The Dumpling Lady, a popular vendor at the NoDa Farmers Market and Atherton Mill, opened up a portable kitchen last week and is serving up authentic Szcheuan style dumplings and noodles at an affordable price of $6-$9 per entrée.
Owner and head chef Zhang Qian started The Dumpling Lady to bring Szechuanese home cooking to the people of Charlotte after moving to the city last year.
She became a vendor at the NoDa Farmers Market and quickly gained a following for her scratch-made dumplings made from family recipes.
The fact that she uses only fresh locally sourced ingredients from local farmers markets helped set her apart from other street food and make her a local foodie favorite. Qian was inspired by her success to open a kitchen to serve an expanded menu to a greater number of people.
The rotating menu offers something for all tastebuds, including dishes with a variety of seafood, meats, and vegetarian options.
The pork dumplings combine the rich, savory flavor of soft pork belly with sweet local honey in a bite-sized pocket of fresh dough, and will appeal to even the most finicky of eaters.
The Neijiang beef noodles are a milder but no less delicious dish, perfect for the upcoming chilly weather. Tender beef is stewed with bamboo shoots and sweet mild spices for several hours before being tossed with soft chewy noodles.
The tender veggie dumplings are a vegan option, and gluten-friendly dumplings will be rotating into the menu in the near future. Menu items will change seasonally and are posted on the Dumpling Lady’s Facebook page.
You can find the Dumpling Lady’s portable restaurant at the NoDa Company Store on Thursdays and Fridays from 4 p.m. to 8:30 pm, and Saturdays from 12:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m..
They will also continue to sell frozen dumplings at both the NoDa Farmers Market and Atherton Mill Market on Saturday Mornings.
Gluten free dumpling photo courtesy of Qian Zhang