Vanessa’s Dumplings: Sesame Pancake with Roast Pork

Vanessa’s Dumplings
220 E 14th St
(between 2nd Ave & 3rd Ave)
New York, NY 10003
Best $3 you’ll ever spend. The sesame “pancake” is made just like the pancakes (I hate calling them pancakes because they are nothing like cake. They are more like breads. In Chinese there is a special word for them, “饼”) they have in Beijing. Slightly crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Cut in half and stuffed with cucumbers, carrots, and roast pork. The veggies are doused with a homemade sauce that has a vinegar base. The roast pork is not what roast pork typically is at places in the U.S. (usually roast pork equates to the cantonese char siu or 叉烧). It is more like a Taiwanese roast pork… Deliciously marinated pork belly that is cooked for hours. The result is a juicy, flavorful, and extremely tender meat.

I have never had this particular sandwich in China… Not sure where it’s from but it is delicious. I chatted with the chef as he was making my sandwich. Once he heard I was from Beijing, he stuffed more veggies and meat into the pancake. Nom!

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