Sunday, July 24, 2011

Pork and Vegetarian Dumplings

Copyright 2011 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
One of our favorite hotspots in Atlanta is the Hongkong Harbor where they serve really good Chinese food. On weekends though, they serve dim sum for lunch and it was always a fun treat to see what was inside those little steamer baskets. I usually go there with Vincent, my boss and Sunil and his wife for a group dinner or with my friends, Jianrong and Jason. This way, I don't overeat as much although it is very difficult not to do so. We also frequent another dim sum restaurant, The Canton House and if you ever decide to go there, be ready for the vast amount of dim sum that will pass before your eyes. It is definitely a feast for the stomach and the eyes. 

Copyright 2011 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
The recipe below is something that I found in my Good Housekeeping cookbook which came as a bit of a surprise it being an American cookbook. It was a welcome surprise however as the recipe is actually very good. It tastes almost as good as the dumplings I've had from the Hongkong Harbor or the Canton house. And just in case you don't eat meat, I'm also including a vegetarian version courtesy of Dave Lieberman. I was also planning to include a shrimp dumpling but I'll save that for another post. So the next time you are in the mood for Chinese, you should try out these recipes. 

*Pork Dumplings- Adapted

2 cups packed, shredded Napa cabbage
½ lb ground pork
2 tbsp soy sauce
½ tsp salt
pinch of black pepper
1 tbsp dry white wine
2 tsp cornstarch
1 ½ tsp grated fresh ginger
1 green onion, minced
36 wonton wrappers
1 large egg white, beaten (to bind the dumplings)

1. In a 2-quart saucepan, add enough water to about an inch and heat to  
    boil. Add the cabbage and cook for 1 minute. Drain and immediately  
    rinse with cold running water.

2. When the cabbage is cool enough to handle, squeeze as much water  
    out of the cabbage as possible. Finely chop cabbage. Squeeze any
    residual liquid from the chopped cabbage. Put in a bowl.

3. Add the pork and the rest of the ingredients. Mix well.

4. Arrange wonton wrappers on a floured surface and with a pastry  
    brush, moisten each wrapper lightly with the egg white. Spoon 1  
    rounded teaspoon of filling on the center of each wrapper.

5. Bring together opposite corners of the wrapper over the filling and  
    pinch and pleat edges together to seal. Repeat with remaining  
    wrappers and filling.

6. In deep 12-inch skillet, heat ½ inch water to boiling over high heat.  
    Place all dumplings, pleated edges up, in one layer in pan. Stir gently  
    to prevent sticking. Heat dumplings to boiling over high heat.  
    Reduce heat to low, cover skillet, and simmer 5 minutes or until 
    dumplings are cooked.

**Filling for Vegetarian Dumpling - Adapted

2-3 tbsp olive oil
1 bundle green onions, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, grated
2 cups Napa cabbage, finely shredded and cooked as above
2 tsp soy sauce
2 tbsp rice vinegar 
1 inch piece ginger, peeled and grated
1 medium carrot, grated
2 tbsp corn starch
1 egg, beaten

1. In a saute pan, heat the oil at medium heat. Add the garlic and  
    onion. Cook for about 2 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients     
    except for the last two. Cook until all of the liquid has
    evaporated. Cool.

2. Add the egg and the corn starch. Mix well and prepare and cook the 
    dumplings as described above.

Soy dipping sauce
¼ cup soy sauce (low sodium is better)
½ tsp sesame oil
½ tsp balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
black pepper

Whisk with fork to mix ingredients and season with the black pepper. Add some green onion slices if desired. (This is my recipe. I did not like the dipping sauce that was recommended for this recipe. This is a bit mild in taste but it does not overpower the taste of the dumpling. You can adjust the amount of lemon juice or vinegar to taste.)

Note: You can steam the dumplings over high heat for about 10 minutes on a greased steamer.

*Good Housekeeping Step-By-Step Main Dishes: Hearst Books, New 
**Lieberman, Dave. Dave's Dinners: A Fresh Approach to  
   Home-Cooked Meals. Hyperion, New York: 2006. 

1 comment:

  1. ... my favorite chinese delicacy... but i really like it in meat, though... xiao long bao is the best... :-D