alley. Surprisingly I haven’t had problems parking in the lot considering it’s shared between all the businesses.
When you arrive, pick a table number and order at the kiosk. You’ll need that table number to start your order. The menu is divided into buns, dumplings, noodles, drinks, appetizers and frozen dumplings (to go).
We started with a couple of appetizers including cucumber salad and seaweed. I was appreciative of the large servings which fed the five of us nicely.
Some of my favorite bao are sheng jian bao (shown above). Though these are apparently slightly different from the ones I’m used to. First, the bao were very fluffy and soft. There wasn’t much juice but I appreciated nothing squirted all over the place. The bottoms are slightly crisp.
On my second visit, we got spicy wontons. The level of spice is just right. I also loved all the small wontons. Each bite was perfect.
We got a couple of boiled dumplings including the classic pork, shrimp and chives. I’ll always order these over and over but I am interested in trying all the different ones available at You Kitchen. I like anything crunchy so I’m eyeing celery next. And cabbage ones are always a good bet. I was surprised these dumplings came with a dipping sauce. I liked the sauce very much but you can always mix up your own from the soy, vinegar and chili sauces on the table.
I can’t go to a noodles and dumplings spot and not get noodles. Usually the first one I try is beef noodle soup. It’s not spicy and the broth was very clean. The beef was also very tender. I did recently get this bowl again and tried it with the thin noodles over the handmade ones. I liked both but if you’re afraid of the noodles becoming too soft, I advise getting the handmade ones.
I’m super into Asian prep of pumpkin. These shrimp and pumpkin dumplings were some of my favorites that day.
Once someone told me the Chinese didn’t have sandwiches. I disagreed then and now I present you with the very Chinese version of pita! All right, so it’s not quite a sandwich per se though some might argue *everything* is a sandwich and these are the very definition of sandwiches.
The sesame bread is stuffed with minced meat. I would add either a little vinegar or if you still have some cucumber salad left over to the pockets. They need a little zip and crunch.
The first time I had You Kitchen’s xiao long bao, I remember thinking the skins were so tender and I was afraid they’d pop open spilling the lovely soup inside. But they didn’t and I was so glad!
Then I had them again recently and they seemed different. The skins were a little thicker. I really hope no one complained about their soft wrappers! I’ll just have to go again to try these babies again.
Dan dan noodles are some of my favorite noodles. The sauce was great but I chose handmade noodles and they were too thick for this dish. I’d try these with thin noodles next time. Or actually I really want to try the preserved veggies and pork noodles.
I always like hand pies. They’re like Chinese empanadas. They’re filled with lovely stuff. In this case, these were the only vegetarian things we got with chives and eggs.
My first visit was so great and I couldn’t stop thinking about You Kitchen. My second visit was also good but I could tell it was a little different from the first time. Everything needed just a tiny bit more seasoning. I’ll just have to go again… and again! I love that they are so friendly and it’s extremely easy to order and pay. You even save a $1 if you pay in cash.
1402 E Valley Blvd., Alhambra, CA 91801 — (626) 977-8088
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