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Davis, California

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Best Farmers Market vendor: The Dumpling House

Handmade, high-quality dumplings beloved by community

On a Saturday morning in Downtown Davis, it’s hard to miss the large white tents and long aisle of stalls adjacent to Central Park. The Farmers Market, a beloved City of Davis institution established over 40 years ago, is normally frequented by university students and locals alike. Although many students have returned home, the market continues to provide fresh produce, hand-crafted treats, home-baked goods and more. 

According to Randii MacNear, the executive director of the Davis Farmers Market, staying open is essential, as the market functions as more than just a source of food for the community.

“The Farmers Market is like family to people,” MacNear said. “We’re really happy to be open, not just because the food is so amazing but because I think it really nourishes people at this time, both emotionally and physically.”

For UC Davis students, a particular favorite of the market is The Dumpling House. The establishment started as a local restaurant, serving customers for eight years, until it closed for repairs in 2018. That same year, they began offering dumplings at their new Farmers Market booth. 

“They have a huge following and people were really happy that they could find them at the market,” MacNear said.

Linda Liu, the owner of The Dumping House, enjoys selling at the market because it provides greater community interaction.

“We like it because we meet a lot of local people,” Liu said. “People like the hand-wrapped dumplings.”

The high-quality dumplings are made with a special recipe and source ingredients for their fillings from the Farmers Market. The Dumpling House also sells dumplings both fresh and frozen with UC Davis students in mind.

“We sell frozen dumplings for students that don’t have time,” Liu said. “They can cook at home.”

Whether she’s making them for the Farmers Market or a holiday with her family, Liu’s love of dumplings started at a young age when she learned to cook from her grandmother. Now a grandmother herself, she makes dumplings for her six grandchildren. 

“I make dumplings at home that I bring to my grandkids,” Liu said. “They all love my dumplings.”

Although The Dumpling House, like many other businesses, has been struggling due to the pandemic, Liu is hopeful and looks forward to the students returning to campus.

“We hope we can open as soon as we can to serve dumplings to the UC Davis students,” Liu said.

Written by: Sophie Dewees — features@theaggie.org

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