Oh Bao! at Mae Kong rolls out classic dumplings on the table in Kolkata
WHAT WAS MAJORLY missing in the Chinese New Year menus at fine-diners specialising in Chinese cuisine in the city was a dedicated section for steamed bao. Filling that space deliciously is Mae Kongs’s Oh Bao! festival.
Sanjay Tamang, Chef De Partie and baoist at Kenilworth Hotel’s fine-diner, has curated a compact menu that will treat you to a range of classic baos. “We felt that our patrons need to be treated to some classic options of bao and hence, we curated a menu with veg, non-veg and even open options,” offers the chef.
Steaming hot The dim sum baskets brought the good news of hot dumplings on the table, and we sampled quite a few of them. Served with Cantonese Chilli and Gyoza sauce, our first bite was the Japanesestyle grilled Chicken Teriyaki Bao. The only open bao in the menu, with the crunch of fresh lettuce, pickled cucumber, roasted sesame seeds and cashew nuts enveloped is a fluffy flour-based steamed bun, notable for its pieces of chicken cooked in the versatile teriyaki sauce.
We swiftly moved on the closed dumplings with Halved Chicken and Pak Choi Kimchi. Filled with minced chicken and prepared in oyster sauce, the bao, topped with a dollop of Korean kimchi sauce, lent it a tangy and sweet profile. In the Mushroom Oakwood Bao, the filling of shitake and butter varieties had a buttery flavour that held the red curry spices and zesty kaffir lime leaves quite well. The brush of chocolate on top of the bao meted out a woody effect, and also gave it a slight hint of sweetness.
Among the veg options, check out their simple Steamed Vegetable Bao stuffed with mushroom, dried bean curd and baby pak choi. They do have pork bao and we suggest that you don’t miss the toothsome Cha Siu Cantonese Bao,which is appealing to both the eyes and taste buds. A lovely pink hue achieved with beetroot and a spiky texture gives way to tender and juicy diced pork, tossed in oriental sauce and spring onions.
Rs 2,400+ for two.