The Jakarta Post
The many types of dim sum offered at Tien Chao restaurant, Gran Melia Jakarta, South Jakarta. (JP/Keshie Hernitaningtyas)
Among the many types of Chinese cuisine, dim sum is arguably one of the most popular. Convenient for breakfast, lunch or dinner, it can easily be found everywhere in the capital, from five-star hotel restaurants to street food stalls.
However, this dish, which comes in different types and flavors, was initially not an everyday choice available for everyone.
"[The history of dim sum] dates back to the Tang Dynasty, where it was enjoyed during afternoon tea," Gran Meliá Jakarta guest chef Zhang said at Tien Chao restaurant on Monday.
"Rich people used dim sum to worship their god at the palace or at home."
Read also: Six rules for eating dim sum like a pro
Different kinds of dim sum can be found in different parts of China.
"Most Chinese people do not make their own dim sum though, because you need special equipment to make it," added chef Zhang, who is based in Gran Meliá Xian, China.
Additionally, making dim sum requires a lot of skill.
"A good dim sum chef can produce up to 3,000 per day," added the hotel's executive chef, Ingo Oldenburg
From clear chicken dumplings to strawberry buchi (rice cake) prepared by chef Zhang using traditional techniques, an all-you-can-eat dim sum package for Rp 248,000++ (US$18) per person is currently available at Tien Chao restaurant from April 16 to 22 for lunch and dinner.