Sunday 18 November 2012
Wu Gok 芋角 - A Dim Sum Legend
When I saw this list of Top 5 dim sum, I let off a few ai-yahs! and shook my fist angrily at my computer. It's not that any of the dim sum listed are unworthy, but limiting a must-order list to five dishes is, quite frankly, ridiculous. I mean who orders just five different varieties of dim sum when going to yum cha? Moreover, the list didn't have any deep-fried dishes. What's that all about? Who doesn't order deep-fried dim sum?
In particular, one deep fried dim sum has a special place in my heart: wu gok 芋角 (on English-language menus, these are often listed as taro croquettes or yam croquettes). These croquettes are to fried dim sum what har gau are to steamed dim sum, and along with cheung fun these three classics form the 'Holy Trinity of Dim Sum'. (Yes I am well aware how ridiculous that sentence is, but since when have I ever had a sense of proportion when it comes to food?)
Wu gok, when properly cooked, has a wonderful frilly crisp outer that gives way to a soft fluffy layer of mashed taro before yielding to a filling of ground pork and Chinese mushroom in light gravy (be warned, the filling can scold if the croquettes are fresh out of the fryer!). It is this contrast in textures that makes wu gok such a legend in my books. So the next time you are ordering dim sum, make sure the box for wu gok is ticked. After all, you wouldn't want me to go on about it like a grumpy old Chinese uncle, now would you?