Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Chinese Potstickers (Dumplings)

This is a pretty traditional dish for Chinese New Year since dumplings resemble the gold ingots that people used to use as currency. If it looks like money, it must be lucky! Below is an estimate of my mom's recipe (though we never really follow a recipe, I just throw things in until it looks right). It makes a ton of dumplings, but these freeze really well and then you can have yourself a plate of dumplings whenever you feel like it.

Chinese Potstickers (Dumplings)

2 kg pork mince

1/4 ginger, minced
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup oyster sauce
2 packages of Chinese chives, minced
1/2 head of garlic, minced
1/3 cup sesame oil
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons ground black pepper
4 packages round dumpling wrappers (I use Golden Dragon brand)

Mix all of the ingredients except for the dumpling wrappers together in a large bowl. Sometimes it is easier to just get your hands in there and mix it all together. If you are worried about whether the mix tastes right, take a spoonful of the mix and fry it in a pan and taste - then you can add more of anything to the mix if you think it is missing.

To make the dumplings, take a wrapper and put 1 tablespoon of filling in the middle. Dip your finger in a bowl of water and then moisten the wrapper along the entire edge. Fold the wrapper in half, pinching in the middle, so you get a half-moon shape. Then with one side of the wrapper, make a fold towards the pinch in the middle, and then seal it against the other side. Do the same from the other side of the pinch. (If this is too difficult to understand, just seal the dumplings into half moons. The most important part is that the dumplings are sealed - the folds just make them prettier.)

Once dumplings are wrapped, you can either cook them or freeze them. To cook, either from fresh or frozen, pour some vegetable oil into a non-stick pan and place dumplings in the pan in one layer. Add enough water to the pan to come halfway up the dumplings, then put a lid on the pan that has a little vent for steam to escape and put pan on high heat. Check after about 10 minutes - the water should be boiling off. You can remove the lid at this point and then just keep checking them - once they are brown and crispy on the bottom and all the water has boiled off, they are done. Serve with soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil and chopped scallions for dipping.


  1. I would choose these dumplings over gold ingots every time. A-mazing.

  2. oh man, marina, i miss your potstickers. andy is a lucky man. for many reasons, of course, but this is one of them.