December 22, 2010

Dumplings with Noodles in Brown Sauce

Since my first dumplings about two years ago, I haven't been able to get enough of them. The dumplings here may very well be the BEST dumplings around: a thin enough skin to see right through to the juicy pork filling inside, I first and foremost appreciate that the skin of the dumpling is substantial enough to more than adequately hold the dumpling together, yet it isn't thick and doughy, giving you something to chew on besides the pork and vegetable mixture within.

Dumplings piled high on top of noodles dredged in a thick, rich brown sauce - served, of course, in a "big bowl" (hey! That's the name of the restaurant!) - is food for the body and the soul. Dumplings to me are a great comfort (/lazy day) food, but I always feel great inside and out after a meal of Big Bowl's dumplings, and I think it has to do with the freshness of the ingredients. The vegetables, steamed just right, add such a freshness to the dark brown sauce dish that you feel like you're genuinely eating a healthy meal. And the dumplings pop with the flavor of fresh scallions and herbs mixed into the pork so that you can't help but smile as you're eating. Though the BEST Dumpling Soup at Big Bowl will always have a special place in my heart, when I'm in the mood for noodles instead, this is a great alternative.

Where to enjoy this yourself:

Big Bowl Noodle House
418 East College Avenue
State College, Pennsylvania

My awesome roommate Katie last year introduced me to Big Bowl, which is now one of my favorite restaurants, as well as the dumpling soup. This place is not to be confused with the fancy, reservations-only eatery you may find online if you google "big bowl:" this is a tiny little place sub-terra just of the main intersection of downtown State College.

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