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My favorite appetizer of all time has to be Asian dumplings, sometimes called Peking ravioli. There are more than a few ingredients to making good dumplings, but they are worth the effort. If you are making a dozen, you might as well make 100 and freeze them—once you get everything together, the assembly is fun and I have found that the little hands of kids turn this into a fun project.
Preparation Time: 90 minutes
Start to Finish Time: 90 minutes
Yield: 3 dozen dumplings
4 leaves Napa cabbage, finely chopped
5 garlic chives, finely chopped (substitute scallions or chives)
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger (1-inch piece)
1 pound ground pork
3/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon ground-garlic and chili sauce (such as Sriracha brand)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
8 cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
1 package round dumpling wrappers (substitute square wonton wrappers)
6 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
In a medium bowl, combine first 10 ingredients. With a dumpling wrapper flat in one hand, place about a tablespoon of filling in the middle in an oblong lump. There should be enough margin left along the wrapper to close it without spilling the filling, but don’t underfill.
Wet your finger and smear a little moisture along the outer edge of the wrapper; then fold the wrapper edges up into a taco shape and pinch the edges together at the top (in the middle) so that they’re stuck together (don’t let the pork filling get caught between). Create a pleat just to the right (or left) of the center pinch. Flatten the pleat next to the middle pinch point and squeeze the dough together.
Continue to the end of the dumpling; you should have two or three pleats from middle to end. At the end, you should have a small opening.
Pinch the end of the loop in toward the center of the dumpling and squeeze together.
Return to the middle pinch point and make pleats on the same side of the wrapper but in the opposite direction. At the end, pinch in the loop and squeeze the dough sealed.
Heat a large sauté pan to very high. Add about 2 tablespoons peanut oil.
Add up to 12 dumplings to the pan (don’t overcrowd) and brown well on both sides.
Add 1/4 cup water; then cover and let steam about 3 minutes. Add another 1/4 cup water; then cover and let steam about 3 minutes longer.
Remove to a plate and continue cooking remaining dumplings in batches. Serve with Soy Dipping Sauce.
Soy Dipping Sauce
• 1 cup light soy sauce
• 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
• 1 scallion, finely sliced
Directions for Dipping Sauce
In a small bowl, combine all ingredients.
Serve with prepared dumplings.
Annie B. Copps is a senior editor at Yankee Magazine. Annie oversees the magazine’s food coverage, both as an editor and as a contributor of feature stories and columns.
Filed under: appetizer, Dinner, Lunch, Recipes | Tagged: Annie Copps, chinese food, dumplings, peanut oil, soy, soy sauce | 1 Comment »