Taste of Shunde
Taste of Shunde is one of Sydney’s most unsung restaurants. Ever heard of it? It’s unlikely unless you’re from Shunde (a district of the city of Foshan, near Guangzhou in south-east China); you’re a food nerd with a love of southern-Chinese cuisine; or you live in Kogarah.
Shunde cuisine is a niche style of Cantonese food tied to its very specific place of origin, so it’s surprising for Sydney to have even a single dedicated restaurant.
While the menu may have a few Cantonese staples, the rest consists of Shunde specialties seen almost nowhere else in Sydney. Dishes such as fried milk with prawns and pine nuts (“fried milk” is the translation ¬– it’s more like a milky and velvety egg-white-heavy scramble); silky fish dumplings swimming in delicate broth; and roast goose (or duck, depending on the season). The latter is the restaurant’s showpiece – order it solo with cheung fun (steamed Cantonese rice noodles) on the side, or in the centre of a halo of prettily arranged vegetables.
Despite the variable service here, expect to pay a bit more than probably every other shopping-mall Chinese restaurant in Sydney. That’s far from a complaint though; these are recipes that require extremely specialised knowledge and a lot of skill. Also, where else in Sydney can you order a roast goose, an iced bitter-melon salad and stir-fried stuffed lotus?
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