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Flower Dumplings

Ginger and Green Onion Egg Drop Soup

Shanghai Dumpling Dough

Rolling Shanghai Dumpling Dough

Shanghai Dumpling Twisted and Ready for Steaming

Shanghai Pork Dumplings

Braised Bok Choy


Cantonese for "so close to the heart," once you've experienced dim sum at a Chinatown near you, you'll find this is true. 

Enjoyed anytime of the day, dim sum is especially savored at breakfast and lunchtimes.  Waiters push around steaming carts of dumplings, buns, pastries, soups and stir fried vegetables.

Of course, they all have to be washed down by steaming hot tea.

Pork and Shrimp Flower Dumplings

24 wonton wrappers, cut into circles
½ lb. ground pork
5-6 large raw shrimp, peeled and de-veined, finely chopped
½ cup chopped green onion
1 tbs soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 tbs cornstarch
3 cloves of garlic, minced or finely grated
24, 2-inch squares of parchment paper

Combine the pork, shrimp, green onion, soy sauce, sugar, cornstarch and garlic like you would meatloaf. Taking a wonton wrapper circle, place a scant teaspoon of filling into the center of the wrapper.

Wet the wrapper edge with a damp finger. Fold the wrapper up and around the filling, leaving the top of it exposed. Tap the dumpling on the bottom, place on a parchment square and finish preparing the remaining dumplings.

Place dumplings in a steamer and steam for 20 minutes or until pork is cooked through.

Serves 4

Ginger and Green Onion Egg Drop Soup
3 cups of chicken stock
2 eggs, slightly whisked
1 tsp cornstarch mixed in water
2, ¼ inch thick slices of fresh ginger
1/3 cup chopped green onion, plus 2-3 inch pieces for serving
1 tsp soy sauce
Black pepper

Place stock in a small stockpot with the ginger and bring to a boil, reduce heat, add the green onion and soy sauce. Simmer for five to eight minutes then whisk in the cornstarch slurry.  Cook for a few minutes more and whisk in the eggs. Remove from heat, serve garnished with additional green onions and a few fresh grindings of black pepper.

Yields 6, ½-cup servings

Shanghai Pork Dumplings
The outside of these slightly chewy and puffy dumplings is reminiscent of old-fashioned drop dumplings.  The dough is sticky, yet easy and forgiving to work with when creating these savory bites of pork and cabbage.

2 cups flour
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
2 egg yolks
¾ cup warm milk

Mix and then knead into a smooth dough and form into a log. This log will be evenly divided into 24 pieces.  Each pieces is flattened and stretched to encase the pork and cabbage filling – twisting the top to close.

½ lb ground pork (available in the butcher’s case)
1 cup Napa/Chinese cabbage, sautéed
2 cloves of garlic, minced or grated
¼ cup chopped green onion
1 tsp grated ginger
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 tbs cornstarch
Pinch of salt and a dash of pepper

Combine all ingredients like you would for a meatloaf mixture.  Can be made a day ahead. To form the dumplings, take a piece of prepared dough and fill with a rounded tablespoon of filling. Steam in a steamer lined with either blanched cabbage leaves or with parchment squares under each dumpling.  Cook for approximately 25 minutes or until the dough is puffed and pork is cooked through – testing for doneness by cutting a dumpling open.

Serves 8-12 (2 to 3) dumplings each

Braised Bok Choy
If you are lucky enough to have an international market or an Asian grocery store nearby, it’s worth a visit to discover the large variety of bok choy cabbages that are available. Many, come in small bundles and are full of flavor that is crisp to the bite while being green and refreshing.

This simple dim sum dish is good on its own and is even better served as a counterpart to steamed dumplings and steaming hot soups.  It can also double as a fast and simply elegant side dish to a weeknight dinner of pan roasted pork or chicken.

½ lb of baby bok choy or bok choy that has been sliced in half lengthwise
¼ cup soy sauce (low sodium if desired)
1 tsp cornstarch
½ cup water

Thoroughly clean the bok choy as it can have dirt or grit near it’s base, steam until it is crisp-tender and still bright green. Then remove to a dry skillet over medium-hot heat and sauté until just lightly browned. Meanwhile, whisk together the soy sauce, cornstarch and water and add to hot skillet with the bok choy.

Serves 4

Copyright 2007.