Sunday, June 14, 2009

Daring Cooks' Chinese dumplings/potstickers



Finally my computer is working again ! And I'm so happy to be able to post the wonderful recipe from Jen of use real butter her potsticker are just a wonder ! They come together quite fast and are so good !!
We had a great time eating these dumplings and remembering last time I tried to make them which was nine years ago and, to make Andrea happy, I had bought a chinese book about dim sum, gotten all the ingredients from a chinese store and... became crazy making all sorts of fillings and doughs up to late night ! The next day I found out the reason of my 'more than usual' craziness : I was pregnant !
Now Carlo is eight years old and thanks to Jen, Andrea finally had some great homemade dumplings !

Please try this recipe but visit Jen post before and all the Daring Cooks' blogs !!
(Of course the following photos are my potsickers coming together : Jen's are much better !!)

Chinese Dumplings/Potstickers

pork filling:
1 lb (450g) ground pork
4 large napa cabbage leaves, minced
3 stalks green onions, minced
7 shitake mushrooms, minced (if dried - rehydrated and rinsed carefully)
1/2 cup (75g) bamboo shoots, minced
1/4 (55g) cup ginger root, minced
3 tbsp (40g) soy sauce
2 tbsp (28g) sesame oil
2 tbsp (16g) corn starch

OR

shrimp filling:
1/2 lb (225g) raw shrimp, peeled, deveined, and coarsely chopped
1/2 lb (225g) ground pork
3 stalks green onions, minced
1/4 cup (55g) ginger root, minced
1 cup (142g) water chestnuts, minced (I substituted some zucchini)
1 tsp (5g) salt
3 tbsp (40g) sesame oil
2 tbsp (16g) corn starch

dough: (double this for the amount of filling, but easier to make it in 2 batches - or just halve the filling recipe)
2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (113g) warm water
flour for worksurface (I weighted the ingredients and didn't need any)

dipping sauce:
2 parts soy sauce
1 part vinegar (red wine or black)
a few drops of sesame oil
chili garlic paste (optional)
minced ginger (optional)
minced garlic (optional)
minced green onion (optional)
sugar (optional)

Combine all filling ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix thoroughly (I mix by clean hand). Cover and refrigerate until ready to use (up to a day, but preferably within an hour or two).

Make the dough, Method 1: Place the flour in the work bowl of a food processor with the dough blade. Run the processor and pour the warm water in until incorporated. Pour the contents into a sturdy bowl or onto a work surface and knead until uniform and smooth. The dough should be firm and silky to the touch and not sticky.[Note: it’s better to have a moist dough and have to incorporate more flour than to have a dry and pilling dough and have to incorporate more water).

Make the dough, Method 2 (my mom’s instructions): In a large bowl mix flour with 1/4 cup of water and stir until water is absorbed. Continue adding water one teaspoon at a time and mixing thoroughly until dough pulls away from sides of bowl. We want a firm dough that is barely sticky to the touch.

[EDIT: 5/26/09] There have been two complaints posted about a dry dough and I realize that this rests in the problem of measuring flour which has a different density and hence weight for 2 cups depending on how you scoop it. That is why I also list the weight: 250g. Flour tends to settle over time, so when I scoop it out, I shake several cups' worth back into the container before taking a final scoop of soft, fluffy, flour and I get 250g for 2 cups. When you knead the dough, if it feels hard and dry, then you can add more water. [Warning: it will NOT be a soft bread dough, so don't expect it to be, but it shouldn't be a brick either.] It is perfectly fine to use more than the 1/2 cup listed in the recipe as everyone's climate and flours vary. Use your judgment - this is what being a Daring Cook is about. We are trying to cultivate a sense of intuition so that recipes are general guidelines from which you can expand your own style.

Both dough methods: Knead the dough about twenty strokes then cover with a damp towel for 15 minutes. Take the dough and form a flattened dome. Cut into strips about 1 1/2 to 2 inches wide. Shape the strips into rounded long cylinders. On a floured surface, cut the strips into 3/4 inch pieces. Press palm down on each piece to form a flat circle (you can shape the corners in with your fingers). With a rolling pin, roll out a circular wrapper from each flat disc. Take care not to roll out too thin or the dumplings will break during cooking - about 1/16th inch. Leave the centers slightly thicker than the edges. Place a tablespoon of filling in the center of each wrapper and fold the dough in half, pleating the edges along one side (see images in post for how to fold pleats). Keep all unused dough under damp cloth.

To boil: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add dumplings to pot. Boil the dumplings until they float.

To steam: Place dumplings on a single layer of napa cabbage leaves or on a well-greased surface in a steamer basket with lid. Steam covered for about 6 minutes.



To pan fry (potstickers): Place dumplings in a frying pan with 2-3 tbsp of vegetable oil. Heat on high and fry for a few minutes until bottoms are golden. Add 1/2 cup water and cover. Cook until the water has boiled away and then uncover and reduce heat to medium or medium low. Let the dumplings cook for another 2 minutes then remove from heat and serve.

To freeze: Assemble dumplings on a baking sheet so they are not touching. It helps to rub the base of the dumpling in a little flour before setting on the baking sheet for ease of release. Freeze for 20-30 minutes until dumplings are no longer soft. Place in ziploc bag and freeze for up to a couple of months. Prepare per the above instructions, but allow extra time to ensure the filling is thoroughly cooked.

To serve: Serve dumplings or potstickers hot with your choice of dipping sauce combinations.

22 comments:

Barbara...Babs said...

partiamo dal concetto che sono meravigliosi e che, suppongo, siano dei ravioli..... ma???? natalia! mi farai impazzire :-)
cosa sono???????
:-D :-D :-D
mi devi fare un corso accellerato!

Mary said...

What wonderful pictures. The photos and the dumplings are beautiful.

shellyfish said...

What a sweet story! I love it - you're so cute!!!
Beautiful job, of course. I really loved this challenge - and so did my husband!

Dajana said...

Wow, that's impressive. Great job.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Very well done! Your dumplings look perfect! Yummy!

Cheers,

Rosa

Lien said...

sounds like great fun making these. I love food with memories!

lisamichele said...

Great read and beautiful dumplings..plus, your photos are lovely! Well done in every aspect :)

Cakelaw said...

These look great Natalia - well done! I have never made dumplings. And happy belated birthday to your son - hope he enjoyed his dumplings.

vibi said...

An Italian that succeeds even at Asian dishes! WOW!
Everything you touch, works perfectly! Brava!

TeaLady said...

Your dumplings look fantastic!! they were fun and soooo much better than those in the restaurants.

Thanks so much for coming by.

Laura said...

Natalia, che meraviglia! Mi sono dimenticata della "challenge" e inoltre ho avuto una settimana di fuoco! Forse provo a farli oggi.

Bravissima!

Elra said...

Wow, The Daring Cook made dumpling. Such a delicious challenge. Yours look absolutely superb Natalie!

Jenny said...

Hehe funny, the last time I had Dim Sum, I was pregnant too. Mine is six and was my sous chef for this.
Goes to show it had been too long for both of us.

The Blonde Duck said...

That's such a cute story. I bet the dumplings tasted even better.

Faery said...

I HAVE to try this recipe, they look gorgeous and so so delicious.
Beautiful story about your first dumplings, there was a reason, the most beautiful one.
Thanks for your nice words in y blog :)

LegalAlien said...

Well, let's put it this way: Andrea's wait was worth it!!

Complimenti, sono bellissimi!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Natalia your dumpling/potstickers are beautiful and the fillings look really wonderful.
Wonderful memory to bring these sort of full circle after 8 years ;)

pinkstripes said...

I want to go back and make these when i have time. They look wonderful!

Jen Yu said...

Oh, those came together so nicely! You make gorgeous potstickers. What a great post and what a fantastic job you did on the challenge :)

TeaLady said...

I can understand wanting to try all different fillings. These were so easy to make (except for the pleating....) and I still have enough to make some more.

Yours look delicious.

♥Rosie♥ said...

WOW Natalia this is some serious cooking! Those dumplings are beautiful and I bet they tasted divine.

Arundathi said...

What an expert pleater you are! Just lovely!