Sunday, June 14, 2009

Daring Cooks Challenge Number Dos

As always I am a day late and a dollar short. today is the second daring cook post date and I am whipping up pot stickers on posting day. I was worried that this was going to be a very involved long process to make pot stickers but they came together very fast and I had fun doing them with my 3 year old son. I made the dough and he kneaded while I put the filling together. then I kneaded the dough a little more for good measure.

Once the dough sat for 15- 20 minutes I cut it into little 1 inch square pieces and Luka rolled them out while I filled them. Filling 3 year old rolled, not so round, pot sticker dough is a bit of a challenge. But towards the end he had is down, making perfect little round rounds to be filled.

I chose to fry them as that is the usual method when I buy them from the store. And everyone enjoyed eating them. I would have gotten a cross section photo but Luka ate them so fast that I did not have a chance to get the camera out for that.

I was not able to follow the exact recipe given in the challenge because here in Mexico City all ingredients are available some of the time they are never ready at a whim. Napa cabbage and shitake mushrooms were nowhere to be found so I left out the mushrooms and replaced the napa with regular green cabbage.

I chopped the green onion (they were a little large) and the cabbage, sauteed them in a pan until they were soft. place in a bowl and added, chopped water chestnuts (bamboo shoots being another no find item) garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, corn starch and once cool the ground pork.

I will make these often not that I know how easy and delicious they are.

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

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.


Kitchen Bliss! said...

You sure whipped those up fast, and they look just delicious! Excellent job and I enjoyed reading about it. :)

Shayne said...

thank you. yes I realized when I saw your blog today was post day so I went to making them as soon as I left a comment on your blog.

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

They look lovely, Shayne! I think also a lot of people in DB post down to the wire!

Aimée said...

I think they turned out great. That is special that you could make them with you kids!

Jen Yu said...

That is just too cute that your little one helped you make the dumplings! Yours turned out looking perfect and I have to say you must be very talented and skilled in the kitchen if you whipped those up so quickly. AWESOME!! Great job.