Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pork Gyoza

For those of you who have never been to the wonderful land of Dim Sum, I pity you. You may not know, but you've missed out on the most wonderful food of your life. Don't fret, I'm here to help
I've only made gyoza (dumplings) on a handful of occasions, but that's enough times to know how to make them correctly and incorrectly.
Now you might be wondering, "Aren't pot stickers really difficult to master?" I will answer No. Maybe your first 25 dumplings wont look the greatest, but they will taste delicious!
Asian food is to me as Soul Food is to the south. It's what I crave, it's what I want on a perfectly rainy Sunday afternoon, and it's the only thing I want when I'm sick.
Now, you might look at the recipe and freak out at the list of ingredients, but honestly, you'll love these SO MUCH that you'll want to make them all the time. Those ingredients like Fish Sauce, Rice wine Vinegar (probably the most useful ingredient you'll have to buy for this) and Sesame Oil will probably not get used as frequently as you wish, but you should try to experiment with them. I use Sesame Oil on numerous things to finish them off.  Maybe add it to your favorite marinade for a new twist...

Pork Gyoza/Dumplings/Pot stickers
somewhere between 1/2 and whole pound of ground pork (as lean as you can find)
(For a vegetarian option, use sauteed cabbage)
sauteed spinach, finely chopped and squeezed in a paper towel to get out extra moisture
2 green onions
thumb-sized piece of ginger
2-3 garlic cloves minced and mashed
Few dashes of Fish Sauce
2 tsp sugar
2Tbls soy sauce
1 tsp rice vine vinegar
round wonton wrappers
Dipping Sauce
soy sauce
sesame oil
rice wine vinegar

1. Get out the wonton wrappers to thaw (if they are the frozen kind). Start by finely chopping all veggies and grating the ginger on a micro plane. Mix all ingredients into the pork and set aside to marinate for 30 minutes.
2. Set up a workstation with a cutting board in front of you, the bowl of pork near your working hand, and get a small bowl of water for your fingers. Unwrap the wrappers and lay a damp paper towel on top.
3. Start with one wrapper in your hand and with the other hand, grab a very small (about a small teaspoon size, you might want to measure first to get the feel) amount of pork mixture. Place it into the center of the wonton wrapper. With the same hand that grabbed the pork, dab your finger into the water and run it around all the edges of the wonton wrapper, making sure every part is moistened. Then bring together two opposite edges of the wrapper, pressing to seal. Starting on the right side, bring the front part of the wrapper towards the center, making a pleat, and press to seal. You should have room for about two-three pleats before you get to the corners. When I get to the corners, I push the very end in towards the center and press to seal. Repeat on the other side. While making these, since you are taking more wrapper from the front side, your dumpling will start to shape like a half-moon. Keep working till you run out of pork and/or pot stickers.
4. Heat a large, flat skillet on medium and spray with good amount of oil. Place filled dumplings onto the  hot pan and cook until the bottoms turn brown (you can lift them up to peek). Then add about a 1/4-1/3 cup water to the pan and cover quickly with a lid. Steam pot stickers until they are cooked through and most of the water is cooked off. (Note: the wrappers may look transparent when cooked completely) You might have to try one to see!  :]
5. For the sauce, start with about 1/3 c soy sauce, drizzle in 1 tsp sesame oil and 1 tsp rice wine vinegar. Garnish sauce with chopped green onions.

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