Thursday, March 12, 2009

Gyoza (Dumplings)

Gyoza, Jiaozi in Chinese and Dumplings in English, came from China. Yet, it is one of the most popular dishes among Japanese. Every family has their own Gyoza recipes. When I moved to US, one of the first things I asked my mother was sending me our family Gyoza recipe! It is easy to make and after cook you can freeze and eat them later.
My mother’s recipe requires Nira, known as garlic chives. It was not easy to find it around my neighborhood in NYC. Even thought I lived in the city where you can find a lot of Asian supermarkets or Japanese grocery stores, still I had to take a subway to get them. Now I live in Louisiana and it is almost impossible to find fresh Nira in any supermarket.
Therefore, I innovated this Gyoza recipe without Nira. You can get all of the ingredients from any regular American supermarkets.
After many experiments, my husband finally approved my Gyoza. Moreover he admits mine is better than his Taiwanese friend’s Dumplings or my mother’s. I start believing he is right ;)

Ingredients (for 4 servings):
4-5 cabbage leaves
½ cup chopped green onion
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp minced or grated ginger
½ lb ground pork
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce
1 tsp cornstarch
1 pack of Gyoza (Dumpling) or Wanton wraps

Dipping Sauce:
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp lemon juice or rice vinegar
A few drops sesame oil
*Optional: Paprika or chill pepper

Chop finely cabbage leaves and mince a clove of garlic. Mix them with chopped green onion, minced ginger, ground pork, sesame oil, soy sauce, oyster sauce, and cornstarch. Use your clean hand to mix them well!

Put a tablespoon of the mixture on the center of a Gyoza wrap and water around an edge of a Gyoza (Dumpling) wrap by finger. Fold one side of the edges a few times and seal the top (Please refer to the pictures. If you cannot do it, do not bother! Just close the top. It does not affect the taste of Gyoza!).
Heat oil in a fry pan. Place dumplings and fly on medium heat until the bottoms become brown. Add hot water filling up to the half of their height.
Cover the pan and steam them till the water is almost gone. Open the cover and fry on low heat until the water is completely gone.

Serve hot Gyoza with the dipping sauce!

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