Do it right…

When I bought some dim sum delights from that celebrated place in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Foo Phing, to bring home to Sibu a long long time ago, they were quite concerned about the quality of their products and kept reminding me that I should steam them for only 4 minutes, if I remember correctly – no more, no less.

I could understand their concern as more often than not, people would just dump everything in the steamer and steam them till kingdom come, not bothered to keep time at all and they would all end up over-steamed, the skin all soft and mushy and then they would grumble about the quality of what they had bought.

Well, in my previous post, I mentioned that my friend, Annie in KL, went to Jakar, Sarikei and she bought me some sio bee (meat dumplings) from there…

Jakar sio bee
*Archive photo*

They were still in the freezer when I wrote that post but not anymore.

The first thing I did when I took them out to defrost was  to open the pack…

Defrost, pack open

…so that the condensation and the moisture collecting inside would not wet and spoil the skin.

It would be best to use a flat plate or tray as sometimes, during the steaming, the water from the steam would collect in it and that would also be bad for the skin at the bottom of the sio bee. It would not be so bad if you are using those bamboo baskets like those at the dim sum places but I guess most of us do not have those at home.

I used a little cooking oil to grease the tray I was using – yes, the people at Foo Phing did tell me to do that – so the dumplings would not stick to it. Having done that, I placed them in the tray…

Place in greased tray or plate

…a little bit apart from one another…

Avoid any contact

…so they would not all stick together eventually.

When the water had started boiling, I placed the tray in the wok and waited a little bit longer, 5 minutes to be exact, after which, I opened the lid of the wok (my steamer is a little too small for the tray)…

Release the steam

…to release the steam.

I just took out what I wanted to eat…

Ready to eat

…and put back the lid, leaving the rest inside to keep warm in the residual heat.

I still had a bit of the very nice and very very spicy chili sauce from Payung so I had the dumplings with it…

Best served with chili sauce

…and yes, I would say they were really very good! I could detect the special seafood sweetness – no, I do not think they used prawns. Those would be too expensive so my guess is it was fish, bay ka (ikan tenggiri/mackerel) usually.

I hear they do sell these sio bee

Jakar sio bee, in natural light

…at some places in Sibu but I never paid attention as to where exactly. I certainly wouldn’t mind buying some more should I happen to see them around here.

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

11 thoughts on “Do it right…”

  1. Oh. Soi bee from Jakar? That looked good. Everything now in frozen form. So convenient but better don’t keep so long in freezer.

    Should be fine as long as there is no blackout but best eaten soonest, of course.

  2. I love sio bee and I can eat a lot of those. I have seen frozen Sibu sio bee being sold at the Stutong wet market. Don’t know any good or not.

    Dunno where those are from, lots in Sibu, everywhere but not all that nice, most of them. So far, the best ones would be those from the New Capital Restaurant but they’re not all that cheap, but they’re quite big though…and there are some good ones that I know of. Most are not really worth bothering about.

  3. Should have get you more. And we are not sure is it good. I only had two, like I said never feel hungry when in Sibu and I bought this after I had the famous prawn mee, I was too full to appreciate this siew mai.

    I heated them up when I woke up before the break of dawn and had them for breakfast. Don’t think it was because I was very hungry – they were good, nicer than many that they sell here and there in Sibu but yes, we do have good ones too like the ones at New Capital.

  4. We have quite a selection of these frozen goodies here too. Very useful to keep in the freezer.

    We do get some here as well at the supermarkets but I don’t think I’ve bought any to try. So easy to go for the freshly-made ones around here. Definitely a whole lot nicer.

  5. Yummy! I used to buy those frozen siew mai sold at the supermarket. They were not bad at all, so convenient.

    We get those at banquets in restaurants – one of the selections in the first dish, the Four Seasons…but ours, we get a lot, 6-8 perhaps.

  6. I never enjoyed any frozen packed dumplings before in my life. Good to know this is good… I like foo phing when it wasn’t commercialised yet. Now I will try to avoid at all cost… too pricy! LOL

    Is it? I’ve not been there for years and years now but my late mum’s caregiver, from Sabah, bought some when she went back to KK not too long ago. They were still very nice! Ah well!!! KK is not a cheap place, as bad as KL – definitely not as cheap as Sibu.

  7. happy easter! will you be having dim sum for your easter lunch? 🙂

    No, I went round searching for these here…but to no avail. Will have to wait and see if anyone’s going to Sarikei or Jakar. 😦

  8. I wish we had that one here

    I have not found it around here but I’m sure those would be dirt cheap if converted into your currency. We do have our own as well, very nice too, prices ranging from around 50-60 cents each in NZD.

All opinions expressed in my blog are solely my own, that is my prerogative - you may or may not agree, that is yours. To each his/her own. For food and other reviews, you may email me at

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