Pork Dumplings with Soy-Ginger Sauce
1 lb. pork butt, coarsely ground
1 C. finely chopped scallions
3 T. soy sauce
1 T. Asian sesame oil
1 T. peeled, grated ginger root
1/2 lb. Chinese napa cabbage, finely chopped
1 1 lb. package round dumpling wrappers (gyoza), 3 inches in diameter
In a large bowl, combine the pork, scallions, soy sauce, sesame oil and ginger root. Mix well so that the flavors penetrate the meat. Then add the cabbage and mix until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined. The filling will not taste right if you try to combine all the ingredients at once.
Place one dumpling wrapper on a plate or a board. Place one scant tablespoon or pork mixture in the center. Moisten the edges of the wrapper with a little water, then fold them over the filling to form a half moon shape. Pinch the center together first, then stand the dumpling up on its base and pleat one of the sides of the half-moon twice, halfway between the outer edge and the center. Pleat the other side in the same way and leave the dumpling standing up.
Stand the finished dumplings on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Do not allow the sides of the dumplings to touch each other, or they will stick together. Repeat, using the remaining dumpling wrappers and pork filling.
The dumpling can be made in advance and frozen for up to 3 months, or they can be cooked immediately, either boiled or pan-fried.
Fill a large stock pot two-thirds full of water and bring to a boil. Add one-third of the dumplings. Using a Chinese strainer or slotted spoon, stir the dumplings to prevent them from sticking together.
Return the water to a boil. The dumplings will rise to the top, but at this point, the filling will still be raw. Add 1/2 cup cold water and return to a boil again. When the dumpling floats, taste one to see if it is done. If not, add another 1/2 cup of cold water and cook until dumplings rise again. Adding cold water slows the cooking so the dough does not break, allowing enough time for the filling to be thoroughly cooked.
Pan - Fry:
Pan - fried dumplings are known as "pot stickers" because one side sticks to the bottom of the pot, becoming delightfully crisp. Heat about one tablespoon corn oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add as many dumplings as can fit in a single layer. Pour 1/2 cup cold water over the dumplings.
Cover the skillet and cook over low heat for about 10 minutes, without turning or stirring, until the water has evaporated and the dumplings are golden and crisp on the bottom.
1/4 C. soy sauce
1/4 C. balsamic vinegar
2 T. water
1 T. peeled, julienned ginger root, soaked in ice water
Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl. Mix thoroughly and serve. This sauce will keep for up to 1 week in the refrigerator, without the ginger root. Add the ginger root when ready to serve.
Makes 40 t0 45 Dumplings
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