Sometimes, the only problem with a Chinese menu is that there are just too many tempting choices vying for your attention. We all tend to follow the tradition of ordering a starter or two, a main and an accompanying dish. While that allows for plenty of variety on your plate, you might feel you're missing out on something.
So next time you're in the mood for Chinese food, why not break with tradition and just order starters? No-one's going to judge you for this break of protocol; and this way, you can order five or six starters and have a tasting extravaganza!
What, then, are the best Chinese starters that Dubai has on offer? Let's check them out!
1. Hot and sour soup
Hot and sour soup is a great way to start a Chinese feast, and it's very popular in China; often eaten in winter for its warming properties. What goes into a hot and sour soup really depends on the chef who's making it, but there's usually a combination of meat and vegetables. The spicy and hot side comes from white pepper, which is set off by the sour of rice vinegar and soy. We recommend the Crab Meat and Corn Hot and Sour from Wokman by KitchenLab.
2. Prawn toast
It may be one that you've had plenty of times already, but you can't beat a portion of sesame prawn toast. There's something exquisite about the combination of the freshly ground prawn, chestnuts, egg and sesame on the toast, all bound together by a few seconds in the deep fat fryer. This is a dish you always want more of – don't be persuaded to share with anyone!
At the Royal Orchid, their Sesame Prawn Toast is, perhaps unsurprisingly, one of their most popular starter dishes. It's not just you that can't get enough of this sublime little starter!
One of the best finger foods in Chinese cooking has to be the wonton dumpling. As they're a bit smaller than the traditional dim sum dumpling, they make a great addition to a platter of starters. Usually, they're filled with pork, shrimp or vegetables, which have been seasoned with garlic and spices. They're not always deep-fried – often they're only steamed in China. But we happen to think that a stint in the deep fat fryer adds an extra layer of decadence to the wonton experience!
Thai Chi is a Thai and Chinese restaurant, where you can experience the best and most authentic dishes of both cuisines. On the Chinese appetizer menu, you'll find a range of dumplings and dim sum, including deep fried Shrimp Wontons, which are served with sweet and sour sauce.
Satay's another classic Chinese starter. The question is what's driving you to order it? Is it the marinated and grilled meat or fish on the skewer or the peanutty sauce you get on the side to dip it in that appeals to you most. Either way, you'll be glad you added a portion of satay to your order. At The Noodle House, there are half a dozen different satays to choose from - our pick is the Chicken Satay which comes with a spiced peanut sauce and pickled cucumber salad. Finger-lickin' good!
We can't do justice to all the fantastic Chinese starters that Dubai's Chinese restaurants have available, of course, but we think we've highlighted some of the best!
Have we convinced you? Is your next Chinese order going to be starters only? Take your pick with Deliveroo!