Shrimp Rice Noodles at Sun Light Bakery Corp., Dish No. 89
For $2, it's one hell of a deal. Two servings and you're totally stuffed.
Sometimes known as chee cheong fun ("pig-intestine noodle" -- don't worry, it's a metaphor), flat sheets of rice noodle enfolding freshly steamed shrimp is one of the glories of the dim-sum menu. Now you don't have to wait for Sunday morning -- a newish bakery on East Broadway offers these rice noodles made to order in a range of permutations.
The menu of steamed rice noodles at Sun Light (click to enlarge)
Sun Light Bakery Corp. is a conventional Chinatown bakery, but if you go in the left-hand door rather than the right, you'll find yourself in a teeny refectory, where a cook/cashier will make you three kinds of Hong Kong snacks: rice-noodle rolls, dainty English sandwiches on white bread, or congee with a similar roster of ingredients.
The fabrication of the noodles as you watch is nothing short of amazing. The cook pours a white fluid that looks exactly like milk into one of the steam-box trays, drops in a few shrimp, and then pushes the drawer back into the metal box. Steam escapes. She reopens the drawer after a couple of minutes, and the fluid has solidified into one gigantic thin and floppy white noodle. She scrapes it off with something that looks like what you use to get the snow off your windshield, which results in a pile of fluffy rice noodles turned one upon the other like pleats in a skirt. The shrimp are under there somewhere. Squirt on the soy and get going!
Sun Light Bakery Corp. 180 East Broadway 212-608-8899
Yes, the six shrimp are under there somewhere!
Go through the left-hand door.
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