Vegetarian Mock Duck – Made of tofu skin tightly rolled up with minced mushrooms inside, the recipe associated with Buddhist monks resembles sliced duck breast more than a little, right?
Full House is one of the new generation of Shanghai restaurants gradually materializing around town, places that not only do the standards of the cuisine, but also throw in some Hong Kong, Sichuan, Mandarin, Thai, and American cooking on top of that. The quality is high, especially on the iconic pork-crab soup dumplings. Here are six recommended dishes.
Spicy Baby Chicken – This Sichuan specialty, tender bone-in pieces of pullet strewn with several kinds of dry and fresh chiles, has rarely been so well made as by the Shanghaianese chefs on duty at Full House. Yes, you will break a sweat, and gladly gulp down glasses of water and thimbles of hot tea in an attempt to dispel the burn. No luck.
Minced Pork and Crab Meat Ball in Special Sauce – More commonly known as lion heads, these meatballs are soft and Teutonic, and bathe in a yellowish fluid that keeps them moist and provides an agreeable topping for your rice. As a bonus, transparent mung bean fettuccine lurk on the bottom of the bowl.
Pan Fried Noodle Shanghai Style – Basically, a Hong Kong recipe adapted for Shanghai tastes, with lots of mushrooms, Napa cabbage (yes, that refers to Napa, California), diverse slivers of meat, in a mellow gravy over fried noodles that slowly get softer as the minutes tick by, making for a nice crunch-squish gradient.
Steamed Pork and Crab Meat Juicy Dumplings – This is the last lonely dumpling left from a steamer of six – the fabled soup dumplings of Shanghai.
Spare Ribs Wu Xi Style – Shorty pork ribs red-braised in the style of Wu Xi, a town northwest of Shanghai. The wonderfully gelatinous meat melts off the bone, and the baby bok choi make a nice contrast.
And what will you have for dessert?
French Fries – Yes, the same spice-and-starch-coated french fries found in chain restaurants in the United States are now part of Shanghai cuisine – and are we ever proud! Makes a great after-main-course savory dessert.
Enjoying the ma po tofu at Full House
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on May 1, 2013