Pork Dumplings

When I was a child, my mom would sit me down one afternoon to wrap dumplings. She'd prepare the ingredients the morning of and we'd spend the afternoon wrapping dumplings while watching TV dramas. She would normally make shrimp, pork or a mix of shrimp and pork dumplings. Store bought dumplings make a quick and easy meal. But it doesn't beat the taste of homemade dumplings. 

pork dumplings prior to cooking

Ingredients:

Ingredients: fatty and lean ground pork, napa cabbage, green onions, ginger, dumpling wrappers, salt, pepper, sesame oil, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 lb of fatty ground pork
  • 3 lbs of lean ground pork
  • 2 lbs of napa cabbage, diced finely
  • 5 green onions, sliced
  • 3 tbsp of grated ginger
  • 3 packages of dumpling wraps (454g each), keep refrigerated until ready to use
  • 3 tbsp of salt 
  • 3 tbsp of pepper
  • sesame oil
  • soy sauce
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • water

Directions:

pork dumplings ingredients preparation
pork dumplings assembly line
  1. In a large mixing bowl, add the fatty and lean ground pork together. Season with salt and pepper. Combine grated ginger, chopped green onions and the finely diced napa cabbage together with the ground pork and mix well.
  2. Add water into a small bowl. Remove dumpling wrappers from packaging. Keep unused dumpling wrappers in the fridge, so the wrappers do not dry out.
  3. Place one dumpling wrapper onto your hand and wet the outer edge with water. Scoop a teaspoonful of the ground pork filling into the center of the dumpling. Crimp the edges forming small pleats to seal the dumpling.
    • Note: I wrapped the dumplings by crimping the middle. Selecting one side and making three folds and repeating the three folds on the opposite side.
  4. Place sealed dumplings on a plate and repeat process until ingredients are used up.
 
pork dumplings

Dipping Sauce:

  1. In a small bowl, mix 1 tsp of Worcestershire sauce, 2 tbsp of soy sauce, 1 tsp of sesame oil and 1/2 tsp of pepper until combined.

Cooking and Storage:

pan-fried pork dumplings
  • Freeze - Extra dumplings that are not consumed immediately after making them can be frozen. Place the plate of dumplings in the freezer and allow it to firm up, about 1 hour. Remove frozen dumplings from plate and transfer into a ziplock bag. These can be kept up to 3 months in the freezer.
  • Boiled - Fresh dumplings are best cooked in boiling water. In a pot of water, add 1 tbsp of sesame oil and bring to a boil. Add the dumplings to the boiling water. Do not overcrowd the pot. Allow the dumplings to cook thoroughly, about 5 minutes, or when the dumplings float to the top. Use a slotted spoon and transfer the dumplings to a serving bowl.
  • Pan-Fried - Frozen dumplings are easier to pan-fry because they hold their shape better than fresh dumplings. On medium-high heat, add oil to a non-stick pan. Place dumplings onto the hot pan and allow them to brown uncovered, about 2 minutes. Turn dumplings over and lower the heat. Add 1/4 cup of water and cook covered for about 5 minutes. If you want it extra crispy, you can also pan-fry the third side. Remove the lid, increase the heat and cook for another 2 minutes until browned on the third side.

Verdict?

Pan-fried vs boiled dumplings?

I love both! Sometimes, I'm craving for the pan-fried dumplings with the delicious crunchy wrapping. It takes an extra effort to pan-fry them, but it's worth the extra time and care. Other times, I take the easier method to cook the dumplings and boil them. The dumplings retain more juices when they are boiled and are a ball of flavour bursting in your mouth with the first bite. Dipping the second half of the dumpling into the sauce makes it extra mouth-watering. 

pan-fried pork dumplings
boiled pork dumplings

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