If you really like to try any Chinese snacks, these pan-fried dumplings (jiaozi 餃子) must be on the top of your list.
The thin and soft dumpling pastry is filled with mince pork and Chinese chives. The bottom of each dumpling is fried to be brown and crispy. They are best served with black vinegar dipping sauce, and/or chili paste with soy sauce.
Kids in many Chinese families, especially those who are living in northern provinces of China would learn how to wrap dumplings at home from a very early age. It’s quite amusing to watch kids wrapping dumplings. They would first pick those dumplings they wrapped, eating with a great satisfaction.
There are many different ways of wrapping dumplings. Some are practical, some really artistic. I posted a video below showing how to wrap a dumpling easily and beautifully. I learned this method of wrapping dumplings from one of my Peking friends.
Basically, you can just seal the edges of dumplings and make sure not to let any fillings leak out when cooking. That’s it. When it comes to eating dumplings, flavours and taste always come before the looking.
Why not make some for your family or with your family if you haven’t tried before? Wrapping dumplings is fun.
- 1 packet dumpling pastry, about 24 pieces (available at Asian store)
- 220g mince pork
- 135g Chinese chives（韭菜）
- 1 Tbsp light soy sauce
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cornflour
- 1/2 tsp chicken powder (chicken bouillon powder)
- 1/2 tsp Shaoxing wine (or sherry)
- a dash of sesame oil
- a pinch of white pepper
- Rinse chives and pat dry with kitchen papers. Chop into small pieces. Mix mince pork with seasonings well and combine with chives thoroughly. Chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Prepare a little bowl of water for sealing dumplings. Place a heaped teaspoon of filling into the center of the dumpling pastry. Damp the edge with water and seal it tightly. (View the video below to see how to pleat a dumpling.)
- Heat up a bit of oil in a non-stick frying-pan. Place dumplings in a single layer without touching with each other. Fry them in batches until the bottom is light brown. Add 1/4 cup of boiling water, cover with a lid and cook until the water dries up. Dish up and serve with soy sauce, chili sauce or vinegar.
How to wrap a dumpling (video)
Note:Previously I posted the recipe of Chives and Minced Pork Buns. The buns are like these pan-fried dumplings except their skins are a bit thicker. The taste of them is very delicious.