Noodle House 38-12 Prince Street, Flushing.
This is kind of tricky...In Enlish you only see "Noodle House" on the restaurant, but the CHinese big letters say "Nanxiang Xiao Long Bao" , Nanxiang being one of the big names in soup dumplings in Shanghai. The name is entirely a separate issue, of course. On with the food.
I was excited when I walked in not because of the name, but because I think I saw the older woman dough maker that wowed me with her potstickers years ago and then disappeared since...(I believe that was when the now long gone Yantze River restaurant first opened)
Anyhow, the xiaolong bao I order to take home didn't get eaten until almost 2 hours later, so it's not the best indication. The skin is very thin and delicate, the filling not too salty, but definitely with a lot of soup in the soup dumplings. The Red Bean pancake I got were little silver dollar sized flakey pastries studded with fresh sesame seeds that actually had sesame fragrance. Nice.
So the next morning I returned to try their Shaobing Youtiao. The waitress was not very cheerful about informing me of the temporary outage of Shaobing (Sesame wheat cake). I ordered the sweet Douhua (silky soft tofu) with the youtiao (fried crueller) but asked for the shaobing whenever it can arrive. I had faith in the shaobing because the night before I saw people ordering the shaobing/sliced beef sandwich and it looked really well made. My friend ordered the turnip pancake.
The Douhua came. It was the best texture of douhua I have had. Unlike most places that overheats and make the douhua beehive-like in texture, this was melt in your mouth soft, yet held its own shape.
It actually had a nice soy fragrance.
The Youtiao at first seemed doughier than the usual ones in restaurant around here, but upon subsequent bites, it seemed more delicate and wholesome, and much less greasy.
The turnip pancake looked different from most, too. Also Silver-dollar sized, puffy and flakey on top, the bottom side was studded with white and black sesame seeds, the inside filled lightly with shredded turnips and maybe a few bits of minced ham. It would have been perfect had the turnip been daikon radish instead, as the turnip was a bit more stringy than i had hoped. Still, it was very well made pastry.
The Shaobing came late but not too late. It was as good as it looked. Full of flavor of the sesame and fresh dough with tender insides and flakey shells. Had I not been with a vegetarian I would have ordered the shaobing with beef slices.
If I can make it there next time, I will have to try the potstickers...that will be the proverbial "glass slippers" that will tell me if the pastry chef was indeed the same person that went missing years ago...