Scrumptious Xiao Long Bao at Shanghai 456

Since my usual weekend cohorts were all planning to be out of town or spending time with their family over the long weekend, I thought I would be spending a non-social four days at home, but it turns out that lunches with others were in the works, starting with a tweet up at Shanghai 456. Carmen (@foodkarmablog) started things off by tweeting that she wanted to go for Shanghainese and everything snowballed into a small tweet up with Jerry (@Zoomjer), Joe (@stirfryjoe) and Susan (@mollyseats). Let’s just start off by saying I love tweet ups! I’ve gone to a few now and met some really awesome and interesting people. And I haven’t had a bad experience yet – although the first one was a little nerve-wracking (felt like the first day of school = “what if no one likes me???”) – but I would still definitely recommend going to one if you have the opportunity!

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More Dumplings, Darling?

I have been on a dumplings kick ever since the idea of #yegdumplings night popped up over twitter – who doesn’t love stuff stuffed into a wrapper of some sort? The idea was that everyone would produce a dumpling and bring it along to the party, but once the plan changed to bring a dumpling per two people, I convinced my pal A. to come to the party and do most of the work as we made vareniky (vereniki? spelling is apparently country dependent). Good times were had at the dumplings party hosted by Carmen over at Food Karma Blog and I was way too busy eating delicious dumplings to remember to take photos. Luckily, Carmen has a great summary post of the night so I direct you over to her blog to check out the action.

So why am I posting about dumplings when it sounds like I didn’t do much but hang out and eat? Because prior to the aforementioned plan change, I thought I would have to bring my own dumplings and bringing frozen pre-made dumplings to a foodie party probably guarantees never getting invited again. So as a non-cooking type person (knives and flame – essential to the cooking process but oh so scary to me), I had to scramble and figure out how on earth you make a (good tasting) dumpling? That is where my Mom comes in (what a good sport she is) – I demanded we make dumplings so I could learn and create semi-exact measurements for the future (a little of this is not very exact!). So without further adieu, I present to you:

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