Ginger-spiced Pork Dumplings, Gyoza, with Chili-dipping Sauce
This is a fabulous recipe!!!! Using lean pork, a platter of fragrant gyoza is a simple, quick (and impressive) appetizer. The round dumpling wrappers are available in Asian food markets and are sometimes labeled for use in making “Shanghai dumplings.” Adjust the amount of chili oil in the dip to your own taste. The real trick, as in all Japanese cooking, is in the patient chopping of the ingredients that go into the filling. The other ‘essential’ is a good non-stick skillet or well-seasoned cast iron skillet. If you wish, use a food processor to chop the filling ingredients finely.
- ½ lb (225 g) lean ground pork
- 3 large dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked & minced
- 1 cup (250 mL) minced garlic chives or green onions
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsps (30 mL) minced ginger
- 1 cup (250 mL) finely shredded green cabbage
- 1 tsp (5 mL) sesame oil
- 1 tbsp (15 mL) light soy sauce
- ½ tsp (2 mL) cayenne (optional)
- 30 – 40 dumpling wrappers
- Canola oil, as needed for frying
The Dipping Sauce:
- 3 tbsps (45 mL) rice wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp (15 mL) light soy
- Chili oil, to taste
To make the dumplings combine the pork, mushrooms, chives or green onions, garlic and cabbage. Stir in sesame oil, soy and cayenne, if using.
Place a wrapper in the palm of your hand and moisten one edge. Mound with about 2 tsps (10 mL) of the filling. Fold over and pinch edges tightly to seal. Skilled cooks crimp them attractively.
Heat a non-stick skillet on medium-high. Moisten the bottom with a little oil. Add about half the gyoza in a single, tightly-packed layer. You will be cooking only one side so there is no need to leave room for flipping. Add ¼ cup (60 mL) water and cover. Cook and steam, adding a little extra water if needed for 10 minutes. At the end of the cooking time, the pan should be dry and the dumplings will have started to brown. Check for doneness by slicing through one gyoza. The filling should not be pink.
Repeat with the remaining dumplings. Keep warm before serving.
To make the dipping sauce, simply stir the vinegar, soy and chili oil together. Pass the gyoza with the sauce.
Makes between 30 – 40 dumplings.
Recipe from Anita Stewart’s CANADA: The Food, The Recipes, The Stories (HarperCollins Canada 2008).