Restaurant: Jia San Soup Pau
Location: 93 Bei Yuan Men, Xi’an, China. +86 29 8725 7507
Date: August 1, 2018
Cuisine: Halal Chinese
After Beijing we move on to Xi’an, the oldest of China’s great capitals and the eastern terminus of the silk road. Xi’an, now a city of roughly 15 million, has been an important city for perhaps 5000 years! It’s the capital of Shaanxi province and of course home to Shaanxi cuisine.
In it’s western position in China it’s home to many Chinese muslims and a vibrant “muslim street” filled with restaurants and snacks.
Like random kabobs!
Or what the Chinese call “naan breads” (puffier muslim breads).
Somewhat afraid of the street meats we decided to have dinner here at this recommended, popular, and very colorful spot.
As far as I can tell, it’s name is Jia San Soup Pau.
It was so popular we had to go up to the 3rd floor to get a table.
Lazy susan etc.
They specialize in these western XLB, which are somewhat more akin to Afghan Muntoo. These were vegetable filled muntoo.
And mutton muntoo — no pork at this place, it’s halal. The lamb ones were delicious with a very delicate pasta, a nice pronounced lamb-quality, and tons of juice.
Sesame noodles. Had a bit of mustardy punch too.
Spicy Tripe. I’m not sure which animal’s stomach we ate here. Lamb? Maybe ox? It had that tripe texture and was a bit firm and not crazy chewy. The sauce was STRONG. An intense smack in the face of chili and sesame. Really good sauce. I could only eat so much tripe but I would love this sauce on noodles.
Ox tail soup muntoo. Amazingly good juice meat dumplings.
Steamed greens with a bit of soy and ginger flavor. Quite nice.
Fried chicken. With a bit of spicy powder.
Lamb, garlic, celery, poatoes, and pepper hand pulled noodles. Underneath this very homestyle dish was a pile of excellent hand pulled noodles. This is a very Shaanxi style dish.
Jia San Soup Pau was an excellent place. Good rustic food and hearty flavors.
Back out on the street time for snacks and dessert like this “spicy lamb burger” which in Chinese might be 肉夹馍, a name that sounds like “Rodger Moore” (maybe Rho jaa mo or something like that). This one was lamby, very salty, and liberally greased with chili oil.
My eye was drawn to this very interesting looking dry ice dessert steaming in the cauldron. I called them dragon balls.
It’s handed to you steaming too. Turns out they are just puffed rice balls, with no flavor, frozen in liquid nitrogen. You crunch on the ball, trying vainly not to freezer burn your mouth and exhale like this: