Five Best Tim Ho Wan Dim Sum

Rebecca Varidel
30th May 2015

Tim Ho Wan founder and owner Chef Mak Kwai Pui visited Sydney from Hong Kong for the opening of the Tim Ho Wan Chatswood eatery, their first venue in the southern hemisphere. Tim Ho Wan (in case you were wondering) has the accolade of a Michelin star for the original Hong Kong dim sum shop. And now the restaurant group is here. Yum cha snacks - yum bring them on - although the location is kind of food court, we would pop in every day if we were working as a Chatswood office local.

Each Tim Ho Wan menu changes to agree with local tastes. In Sydney the Big 4 Heavenly Kings represented the favourite four dim sum of the owner. But what are our Sydney Scoop favourites?

1. Baked Bun with BBQ Pork

Not only is this our favourite Tim Ho Wan snack but it's also the most popular dish of the Tim Ho Wan restaurant in Sydney. It is no ordinary bun. For a start, it is baked and not steamed. A glaze of egg yolk, butter and flour is melted over the bun during the last stage of cooking to create a golden colour and a most enjoyable textural taste sensation. This BBQ Pork bun is quite something. It's first on the Tim Ho Wan Chatswood menu, and stated as the first of the big 4 Heavenly Kings.

2. Vermicelli Roll With Pig's Liver

You might be already loving vermicelli rolls. You may or may not be into offal. But this combo, of the two, is the bomb and probably our favourite dim sum at Tim Ho Wan. When we attended the official Tim Ho Wan Chatswood opening with other Sydney media, opinions were divided. Yet, within our living loving community we voted this number one. Live a little. Give it a try.

That's two of his favourite four from Chef Mak Kwai Pui. His others are Pan-Fried Carrot Cake and Steamed Egg Cake. And there are three other choices of vermicelli rolls if you are really not up for the pigs liver. Try, Vermicelli Roll with either BBQ Pork, Sesame Sauce or Shrimp. And for some reasons, Braised Chicken Feet with Abalone Sauce are also listed on this section of the menu.

In our minds a ranges across steamed and deep fried balances yum cha so here is the rest of our best five dim sum including one of each from steamed and deep fried and a dessert.

3. Spinach Dumpling with Shrimp

Getting some vegetables in your Chinese snacks is probably a good idea. Here's how. Kind of love these spinach dumplings anywhere, and - bonus- these are very good examples. And of course there is the added bonus of seafood. Other Tim Ho Wan dumplings are prawn or pork. As a seafood alternative you could try Fish Maw With Prawn Paste or the wonderful (and highly recommended) Beancurd Skin With Pork & Shrimp.

4. Wasabi Salad Prawn Dumpling

While there are spring rolls in the small deep fried section of the menu, we're heading for dumpling again. The wasabi dressing and roe make this not only a textural and tasty dish but also colourful and visually appealing.

There are 25 dishes on the Tim Ho Wan Chatswood menu including poached vegetables for those inclined. Or Congee With Pork, Century Egg and Salted Egg is also wonderful.

From the half a dozen choices of beverages the most delightful option is homemade barley water. This can be served either hot or cold.

And what would dim sum, yum cha or any meal be without a little something sweet to finish.

5. Tonic Medlar and Osmanthus Cake

These jelly squares have to be one of the most visually appealing dim sum (dessert or otherwise) around. They're also delicious. At $5.80 (with Steamed Egg Cake $5.50) they're the cheapest item on the Tim Ho Wan menu. (Other dim sum range from from $5.80 to $8.80. That's a very Chinese luck thing. There's lots of lucky '8's in the pricing.)

And talking about luck... What does Tim Ho Wan actually mean? FYI. It translates to 'add good luck' in Cantonese.