I have developed an insane craving for liu sha bao. Loosely translated, it means “flowing sand bun”. It’s really a Chinese steamed bun filled with oozing salted egg filling. My colleague introduced it to me one day when he bought a box of 20 to share in office. One bite into it and and I fell in love. This is my new favourite dessert.
I did a quick google search and found a list of recommendations of places that sold liu sha baos. since it’s a steamed bun, most of these places are invariably dim sum restaurants. The ones that my colleague bought are from Victor’s Kitchen (Sunshine Plaza) and they are amazingly good. Some reviews didn’t think they were very good because the salted egg filling is supposed to ooze out when you break the buns open, perhaps coz when served at the restaurant it’s not very hot? but both times i ate it, I tossed it into the microwave oven for a quick heat up and the filling was bubbling hot.
If there is an art to eating liu sha bao, it must be piercing the bun open with your thumbs and watching the hot yellow yumminess burst out. but be careful though, these baos (from Victor’s Kitchen) spat and spilled all over the place. I had to balance the yolk-like filling between 2 halves of the bao skin like egg yolk between 2 cracked halves of a shell. Victor’s Kitchen baos 4/5
but because Victor’s Kitchen is not in the most accessible of places (especially with the road closure at Bencoolen street now), I decided to try the baos from other restaurants. These yellow baos are from Crystal Jade Kitchen. I wandered past the Holland Village branch and popped in to ask if they had liu sha baos. To my joy they did so I bought 6 of them (3 for $3.75).
When I slowly tore the bun open and was rather disappointed. Firstly the doughy part of the bun was more like Chinese steamed cake (the kind mostly used in Chinese prayers or rituals) and less like the steamed buns served at dim sum restaurants. Hence, the bun was thicker and wetter than normal. The salted egg filling was thicker too so it didn’t flow out much. the salted egg taste was overpowering, not a fine balance of milk, butter and salted egg. Crystal Jade liu sha bao 1/5.
The search continues.