Name: Wu Gok
Primary Ingredient(s): Taro, Pork, Mushrooms
Type of Dish: Dumpling
Method of Preparation: Deep Fried
Trying to explain wu gok to someone who has never tried it is akin to trying to explain a rock concert to one who didn’t attend it. Yes, there are certain key aspects which can easily be explained. But how they were experienced? That is a little more difficult.
As far as the dumpling itself? After boiling the taro root, you mash it into a paste, and them wrap it around a filling of some sort, typically some savory ground pork. Toss the dumpling into the fryer, and the results are pictured here.
There are two distinct aspects at play that make this dim sum item a particular treat. Flavor-wise you have the sweetness of the taro root contrasting nicely with the savoriness of the ground pork. Then you have the texture contrast, with the deep-fried crunchiness of the outside balanced against the soft, succulent (and piping hot!) center.
Be warned that the taro root “dough” can finish off with a pasty texture, depending upon the skill of the cooks in the back. Additionally, the ground pork filling recipe will change from restaurant to restaurant. But made well, this treat can easily end up on the regular rotation of even the most cynical of dim sum customers.