Dim Sum: what it is, recipes and where to buy it

Dim Sum: what it is, recipes and where to buy it

We explain everything about Dim Sum: how to cook them, where to buy the dough or buy them already filled, some recipes for you to make them at home, varieties and names they have, as well as their origin and history.


Dim Sum recipes

Dim Sum are very easy to prepare, there are several recipes and you can fill them with whatever ingredients you prefer; meat, seafood, fruit, you can even make vegetarian Dim Sum. We recommend you to prepare them at home, buy the dough and fill them with whatever you like!

Shumai or Siu mai Recipe

Dim Sum, Dumplings, Wonton and Pork Bao by PF Chang’s


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What is Dim Sum?

Surely many of you have tried them, but you didn’t know their technical name. As “Dim Sum” we know the appetizer that can be served steamed or fried. There are other methods, but these two mentioned are the most common.

As Dim Sum we can find a great variety of buns / chicks filled with an infinite number of ingredients, such as beef, pork, chicken, prawns and vegetables, etc. There are also versions for vegetarians. Traditionally, Dim Sum is a meal that is usually enjoyed during breakfast or brunch, as the small portions make them perfect as mini bites. It could be distinguished as the “Chinese tapas”, as it can be prepared in many ways and with different combinations of ingredients. Moreover, we can say that for many it is the perfect plan to share with family or friends.

Do you know the types of Dim Sum?

Below you will find a list of the most popular ones in Asia:

  • Cha Siu Bao

This is a barbecued pork baozi. This type of Dim Sum is served during yum cha and can even be found in many bakeries in China.

  • Xiao Long Bao

Small dumplings are very common in Eastern China, including Shanghai. These dumplings are usually steamed in traditional oriental bamboo pots.

  • Rice noodle rolls

This type of Dum Sum is a thick strip of Shahe fen (Chinese rice noodles), stuffed with prawns, vegetables, among many other ingredients.

  • Shumai

It is a type of traditional Chinese Dim Sum from Hunnot. This type of Dim Sum is the best known, they are also called Dumplings and are small bags of dough filled with the ingredients of your choice.

  • Finally, you can also find sweet Dim Sum, so why not enjoy them as a dessert as well?


Origin and history of Dim Sum

But what do we know about the origin of Dim Sum? We know that it is a traditional food style typical of Canton (southern China), although nowadays we can find it in many other Asian regions. The true meaning of the word dim sum ( 點心 in traditional Chinese) is “that touches the heart”. That’s why we’ve been captivated by them! 🙂

The history of Dim Sum is very curious and interesting, it is related to the famous tradition of yum cha, where travellers on the Silk Road needed places to rest and tea houses were set up on the roads. The owners of the tea houses started to add different snacks to drink with the tea and that is when Dim Sum was created. Therefore, they are always served with tea, in fact, several types of tea are served during Dim Sum.

It is a tradition for older people to meet for dim sum after a morning exercise. Or it is also traditional that at family gatherings, dim sum is the first meal of choice for everyone. In the beginning, restaurants only served dumplings until mid-afternoon, but nowadays many restaurants serve dim sum until dinnertime.

Have you ever heard of Dim Sum, have you ever prepared it, and do you have any ideas for a recipe? Don’t hesitate to show us the results of your recipes through our social networks @Oriental_Market.