Early Sunday morning, crowds gather amongst the steps of this restaurant to wait for a seat. Towards the busier afternoon, numbered tickets are handed out to ensure that it’s a smooth process (yes, hungry yum-cha goers can sometimes make a scene if the queue is unjustified). Once our number is called, we feel a sense of pride… as though we’ve just won exclusive entrance to a celebrity fested event. I felt everyone’s envy as we were hushed into the busy restaurant.
Immediately, we begun pointing at dishes we’d like order. Today, my yum-cha companion is Zen. With both of us speaking poor Chinese, we naturally order in English. I found that the majority of waitresses were able to describe the dishes with 2 words or less. I was often told that the food was “different” or “very nice”.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - seafood and vegetable dumplings

Combination seafood and vegetable dumplings.
These are my all-time favourite.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - inside the seafood and vegetable dumplings

I love the light twist of the coriander…

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - taro puff

Taro Puff
My second most favourite yum-cha item is the taro puff. I was extremely disappointed with this version, which looked bald in comparison to the normal thick lacy & crispy exterior.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - inside the taro puff

Inside the taro puff reveals a contrasting soft interior of pork mince and shitake mushroom.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - scallop dumplings

Scallop dumplings

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - inside the scallop dumplings

… which are filled with lots of whole scallops! As you do, I love my yum cha foods with lots of chilli sauce.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - prawns in rice noodle sheet

Har Cheung Fun, which translates to prawns rice noodle.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - inside prawns in rice noodle sheet

Prawns hide inside these sheets of rice noodle… The soy was nice and sweet, and the rice noodle sheets were soft and silky. But inside, there were prawns… when I truely had wanted to wait for the ones with the deep fried batter.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - prawn dumplings

The notorious prawn dumplings.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - inside the prawn dumplings

The inside goodness of whole prawns and bamboo shoots.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - chicken feet

Chicken feet (aka. Fung Jao). These too were a miss. The marinade was overpowering… and it was too glutinous for my liking.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - pork and shrimp dumplings (siu mai)

Pork and shrimp dumplings (Siu Mai). Too meaty and too dry… but Siu Mai have never been a hit with me.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - egg tarts

Egg tart… just the way I like it… with a flaky puff pastry exterior.

Crystal Seafood Restaurant - interior

And inside the restaurant…
Overall, we were charged a little over $40… which I thought was pretty pricey for the quality and quantity! I’ll be sure to post up the over-due entry on Emperor’s Garden – Yum Cha soon…
Crystal Seafood Restaurant on Urbanspoon
Crystal Seafood Restaurant, Strathfield
Shop 29/11 The Boulevarde, Strathfield.
Opens for Yum cha from 11am – 3pm on weekdays and from 11am – 3pm on weekends.

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Jennifer is the founder of I Ate My Way Through. Growing up in the multicultural melting pot of Sydney’s Inner West as a second generation Australian (of Vietnamese refugee parents of Teochew Chinese ancestry), Jen has always had a deep curiosity about global cuisines, culinary heritage and the cultural assimilation of immigrants. For Jen and her family, food is always at the centre of all celebrations, life events and milestones. A lover of the finer things in life, as well as cheap eats, her blogging ethos is all about empowering and inspiring people to expand their culinary repertoire. These days, you'll most likely find Jen blogging about slow & intentional living On The Slow Lane and sharing what she knows now about mindful parenting and play-based learning at Mama's Got This.


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