Homemade dumplings [Photo by Fan Zhen/China Daily]
Ingredients (30 to 40 dumplings):
1 kg all purpose flour Water
500 g lean mince (pork or chicken)
50 g fatty mince
50 ml Sichuan pepper-infused oil
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp Chinese wine
2 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tbsp light soy sauce
1 whole Chinese cabbage, about 800 g
1. Prepare dough by adding enough water to the plain flour to get a ball. Knead until silky smooth and pliable, and let rest under a damp cloth.
2. Combine minced meats in a large bowl and add all the seasonings. Stir in one direction until well mixed. Rest the filling.
3. Finely slice the Chinese cabbage and chop. Add a generous sprinkle of salt and leave for 5 minutes to draw out juices.
4. Place chopped cabbage in a muslin bag and squeeze to expel the water. Add the cabbage to the minced meat mixture and combine well.
5. Pinch off half the dough and knead until very pliable. Poke a hole in the centre of the dough ball, and slowly enlarge it by rolling it around your wrists to get a very large doughnut.
6. Break the doughnut to get a long strip of dough. Pinch off regular segments and roll into little circles.
7. Fill the wrappers with meat mixture and set aside.
a. To make the dumplings, place a spoonful of filling in the center and pinch the center of both sides together.
b. Pleat the dumpling on one side only, to get its characteristic convex shape.
8. Bring a pot of lightly salted water to the boil. Add about 20 dumplings to the boiling pot. When the water comes back to a boil, add a cup of water. Repeat this once. After the second boiling, the dumplings should be cooked. Drain and serve with finely shredded ginger or minced garlic in black vinegar.
[Photo by Fan Zhen/China Daily]
1. Place raw dumplings neatly in a lightly oiled nonstick pan. Do not pack them too tightly as you need to allow them space to swell a little as they cook.
2. Heat up the pan and let the bottoms of the dumplings crisp. You can tell they are ready when you shake the pan and they sound a little "hollow".
3. Add a cup of water to the pan and bring it up to the boil. Cover and simmer.
4. When the water is about to dry up, add another half cup of water.
5. When that dries up as well, lower the heat and allow the dumplings to crisp.
6. Place a plate over the pan and carefully invert the cooked dumplings so the crisp bottoms face up. Serve with shredded ginger and black vinegar.