Friday, November 18, 2011
Siomai? Oh my!
About a month ago my husband and I went to this Asian store in downtown Al Khobar to look for dumpling wrappers as hubby wanted me to add Chinese dumplings in my growing menu for our food biz. It was there that I was able to buy glass noodles for my Chapchae among several small grocery items that we are unable to find in the local groceries. They also have the same brand of glass noodles that I use back home for my food business but it's more expensive here. 18 riyals for the same pack that I buy back home for only about 130 pesos. It was such great news though that the store did stock on dumpling wrappers, but I was dismayed by its cost. My husband told me to just buy it with my eyes closed rather than waste our trip. But I said that I'd just feel guilty buying the said item when I can buy more stuff with the 25 riyals I will be paying for a single pack of dumpling wrapper. In the Philippines I can buy more or less 10 packs for the same price, it was too much for me! I do understand however, that the reason this is so, is because it's basically an imported item. And no one really makes it locally as dumplings are not part of their staple food. Unlike back home where such food is already part of our culture as influenced by our Chinese ancestors.
I tried using the long rectangular wrapper that they use locally, sorry but at the moment I am unable to recall what it is called. I used it for my Chinese dumpling however, it failed to stick closely to the chicken meat but it was okay. Guilt-free rather than using the 25 riyal dumpling wrapper, this was a close alternative; 10 riyals for about 50 sheets if am not mistaken, is reasonable enough.
Oh for those who are new in Al Khobar so that you'd know, the Asian store is located at the corner of 8th street opposite Corniche. It's along the same row as Al Ramaniyah (farther down) and very near the chain of restaurants in that area.