There must be a thousand steamed dumpling recipes out there. Seriously. These little steamed pockets of deliciousness can be filled with almost anything and, with a little patience while filling them, they’re pretty easy to make at home.
I admit I don’t make my wrappers from scratch; I buy wonton wrappers at my local grocer and make my life a little easier. What I do tend to do is go overboard with making them.
Every. Single. Time.
I’m going to tell you my easy steamed dumpling recipe but, if you really, truly want it to be easy: Cut this recipe in half, at least the first time.
Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Steamed Dumplings with Pork, Cabbage, Ginger and Garlic
- 1 package wonton wrappers (usually around 80 wrappers, which is a lot of dumplings)
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 2 scallions, all but the very ends, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce (I use low-sodium)
- 2 1/2 cups shredded cabbage (I’ve used Napa and good old regular green cabbage and both work great.)
- 1 large egg, beaten
In a large bowl, mix all of the filling ingredients together until thoroughly blended. Set aside to allow the flavors to meld and in the meantime, make the dipping sauce.
Clean a large section of your countertop off, find your zen place, and prepare to stuff dumplings.
I like to lay out about 20 wrappers at a time, as it makes the process faster if you’re working as your own assembly line.
Once you’ve got a bunch of wrappers down, using your clean hands or a small spoon, scoop just about a teaspoon of stuffing out and place in the middle of the wrapper. You may want to practice completing one or two dumplings by pinching them shut, just to gauge how much stuffing you need to fill the wrapper but not overflow it. If there’s too much filling, the dumplings won’t seal well, in which turn they won’t cook well. Then, start assembling.
Lay out wrapper, wrapper, wrapper (x20), spoon on filling, filling, filling, then pinch shut, pinch shut, pinch shut.
Stuffing dumplings takes long enough without trying to assemble each one separately.
Now, I’ve previously tried moistening the edges and such to help seal the dumplings but now I just press around them with my fingers and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Too much moisture will make them stick together, stick to the parchment paper and generally make a mess. Mine seal just fine as they cook, but you do whatever works best after you’ve steamed a few.
Once all your dumplings are stuffed and sealed, you’re ready to steam them. You only need to steam them for 20 minutes and you want to make sure that you don’t crowd them all in your steamer. Dumplings need room to let the steam circulate, plus you don’t want them to all be stuck together as they steam.
I now have a double-decker electric steamer that I use but I’ve also used a pan with a steamer insert and both work fine. If you have one of those nifty bamboo steamers, now’s a good time to put it to work.
Dipping Sauce for Steamed Dumplings
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 1 scallion, thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
Combine contents in a small dish and mix well.
Yes, on paper (well, computer screen) this sounds very simple and really, it is. It’s filling the dumplings that be time-consuming but it really does go faster with practice.
Often, I surprise myself with how many of these I can eat.