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Archive for August, 2011

Dagmar’s potstickers

Friday, August 5th, 2011

Long time no see! I know it’s been a long while but I hope you’ll quickly forget my absence if I’ll post my signature dish. I guess everyone has a signature dish, a dish that you love to cook and that others love to eat. If I would have to choose, I think that my signature dish would be dumplings or actually potstickers, fried dumplings. They take some time to prepare, but they are sure worth every minute. Sometimes when my guests arrive I’m still folding the dumplings but the guests are more than willing to help out as it’s a very nice way to spend time together. And sometimes I’ve even asked my girl friends to come earlier so we can fold the dumplings together while chatting and laughing.

I’m not saying that my recipe is a genuine Chinese one, because it probably isn’t. But trust me when I say that it’s scrumptious! The dough recipe I’ve found online and it’s extremely to work with. I prefer it to the ready made dumpling wrappers that you can buy in Chinese stores. The filling is my own and it contains lots of cilantro/coriander since I love it. Serve the fried potstickers with a dipping sauce. I like to serve them with 2-3 different dipping sauces for variety (make sure to serve one small bowl per person and sauce). The uncooked dumplings freeze very well, just make sure to freeze them individually on a tray first so that they won’t stick to each other. When cooking frozen dumplings, add a couple of minutes to the steaming process.

Dumpling dough (from Chow):
(Enough for around 30 dumplings depending on size)
2 cups flour
3/4 cups boiling water

Put the flour in the bowl of your food processor. Put lid on and start the machine. While running, add the boiling water through the feeding tube. Stop the machine a couple of seconds after you’ve added the water. The dough should look crumbly and when you pinch it, it should hold it’s shape.
Transfer the dough to your work surface and carefully, making sure not to burn yourself, knead it with the heel of your hands for 30 seconds. You should now have an elastic dough. Put the dough in a ziploc plastic bag and seal. Let the dough rest for at least 15 minutes but not more than 2 hours. You’ll quickly see that the hot dough will steam up the plastic bag.

While the dough is resting start on the filling. Feel free to play around with the quantities.

Dagmar’s dumpling filling:
(makes maybe 60-100 dumplings depending on size)

800 gram minced meat of your choice
250 ml spring onions, finely chopped
150 ml fresh cilantro/coriander, finely chopped
7 garlic cloves, finely grated or minced
2 tbsp sesame oil
3 tbsp light soya
1 tsp maldon sea salt
2 tsp Maizena
fresh pepper

In a big bowl combine all ingredients.

Now it’s time to fold the dumplings! I use a pasta machine to roll out the dough to a thickness of number 6 marked on the machine.

Cut out rounds with a glass or a dumpling mold. I’ve bought my molds in Poland and in the US at Bath Bed and Beyond. But to be honest I prefer to fold my dumplings by hand. There’s something relaxing with folding each dumpling carefully with your hands. But it’s up to you. On the below pictures you’ll see dumplings made with both a mold and by hand.

Fill each round with filling, the quantity is depending on the size of the rounds. When using the above dough, you don’t need to add water when folding the dumplings..

This is a dumpling made with a mold:

The below ones are folded by hand, in a crescent shaped form. Compared with the one made with the mold, the crescent formed ones have a flat and nice bottom that is easier to fry. Google to find descriptions on how to fold it. Or just play around.

Cover the dumplings with plastic foil while you’re working. The below ones are hand folded.

To cook the dumplings as potstickers pour 1 tablespoon of oil in a frying pan. When hot, put the dumplings in the pan. Make sure to cook them in batches. Fry until golden and then add 1/3 – 1/2 glass of water and quickly cover the frying pan with a lid. Let the dumplings steam for 6-7 minutes. Remove the lid and re-crisp the dumplings. If there is any water left in the pan, let it boil off first. When cooking frozen dumplings, add a couple of minutes to the steaming process.

Serve the potstickers with a dipping sauce, for example this one:

Basic dipping sauce:

4 tbsp soya
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp rice vinegar
finely chopped chili

Mix the sauce ingredients and divide between small bowls.

These potstickers are made with the mold, which is seen on the flat shape. The ones seen in the very first photo of this post were hand wrapped.