Siomai or Shumai is a traditional Chinese dumpling served in dim sum. In China there are two varieties of this dish which are the Cantonese and Jinghan. The difference between the two varieties is that the Cantonese is made out of pork, shrimp and black mushroom covered in a thin sheet of dough while the Jiangnan region version is quite different as the dough is larger and tougher than the Cantonese version and the filling is made out of marinated pork pieces in glutinous rice and steamed with some lard, the size is also bigger compared to the counterpart. Shumai also exists in Japan but the ingredients are different as well as its preparation, they only use pork and is always minced unlike the Chinese version which is finely chopped hence it has that distinct texture compared to the Chinese variant.
The most common of them is the Cantonese version, and usually the siomai’s that are sold outside of China most probably have originated from it like the Philippine siomai. Having said that the Philippine version is not an exact copy as it has its own uniqueness, usually the Philippine siomai dipped in a light soy sauce with chilli oil and spicy garlic mince squeezed with lemon or calamansi. It’s so common in Philippines almost all food courts in malls have a dedicated stall for this; I remembered my favourite was Henlin’s and Chowking’s siomai.