by Carmen Van Kerckhove
Tim Wu just wrote a hilariously obsessive column for Slate bemoaning the poor quality of dumplings available in the U.S.
Jen, I feel like this is such a you kind of post. Not only is it about food, but it’s just begging for some of Jen Chau’s patented corny puns.
Dumpling rage, like road rage, strikes without warning. My first attack came in my mid-20s, while dining at Raku, a Washington, D.C., “pan-Asian” restaurant. I made the mistake of ordering something called Chinese dumplings. Out came a bamboo steamer containing what resembled aged marshmallows—dumplings cooked so long they were practically glued to the bottom of the container. Try as I might, I could not pry them loose, until one ripped in half, yielding a small meatball of dubious composition.
It was an outrage. To my friends’ embarrassment, I stood up and shouted at our waiter:
“What are these?”
“Dumplings,” he said.
“These,” I said, “are not dumplings. The skin is too thick. The meat is too small. It’s been cooked too long. The folding is done all wrong.” My friends begged me to stop, and the manager threatened to call the police.