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Shanghai Dumplings protected
Latest Updated by 2007-03-12 10:12:17
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Xiaolongbao are made with a thin skin of dough and stuffed with a seasoned minced pork. Sesame seeds, shrimp and crab meat are usually added to the stuffing. (File Photo)

Cultural officials in Jiading District in Shanghai want their steamed dumplings listed as part of the city's Intangible Cultural Heritage.

"Nanxiang xiaolongbao is a famed brand from Jiading, however, fake Nanxiang xiaolongbao can be found everywhere in the city," said Zhou Yahong of the Jiading District Intangible Cultural Heritage Protection Office. "The essential purpose for our application is to protect the unique snack."

If local cultural authorities accept the application, Jiading District would essentially own a copyright for the steamed pork dumplings, and could decide who is allowed to use the term Nanxiang xiaolongbao on packaging and in advertisements.

If the application is successful, Nanxiang xiaolongbao will be among the first snacks named an intangible part of Shanghai's cultural heritage, and will be further recommended to the Ministry of Culture to receive nationwide protection in June.

"At present we are busy preparing the written materials for the application and filming a documentary about Nanxiang xiaolongbao," Zhou said.

Last year the State Council listed 518 items in 10 categories including folk literature, traditional medicine and folk customs as part of China's intangible cultural heritage.

Nanxiang xiaolongbao is a popular, traditional snack that originated in the town of Nanxiang in Jiading District more than 100 years ago.

Snack shop owner Huang Mingxian is believed to be the first person to make the buns. The dumplings are made with a thin skin of dough and stuffed with a seasoned minced pork. Sesame seeds, shrimp and crab meat are usually added to the stuffing.

The dumplings are then steamed in a bamboo steamer. Nanxiang xiaolongbao has earned a reputation for its thin skin, large amount of stuffing, juicy flesh, excellent taste and nice look.

Editor: Wing

By: Source: Shanghai Daily web edition
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