Saturday, January 24, 2015

Shanghai Chinese Restaurant

It occurred to me the other day that I hadn't ever posted about some of the eateries my family frequents. It's not as exciting as visiting new places and trying new food, but there is a very good reason we keep coming back. One of these places is Shanghai Chinese Restaurant -one of my family's go to places.

Clockwise from top left: Smoked Egg with Tofu - $10, Spicy Fish Slices - $12, Chicken Cooked in Wine - $12, Sweet and Sour Spareribs - $10
We start off with the cold dishes, which are designed to whet the appetite. Each bite sized portion bursts with flavour.

The pungent smoked egg (which is actually a century egg), soy sauce and a bit of sugar balance perfectly to bring a powerful punch to the otherwise tasteless tofu. The dried shrimp also provides a nice crunch to the dish.

Despite the name, the fish slices are not actually spicy. Nevertheless, it is my mother's favourite dish - the dish has a strong umami flavour which penetrates through every piece. Beware of fish bones though!

The chicken pieces cooked in wine are incredibly soft and tender. The dish is served cold and has a delicate hint of shaoxing wine.

Mine and Jason's ultimate favourite cold dish is the spareribs. The sweet and sour flavours are well balanced and the chewy texture is makes for a great appetizer.


Fried Beef with Deep Fried Bread - $18
Stir fried Chinese donuts may sounds like a weird phenomenon, but it totally works. The texture of the crunchy donuts, lightly coated with sauce, are a fantastic contrast to the tender beef. 


Chili Chicken
The fragrant chili chicken is served over a flame and comes with bean curd skin, lotus root, celery, pepper and a LOT of chili (obviously). The result is something mouth numbingly wonderful.


Sigua with preserved pork
To combat the strong tasting dishes, we ordered the lightly garlicky sigua. If you haven't come across sigua before, it is a soft and fibrous vegetable which takes on the flavour of whatever it's cooked with - in this case, preserved pork and garlic. 


Baby Spinach in Soup with Preserved Egg - $20
The baby spinach may not look fantastic, but the preserved egg, mushroom and garlic lend to a very light soup. The egg white doesn't add too much to the dish.


Chinese Rice Cake
The rice cake is also a delicate dish with only two extra ingredients - pork and cabbage. The chewy rice cake is a great alternative to rice.


Salty Egg Yolks with Prawn Balls - $28
The prawn balls are the seafood equivalent of popcorn chicken. The salty egg yolks add a creaminess to the prawns and are incredibly moreish. 


Wontons and Chicken Casserole - $22
When we have guests joining us, we order the wontons and chicken casserole. This hearty dish is exactly as it sounds - juicy wontons with tender chicken pieces. There are also pieces of cabbage which bring a nice sweetness to the soup. 

Like I said, there is a very good reason we keep coming back -we always leave satisfied.

Shanghai Chinese Restaurant can be found at the Northcote Shopping Centre, 49 Pearn Cresent, Northcote.