Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Pot Stickers

I love Chinese food.  And Japanese food.  And Korean food.  And Filipino food.  OK, if it's the general category of Asian, I like it.  My favorite is "House Special Lo Mein."  Yes, I know that many dishes served at your local Chinese joint are considered "Americanized Chinese Dishes, " and that's fine.  There's nothing like thick noodles, crisp veggies and salty chicken, beef and pork.  Take me to a buffet and I'll get kicked out.  "You go home now!" (name what that line is from)

Anyway, I recently conquered a challenge, one of my favorite foods - pot stickers.  I've never been good at any foods that require filling and sealing and then cooking.  This time, I figured, I'll try.  If I fail, I fail... If I succeed, I succeed.  And... I succeeded.

This is a recipe that really has no measurements.  I probably looked at 10 different recipes on the net and came up with my own.  *Disclaimer - If the following strongly resembles your recipe let me know and I will credit.

Ground chicken - I used about half that package
savoy cabbage
green onion
soy sauce
oyster sauce
store bought wrappers
(ignore the shrimp, lol)
I cooked the chicken.  Most of the recipes have you fill dumplings with raw meat, but I felt more comfortable cooking it first.  You can do either, I don't know that it makes that much of a difference.
Chopped about a cup of the cabbage, a garlic clove, 2 stalks of green onion (only the green part), and a shallot.  I personally hate biting into ginger, no matter how little a piece, so I diced about 2 inches of ginger and used my garlic press to kind of "juice" it.
I took the chicken and everything but the cabbage and pulsed it in the food processor to make it a little more even in texture.  While doing that I added about a ts of oyster sauce and 2 ts of soy sauce and a few shakes of pepper.

I ended up with about a cup of cabbage to a cup of the meat mixture.
Once mixed up, I started my dumplings.


Wet the edges and put about a ts of filling in the middle.  Fold over and seal the edges.

I didn't get too fancy on the first few.  I was just happy that the seal was holding.  But then I thought I'd try to pleat them.  I'd watched a couple videos on YouTube and actually did it!  (BTW, this guy rocks!  His cooking videos are very helpful and he's hilarious! runnyrunny999 )
Not beautiful, but did it.  They got a little nicer as time went on.  This batch made about 20 potstickers.
The cooking process that I used was as follows:  Put a little oil in a non stick pan and fry pot stickers until golden brown.
When browned, (and you have to be careful at this point because you're adding water to hot oil.  I actually used a paper towel to wipe between them to get some of the oil out) add about half an inch of water to the pan and quickly put a lid on to steam.  Steam until the water is almost gone and take lid off.  Then, cook until water is gone.  At this point I kept swirling the pan around so they didn't stick.
I saw some people did the opposite and steamed or boiled first and then pan fried but apparently they stuck really bad. 

Anyway, my end product.  Really good but I probably won't make them very often.  Very time consuming so I might make once in a blue moon and freeze the batch.  BTW, sorry about the messy plate but I forgot about taking an individual picture until I was on my last one...

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