Posted : March 8, 2020
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Recipe by Goose and Gander Kitchen, Caledon
- 1/2 medium head Napa cabbage (about 1 pound)
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 lb ground pork
- 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
- 1 bunch cilantro, minced (about 3/4 cup)
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2-inch piece fresh ginger, grated on a microplane or finely minced (about 3 tablespoons)
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 2 large eggs, whisked
- Slice the half-head of cabbage length-wise to make 2 quarters; slice each quarter into very thin strips, cutting cross-wise. Toss the slices with the salt in a large mixing bowl and set aside for 5 to 10 minutes – this helps tenderize the cabbage.
- Squeeze the liquid from the cabbage: While it rests with the salt, the cabbage will start to release liquid. When it’s ready, grab handfuls of the cabbage and squeeze out the water. Transfer the squeezed cabbage to another mixing bowl.
- To the bowl with the squeezed cabbage, add the ground pork, sliced scallions, cilantro, soy sauce, ginger, sesame oil, and eggs. Work the mixture together with your hands until fully combined.
- Arrange your dumpling-making station: Clear a large space on the counter. Set a small bowl of water, the bowl of filling, and a parchment-lined baking sheet nearby. Open the package of dumpling wrappers (or, if you’re feeling ambitious, see recipe below for making your own) and arrange a few on the work space in front of you.
- Place 1 scant tablespoon of filling on each dumpling wrapper: It doesn’t look like much filling, but using any more gets messy and makes the dumplings hard to pleat closed! Once you get the hang of pleating the dumplings, you can try adding a bit more.
- Dampen the edge of the wrapper with water: Dip your finger in the bowl of water and run it around the edge of the dumpling. This will help it to seal closed.
- Fold the dumpling in half: Lift the dumpling from the work surface and fold it in half. Press the top closed.
- Make a pleat in either side: Use your opposite thumbs to fold a tiny pleat on either side of the dumpling, then press firmly to seal the dumpling closed. You may need to dab a little water under the pleat to make it stick closed.
- Repeat with all the wrappers and filling: Continue filling and pleating the rest of the wrappers using the remaining filling — this is where having a few extra hands comes in handy! As you finish each dumpling, line it up on the parchment-lined baking sheet.
Cook or freeze the dumplings: You can cook the dumplings immediately, or freeze them on the baking sheet. Once frozen solid, gather them into a freezer container and keep frozen for up to 3 months.
- Sear the dumplings in a skillet: Film a skillet with about a tablespoon of oil and warm over high heat. When the oil is shimmering, arrange the dumplings in the pan as close as they’ll fit without actually touching. Cook until the bottoms have turned brown and golden.
- Add 3 tablespoons of water to the pan: Pour 3 tablespoons of water in the pan — the water will immediately sizzle and begin to steam.
- Cover the pan and lower the heat: Cover the pan immediately and reduce the heat to low. (If your skillet doesn’t have a lid, cover with a baking sheet.)
- Cook the dumplings for 3 to 5 minutes if fresh, or 6 to 8 minutes if frozen: When done, the wrappers will appear translucent and noodle-like; the filling will be opaque and warmed through (you can cut one open to check).
The weight ratio of flour to water for dumpling wrappers is a simple 1:1 – measure out 200g of high-gluten (all-purpose works, too) flour, followed by 200g of room-temperature water into one bowl.
Mix together with a fork until you can form a ball. Knead about 10 times – dough should be tough and not wet. Let rest for 20 minutes under a damp towel.
Knead again, and roll into a long log about the diameter of a quarter. Cut into small pieces about 12g each. Cover these pieces with a damp towel while you roll dumpling wrappers to about 3 ½ inches in diameter.