Sunday, June 14, 2009

Daring Cooks June - Potstickers

I was both excited and daunted by this month's challenge. Not only because of the recipe itself but because it was chosen by the ever awesome Jen from Use Real Butter! We don't have potstickers as such in Australia, so to me these are modified dim sims. But whatever you call them they were in a word ... sensational!

The dough was a lot easier to work with than I thought. I made a double batch to cover the amount of filling and ended up with 40, half fried and half steamed. One discrepancy I noticed was that the recipe stated to use a tablespoon of filling for each one. I found just 1 teaspoon of filling per potsticker used up all the filling and dough perfectly, no leftovers.

The taste test ...

These were absolutely scrumptious! Of the 2 I preferred the potstickers over the steamed dumplings because of the contrasting textures but both were delicious. I made the dipping sauce with all the optional extras and it was the perfect accompaniment. I will definitely be making these again!

Chinese Dumplings/Potstickers

pork filling:
1 lb (450g) ground pork
4 large napa cabbage leaves, minced
3 stalks green onions, minced
7 shitake mushrooms, minced (if dried - rehydrated and rinsed carefully)
1/2 cup (75g) bamboo shoots, minced
1/4 (55g) cup ginger root, minced
3 tbsp (40g) soy sauce
2 tbsp (28g) sesame oil
2 tbsp (16g) corn starch OR

shrimp filling:
1/2 lb (225g) raw shrimp, peeled, deveined, and coarsely chopped
1/2 lb (225g) ground pork
3 stalks green onions, minced
1/4 cup (55g) ginger root, minced
1 cup (142g) water chestnuts, minced
1 tsp (5g) salt
3 tbsp (40g) sesame oil
2 tbsp (16g) corn starch

dough:
(double this for the amount of filling, but easier to make it in 2 batches - or just halve the filling recipe)
2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (113g) warm water
flour for worksurface

dipping sauce:
2 parts soy sauce
1 part vinegar (red wine or black)
a few drops of sesame oil
chili garlic paste (optional)
minced ginger (optional)
minced garlic (optional)
minced green onion (optional)
sugar (optional)

Combine all filling ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mix thoroughly (I mix by clean hand). Cover and refrigerate until ready to use (up to a day, but preferably within an hour or two).

Make the dough, Method 1:

Place the flour in the work bowl of a food processor with the dough blade. Run the processor and pour the warm water in until incorporated. Pour the contents into a sturdy bowl or onto a work surface and knead until uniform and smooth. The dough should be firm and silky to the touch and not sticky.[Note: it’s better to have a moist dough and have to incorporate more flour than to have a dry and pilling dough and have to incorporate more water).

Make the dough, Method 2 (my mom’s instructions):

In a large bowl mix flour with 1/4 cup of water and stir until water is absorbed. Continue adding water one teaspoon at a time and mixing thoroughly until dough pulls away from sides of bowl. We want a firm dough that is barely sticky to the touch.

Both dough methods:

Knead the dough about twenty strokes then cover with a damp towel for 15 minutes. Take the dough and form a flattened dome. Cut into strips about 1 1/2 to 2 inches wide. Shape the strips into rounded long cylinders.

On a floured surface, cut the strips into 3/4 inch pieces. Press palm down on each piece to form a flat circle (you can shape the corners in with your fingers). With a rolling pin, roll out a circular wrapper from each flat disc. Take care not to roll out too thin or the dumplings will break during cooking - about 1/16th inch. Leave the centers slightly thicker than the edges.

Place a tablespoon of filling in the center of each wrapper and fold the dough in half, pleating the edges along one side (see images in post for how to fold pleats). Keep all unused dough under damp cloth.

To boil: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add dumplings to pot. Boil the dumplings until they float. To steam: Place dumplings on a single layer of napa cabbage leaves or on a well-greased surface in a steamer basket with lid. Steam covered for about 6 minutes.

To pan fry (potstickers): Place dumplings in a frying pan with 2-3 tbsp of vegetable oil. Heat on high and fry for a few minutes until bottoms are golden. Add 1/2 cup water and cover. Cook until the water has boiled away and then uncover and reduce heat to medium or medium low. Let the dumplings cook for another 2 minutes then remove from heat and serve.

To freeze: Assemble dumplings on a baking sheet so they are not touching. It helps to rub the base of the dumpling in a little flour before setting on the baking sheet for ease of release. Freeze for 20-30 minutes until dumplings are no longer soft. Place in ziploc bag and freeze for up to a couple of months. Prepare per the above instructions, but allow extra time to ensure the filling is thoroughly cooked.

To serve: Serve dumplings or potstickers hot with your choice of dipping sauce combinations.

10 comments:

  1. Me First!! Me First!!!

    Alright!!! Those look great. These were fun, weren't they. And a first, probably for a lot of us. I only steamed mine, but want to fry them next time.

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  2. Wow!! What a great looking plate of potstickers. You totally owned this one, sweetie. Kudos to you and I am really happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe. Now you're an expert :)

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  3. Yes I'm an Aussie and I have never heard of them neither. Your dumplings look superb and the pleating is to die for. And that dish full of potsticker looks so yummmyyyyyyy!!!!! Cheers from Audax in Sydney

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  4. Yummo! These look great. I love dumplings, but have never tried to make them before.

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  5. Your dumplings look really good. Great job!

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  6. You did it! That's a fine looking plate of dumplings.

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  7. Beautiful dumplings! You did an awesome job!

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  8. Ooo! Your potstickers look awesome =D. Beautiful job on this challenge!

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  9. WOW, not only did your dumplings/postickers and dipping sauce turn out gorgeous, but your photos are spectacular! Phenomenal job every which way!

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Thanks for reading! Questions or comments? I would love to hear from you ...

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