Thursday, 16 October 2008


The humble pork dumpling has many faces in Chinese cuisine. With a few different flavourings and shapes; they can be delicate, soupy won tons, steamed dim sum favourites siu mai, and also the crispy bottomed potsticker dumplings.

The dumplings are made much like potsticker dumplings, but instead of steaming and then frying, they are boiled. This makes for a somewhat softer and more delicate skin, as often the steaming and frying of the bread flour dough makes them more chewy.

Boiled Dumplings

Makes 12

80gr bread flour

40gr water

Mix the bread flour and the water together to form a dough. Knead for a few minutes and leave to rest.

150gr pork mince

1 shiitake mushroom, rehydrated and diced

1 spring onion, sliced finely

3 or 4 sprigs of coriander, chopped

1" ginger, minced

1 small carrot, grated

2 tsp light soy sauce

1 tsp cornflour

Mix all the ingredients above and leave to marinate for 1/2 an hour. Before you add the grated carrot, squeeze as much juice out of it as possible.

Roll the dough into a sausage shape and cut into 12 pieces. Flour each piece as you go along, and roll into a disc shape as thinly as you can manage. Place a heaped teaspoon of the pork mixture in the middle of the disc and fold the edges, making sure it's tightly sealed. I didn't bother crimping these dumplings, as I think the effect is lost with boiling them. Place each dumpling on a floured plate.

To cook, boil a big pot of water. Add the dumplings, and turn the heat down to a simmer. Simmer for 8 - 10 minutes, and serve with soy and chilli, or black vinegar and ginger.

They're not the most attractive things, but they are very tasty and simpler to make than the potstickers, due to not having to crimp and also the easy cooking method. They make a pleasing brunch.


Anonymous said...

Mmmmm, dumplings. I love them. It is something about the finger food element as well as the taste, a plateful of cute little dumplings is heaven! I could munch on them forever.

Joshua said...

It's all about the dumplings for a morning meal. I always keep a bag of bought frozen pork dumplings in the freezer, ready in 8 minutes, and they make frequent appearances at weekend breakfasts.

Laura Paterson said...

I love dumplings - though have never tried making the dough from scratch before! Nice work :)

Anonymous said...

ohhhhhhhh I love them so much, I always tried to make won ton like that but for some reason they'd always fall apart and I'd end up with this murky mince soup!

Will have to try making my own dough though.

Anonymous said...

I love my dumplings. I spent a lot of time at dumpling cafes in China, sampling all they had to offer. If only it were so easy to find tasty food here!

Have you seen anywhere in town where one might buy the dough ready made in to discs? I'm lazy!

Best thing about making dumplings is it's a group-cooking activity. Get a bunch of people round a table, hand out the dough and get everyone to make their own. There's a fun bit when they come out the other end and you get to see who managed to make ones that actually held together :)

Unknown said...

Thes sound delicious!

Hollow Legs said...

Charles - strange that your wontons fell apart. How did you fold them?

muffinsmuse - you can buy them in the supermarkets in Chinatown. I wouldn't recommend it though, word is that they're rather chewy...

Anonymous said...

That explains it! I made dumplings the other night after some serious cravings for the so-cheap-they-were-almost free plates of jiaozi I so regularly ate while living in Shanghai, but they turned out horrible- the dough was slimy and gross. I bought it pre-made at a Chinese grocery store in Bayswater. I'll have to suck it up and make my own last time because these look delicious!