Yum Cha at The Market Plaza Food Court in Adelaide
The Seng Kee Yum Cha stall at The Market Plaza Food Court has always been our go-to for a quick yum cha lunch. The food court is conveniently located between the atrium next to the Adelaide Central Market, and Moonta Place. It’s great for families, as you can pop in without a booking; you get to eat straight away (without the wait at a restaurant); the food court is lively and there’s no tablecloths for young ones to pull; plus the yum cha here is fab!
After weeks of being closed, Seng Kee Yum Cha re-opened for take-away from Thursday 20 April 2020. When we visited that weekend, there were only just a few stalls open at the food court. COVID-19 restrictions are still in place so take-away is allowed but dining in at food courts is still prohibited (tables and chairs have been removed).
Our favourite yum cha picks from here are:
BBQ Pork Buns (char siu bao)
BBQ Pork Patries
Cheung Fun (prawns or pork rolled inside a large steamed rice noodle wrap)
Red Bean Buns
Fried Pork Dumpling
Salt & Pepper Squid
Make sure you get some chilli flakes in oil for dipping.
Char Siu Bao/BBQ Pork Buns
Char Siu Bao/BBQ Pork Buns (pictured below) are my kids’ favourite yum cha dish. To be honest, it’s about the only thing they eat. As a result they’ve tried them at every yum cha restaurant we’ve been to, and over the years we’ve been to most around Adelaide. These are probably their favourite. Just to explain how much my kids love Char Siu Baos – we actually named our white fluffy Maltese Shih Tzu puppy, Bao (Xiao Bao is his full name, meaning ”Little Bun”).
For those who don’t know, the white steamed bun is slightly sweet, soft and fluffy, and it’s filled with bbq pork cooked in a sauce made generally with hoi sin sauce, oyster sauce and sugar. In the old days the pork filling would be a red colour – this was usually added food colouring as red is a lucky colour in Chinese culture. These days most yum cha places don’t add red colouring anymore. As someone who grew up with the red coloured filling, the ”modern” ones actually seem a bit strange being a browny colour. 😂
My kids also love eating these steamed buns without any filling (called Mantou – which is available at many Chinese restaurants).
Prawn Dumplings (pictured below) are my favourite. I could eat so many of these any time. Dipped with the chilli oil, they are the best!
They are very popular at Seng Kee Yum Cha – they never seem to have enough, probably because one serve is just not enough for anybody. You may have to wait 5-10 minutes for more to be steamed, but it’s totally worth it.
For a quick yum cha lunch if you’re shopping at the Adelaide Central Market, this is a great food stop. And even if you’re not shopping, you can also drop by any day, even on Sundays for a quick lunch as they are open from around 11am to 3pm then. During the Coronavirus restrictions, you can grab take-away and eat at home for lunch, or heat it up later for dinner.
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Image Source: All photos by Play & Go
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