Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Yao's Dragon Beard Candy- Chinatown

I am always discovering new things during my jaunts through the city. A quest for a free banh mi sandwich in Chinatown led me to Yao's Dragon Beard Candy. I was walking on Chrystie towards Grand Street when I came across this curious street vendor filled with white sugar confections.

Waiting patiently for customers
"Is it cotton candy?"
"No, it's not cotton candy."
"What is it?"
"Dragon beard candy."

I have never heard of dragon beard candy before. I asked the lady if I could try it and she kindly gave a small sample each to my friend and I.

Dragon Beard Candy is cocoon like.
The candy looked light and airy like a cocoon cloud. Upon bite, it was more dense. The dragon beard candy was filled with peanuts giving it a nice crunchy texture. I later found out that the candy also had pieces of coconut mixed in to it. The candy was quite addicting and tasty.

"No sugar, no sugar." The lady kept saying. I'm not so sure how much of this statement holds true since the candy is made from a ball of corn syrup. Welps, just as I like to tell my friends and family that the baked goods I make are fat and calorie free, I will blindly believe the Yao's Dragon Beard Candy lady. I could easily see this candy as becoming my new favorite street treat in Chinatown following mini pancakes.

Check out the process on how Yao's Dragon Beard Candy is made.

A ball of corn syrup is immersed in rice flour to keep it from getting sticky
The ball is then stretched 15 times into thread like strands
The result? Hair like dragon beard candy.
Coconut and peanuts are then folded into the dragon beard strands
Dragon Beard Candy
Yao's Dragon Beard Candy is sold for $3 a container or two for $5. It was a finalist in the Best Dessert category at the 2010 Vendy Awards.

Yao's Dragon Beard Candy
corner of Chrystie and Grand


  1. nom nom nom. i ate the entire container in 5 minutes. LOL

  2. very cool, i think i saw the same thing being made when i was in korea