In Chinese, 盒子 (hézi) literally translates into box -- an edible box, of course. A typical “box” that you’ll see sold as a quick street food item consists of chopped chives and eggs (or some other variation of that) stuffed into a dough “box,” although that box is shaped more like a crescent moon. I like to think of them as the older cousin of dumplings. Both are like savory pocket pies, but hézi usually are larger, have more filling, and a crisper skin.
Turnip cakes are a classic at dim-sum restaurants, and have always been my favorite item (I save room for an entire serving for it each time...) While the more appropriate name is radish cake, they are an incredibly savory dish featuring veggies, sausages and rice flour. They're a bit of a time commitment, but nothing too extreme -- block out an hour and a half-ish, and you've got yourself some turnip cakes. And paired with some hoisin sauce and Lao Gan Ma chili crisp sauce...well, that's as good as life gets.
Tian Jiu, otherwise known as fermented cooked rice, is a popular southeast Asian tradition, as it has many uses in addition to being a great-tasting rice pudding.
Chinese egg tarts are popular treats found all over Chinatown, particularly in tea houses as a dim sum dish. Egg tarts are prominent in Guangzhou's food scene, and scholars call it the "quintessential symbol of the fusion between Cantonese and Western cultures."
White kidney beans, also known as cannellini beans, can be used to make a very creamy and delicious paste that's often used in many desserts. Here's a simple and quick recipe for white kidney bean roll cakes.
Double skin milk is a popular Cantonese dessert made of milk, egg whites, and sugar, and my mom absolutely loves it.
You can probably find these Chinese coconut milk buns at a lot of stores in Chinatown. These were a staple item in the grocery bag whenever we had the chance to go to a Chinese store. But of course, isn't it so much more fun to make things in the comfort of your own house? 🙂