These traditional shrimp dumplings are encased in har gow dough, glutinous dumpling skins that are opaque when raw and become luminously translucent once cooked. The pea "eyes" are purely decorative; Buddakan co-executive chef Yang Huang likes them because they make the dumplings look like little goldfish.
Although today tapas may no longer be called on to cover (tapar) your drink to protect from sherry-loving fruit flies, as they once did in 13th century Spain, these appetizer-sized bites are still the perfect snack or meal to accompany any drink.
With the addition of lemongrass, Los Angeles chef Sang Yoon brings a floral Southeast Asian note to boost the deep umami flavor of this luxurious Chinese sauce. Stir XO sauce into stir-fries or add it to a wok with fried crabs or shrimp.