How to make the most Chinese food - dumplings

Karla MillerFebruary 21, 2023
Photo by KayshaPhoto by Kaysha

Dumplings have been a staple food in Chinese cuisine for over 1,800 years. The earliest evidence of dumplings can be found in the Book of Han, which was written during the Eastern Han Dynasty (25-220 AD). It is said that a man named Zhang Zhongjing, who was a famous physician and herbalist, created the first dumplings as a way to treat frostbite during the winter months. The dumplings were made with meat and vegetables, and they were cooked in hot water to warm the body and help with circulation.

Over time, dumplings became a popular food among the Chinese people. They were eaten during festivals and celebrations, and they were also given as gifts to friends and family. Today, dumplings are enjoyed around the world, and they have become a symbol of Chinese cuisine.

Photo by Abhishek Sanwa Limbu on UnsplashPhoto by Abhishek Sanwa Limbu on Unsplash

There are many different types of dumplings in Chinese cuisine, each with its own unique flavor and texture. Some of the most popular types of dumplings include:

1. Jiaozi - Jiaozi are crescent-shaped dumplings that are typically filled with pork, cabbage, and scallions. They are commonly eaten during Chinese New Year and other festive occasions.

2. Shuijiao - Shuijiao are boiled dumplings that are typically filled with ground pork, cabbage, and other vegetables. They are often served with a dipping sauce made from soy sauce, vinegar, and chili oil.

3. Wonton - Wonton are small dumplings that are filled with pork, shrimp, or vegetables. They are often served in a clear broth, and they can also be deep-fried and served as a snack.

Photo by Frank Zhang on UnsplashPhoto by Frank Zhang on Unsplash

Making dumplings requires a few key ingredients, including:

Dumpling wrappers - Dumpling wrappers can be found in most Asian grocery stores. They are made from wheat flour and water, and they come in round or square shapes.

Filling - The filling for dumplings can vary depending on the type of dumpling you are making. Some common fillings include ground pork, cabbage, scallions, shrimp, and mushrooms.

Seasonings - Seasonings for dumplings can include soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, garlic, and white pepper.

Dipping sauce - A dipping sauce for dumplings can be made from soy sauce, vinegar, chili oil, and sugar.

Photo by Cats ComingPhoto by Cats Coming

Dumplings are a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in many ways, whether it's steamed, boiled, fried, or added to soup. Making dumplings can be a fun and satisfying experience, but it can also be intimidating for those who have never tried it before. In this article, we will provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to make dumplings from scratch.

Photo by Vita Marija Murenaite on UnsplashPhoto by Vita Marija Murenaite on Unsplash

   2 cups all-purpose flour

  1/2 cup cold water

  1/4 teaspoon salt

  1 pound ground pork or other meat/vegetarian filling of your choice (e.g. shrimp, chicken, beef, mushroom)

  1 tablespoon soy sauce

  1 tablespoon rice wine

  1 tablespoon grated ginger

  2 cloves garlic, minced

  1/2 cup chopped scallions

  1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

  Salt and pepper to taste

Making dumplings can seem intimidating at first, but it is actually quite simple once you get the hang of it. Here are the steps to make the most delicious Chinese dumplings:

Step 1: Make the dough

To make the dough for your dumplings, you'll need flour, salt, and water. Start by mixing the flour and salt together in a bowl. Slowly add water, mixing as you go, until the dough comes together in a ball. Knead the dough for a few minutes, then cover it with a damp towel and let it rest for 30 minutes.

Step 2: Prepare the filling

While the dough is resting, you can prepare your filling. Dumpling fillings can be made with anything from pork and cabbage to shrimp and mushrooms. Chop your ingredients finely and mix them together in a bowl, adding any seasonings or sauces you like.

Step 3: Roll out the dough

After the dough has rested, roll it out on a floured surface until it is very thin. You can use a rolling pin, but many people prefer to use their hands to stretch the dough out. Cut the dough into circles using a cookie cutter or the rim of a glass.

Photo by tom LPhoto by tom L

Step 4: Fill the dumplings

Place a small spoonful of filling in the center of each dough circle. Be careful not to overfill the dumplings, or they will be difficult to seal.

Step 5: Seal the dumplings

To seal the dumplings, fold the edges of the dough circle up and around the filling, pinching the edges together to create a seal. You can also pleat the edges of the dough for a more decorative look.

Photo by Elina FairytalePhoto by Elina Fairytale

Step 6: Cook dumplings.

There are many ways to cook dumplings, but most involve boiling or steaming the. To boil dumplings, fill a large pot two-thirds of the way with water. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Add as many dumplings as can fit comfortably in a single layer in the pot and cook them until they float. Let them cook an additional four to five minutes.

Now you can scoop up the dumplings and enjoy them!