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My God: The Scallion Pancake Breakfast Burrito From Saturday Dumpling Club

More like Saturday Burrito Club.

12:19 PM CST on December 11, 2023

Em Cassel|

A live look at how your author felt upon biting into this burrito.

Saturday Dumpling Club does not oversell its new breakfast item. It’s listed simply alongside SDC’s dumplings and wontons: “Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Scallion Pancake Breakfast Burrito.” There’s no flashy little star that says “new!” There’s not even a photo—you’d have to head to Instagram for visual evidence that this thing exists.

Lacking any flashing gifs or banner ads that promise “THIS WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE,” you might casually add the burrito ($15), recommended by a friend, to your order of Tingly Mala Beef Dumplings ($20) for pickup on Saturday morning. What the heck, you’ll need breakfast anyway. 

As you drive to Dots Gray Kitchen in Near North, where Saturday Dumpling Club hosts its weekly Minneapolis pick-ups, perhaps you justifiably think the scallion pancake will be the showstopper. It’s called a scallion pancake breakfast burrito, after all, and I mean, I’d never had a burrito wrapped in a scallion pancake, have you? 

And you wouldn’t exactly be wrong. The pancake itself is lovely: soft, sturdy, scalliony. A little more toothsome than your standard flour tortilla, and with a bit more structural integrity. But as with any burrito wrapping, the pancake is merely a vessel here; it surrounds an honest-to-god symphony of flavors awaiting inside. 

The first bite is a bit of a surprise, sweeter than just about any breakfast burrito I’ve had and lightly spicy. There’s a smear of pepper jelly in here that oozes wonderfully into the gooey, melty white American cheese.

(Fair warning: I made a tactical mistake in eating mine. Don’t unwrap the foil all at once!)

But the most mind-blowing element of this breakfast burrito isn’t even listed in the name—it’s chef Mike Yuen’s Chinese giardiniera. I had to head to Saturday Dumpling Club’s website to figure out everything that’s going on here. Luckily, you can buy it by the tub

The giardiniera is a blend of cauliflower, celery, fresno peppers, and garlic, with “garlic chives for a boost of flavor, gai lan stems for more crunch, ginger, and five spice-pickled red onions for punch.” It’s spicy and bright, crunchy and crispy, and more addicting than even the most carefully lab-designed snack foods. I kept going back for bite after bite, long after the densely packed burrito had satisfied my Saturday morning hunger. 

Yuen’s Chinese giardiniera shines especially bright because every other ingredient here is classically perfect. The thick-cut bacon is cooked through but tender, adding a smoky richness. The hash browns at the core are cooked to a crispy and salty ideal, and somehow resist getting soggy. The eggs are eggs: fluffy, soft, creamy.  

Like the best Chinese food, the burrito perfectly balances savory, sweet, sour, spicy, and salty. With so many textures and tastes layered upon each other, it almost confounds your palate with flavor. And though that may sound overwhelming, the breakfast burrito just gets more magical as you eat on. Each bite reveals a new essence; no two are the same. I’ve truly never quite tasted anything quite like it.

And then you leave with dumplings! The ideal way to kick off a weekend. I will be doing it again. Perhaps as soon as this Saturday.

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