Fast Pot-Stickers

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Emma Alter Photo
Emma Alter

Difficulty Level Easy

After the big shopping expedition last week to the Asian market with my daughter, son, and my son's girlfriend, we had some dim sum. The three of them are vegetarians so we didn't get anything with meat, which was fine with me, because sometimes I'm just not sure what kind of meat it is in those little dumplings. We ordered something called "flavoured tofu", but none of us could figure out what the flavour was supposed to be. We have made dim sum in the past and agreed that we could do better than what we were eating.

We reconvened later in the week to make our own dim sum banquet. This was a bit of a time consuming venture. It took three hours for three, actually 2 1/2 of us (I had dental work done in the afternoon and wasn't very productive in the kitchen) to make this dinner but we were in no rush. For us it was three hours of cooking, laughing and listening to great music. I have a small kitchen and we have never actually cooked a whole meal with the three of us in the kitchen at the same time. Hugh usually takes the cooking lead, and he can be a bit of a tyrant in the kitchen, but this was Emma's evening. Emma and I agreed that making Hugh a sous chef made for a much more harmonious work situation.

Hugh's girlfriend Becca joined us after work and we sat down to a feast of egg rolls, spring onion pancakes, pot-stickers and mango salad. Everything was delicious, but we liked the spring onion pancakes the best. However, three days later, we were still talking about how good the pot-stickers were. After much thought I decided to share the pot-sticker recipe with readers. We made both a meat and a vegetarian version of these. We didn't have any cabbage, but we had so many other vegetables that we just chopped a bunch of stuff like asparagus and ramps to use as filling. We used won ton wrappers and they worked just fine.

INGREDIENTS

3/4 pound ground pork or other meat
1 cup minced cabbage
2 tablespoons minced ginger
1 tablespoon minced garlic
6 scallions, the white and green parts separated, both minced
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons good soy sauce
48 dumpling wrappers
1 egg, lightly beaten in a bowl
4 tablespoons peanut oil or vegetable oil, more or less
1/4 cup rice vinegar or white vinegar

PREPARATION:

  1. Combine meat, cabbage, ginger, garlic, scallion whites and 2 tablespoons soy sauce in a bowl with 1/4 cup water. Lay a wrapper on a clean, dry surface, and using your finger or a brush, spread a bit of egg along half of its circumference. Place a rounded teaspoon of filling in center, fold over and seal by pinching edges together. (Do not overfill.) Place dumplings on a plate; if you want to wait a few hours before cooking, cover plate with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Or freeze, for up to two weeks.
  2. To cook, put about 2 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet and turn heat to medium-high. A minute later, add dumplings, one at a time; they can touch one another, but should still sit flat in one layer. Cook about 2 minutes, or until bottoms are lightly browned. Add 1/4 cup water per dozen dumplings to pan, and cover. Lower heat to medium, and let simmer about 3 minutes.
  3. To make the dipping sauce, combine remaining soy sauce, green parts of scallions and vinegar.
  4. Uncover dumplings, return heat to medium-high and cook another minute or two, until bottoms are dark brown and crisp and water evaporates. (Use more oil if necessary.) Serve hot, with sauce.

    From Bitten

This recipe appears in: Asian