I haven’t been dishing out too many home-cooked foods lately, as you all know, I was busy with Menu for Hope 4. The campaign ended with a whopping US$82,611.00 raised, so this means that I am back to my regular posting schedule and will be serving up even more scrumptious and mouthwatering food content for your reading and viewing pleasure.
Today, I would like to introduce you to a well-known Hangzhou dish called Longjing Xia Ren (龙井虾仁) or literally, Dragon Well Tea Shrimp. Infused with the aromatic and highly priced–and valued–Longjing tea, this dish pleases one’s palate with the lingering fragrance of the tea and the crunchy texture of the shrimp…
Longjing (Dragon Well) is a famous variety of green tea from Hangzhou (杭州) in the Zhejiang province in China. Renowned for its high quality and intensely fragrant body, Longjing tea is well regarded as one of the most famous teas produced in China. For your information, this tea is priced at US$40.00/lb or more in the tea shops here in the US.
I first had Longjing Xia Ren (龙井虾仁) in a Hangzhou restaurant in Beijing; my Beijing friend told me that Hangzhou cuisine is superior and one of the best in China and that I had to try it out. Prior to that, my friends in Shanghai also raved about the delicate cooking style of Hangzhou and that it’s the “secret” why Shanghainese foods are so delectable. (Due to its proximity to Hangzhou, chefs in Shanghai have been adopting and incorporating the best Hangzhou elements into Shanghainese cooking.) I couldn’t agree more after the first bite of the famed Dongbo Rou (东波肉/braised pork belly) and this very fine Longjing Xia Ren (龙井虾仁).
While the original recipe calls for tiny river shrimp native to that region, I opted for raw, peeled, and frozen baby shrimp–which coincidently is an import from Malaysia. The frozen shrimp lends that crunchy texture that I was looking for. With the simplest of ingredients, a wonderful dish was created and superb flavor delivered. I especially love that bitter tint of Longjing tea in the shrimp; it was out-of-this-world.
This Dragon Well Tea Shrimp will go well with the following recipes:
- Minced Chicken with Pork Rolls
- Pork Ribs and Lotus Roots Soup
- Steamed Scallops with Fermented Black Beans
- Stir-fried Chive Buds