Monday, September 28, 2009

Happy 50th Blog Post :: Shanghai Soupy Dumplings




Yay, today is a big day!  My 50th blog post on 337 Greenwich.  I'm very excited... I started this blog as a way to document recipes but it's become much more.  It's been an inspiration to try new recipes, taste new ingredients, and basically make a mess in the kitchen without having to clean it up cause I'm 'busy blogging'! :-)  

Thank you for tagging along in all of my crazy kitchen experiments! 

Oh, I've gotten a few questions on what '337 Greenwich' stands for. Well, #337 is our apartment number and we live on Greenwich Street in the West Village.  So there you have it: 337 Greenwich.  I love our apartment, not only cause it has an elevator (kidding... although after coming from a 6th floor walk up, an elevator is a big plus!) but because it's A. and mine first apartment together, and home to our little kitchen that day after day churns out all of these dishes.   A. has now decided to call it 'the little kitchen that could'!

Anyway, I love hearing from you so send me any questions, notes, recipe ideas, random thoughts... anything, to: 337greenwich(@)gmail(dot)com  

There's many more posts to come! :-)

Ok - so back to the dumplings!  In the spirit of experimenting, this weekend we attempted to make one of A.'s favorite dishes: soupy dumplings.  Dumplings in China vary greatly by region, from different shapes to fillings.  Soupy dumplings originated in Shanghai.  They have a thin outer skin and are filled with seasoned pork meat, and a generous burst of soup. 



 These little flavor pouches are delicious when served freshly steamed.  You poke a little hole on the top with a chopstick, allow the steam to come out, sip a bit of the soup and then enjoy the savory morsel.  Delicious!  ...but seemingly very complicated to make, how does the soup get in there?



Well, I used Kitchen Musings easy to follow recipe which made the task a bit less daunting.  Since its our first time making dumplings, I bought the skins and the dumpling dipping sauce already made at Sunrise Mart (next time I'll attempt my own!).  The end result was delicious, my only regret was not doubling the recipe so that we could have had more leftovers to freeze.  

I've summarized the process into 10 easy steps, hope you enjoy!

SHANGHAI SOUPY DUMPLINGS
I wont re-write the ingredient quantities, rather follow Kitchen Musing's link for quantities.
(My Cooking Notes:  I added 1 generous tablespoon chopped cilantro to the pork filling for extra taste)

STEP 1:  Make the broth by boiling chicken stock, pork fat, scallions and ginger.



STEP 2:  Allow the broth to cool (I placed it in the fridge for about 20 minutes).  Then add the gelatin powder to the strained broth.  Reheat the broth and allow it to come to a boil.  Pour the clear broth in a baking dish (8" x 8", lightly greased) to make a thin layer.  Place the dish in the fridge to allow the gelatin to form.  (That's how the 'soupy' gets in the dumpling... you make a gelatin!



STEP 3: Remove the gelatin film from the dish and chop into small pieces. Set aside.



STEP 4:  Season the ground pork with scallions, rice vinegar, sesame oil, salt, pepper, ginger, soy sauce...and I added cilantro.  Allow the meat to rest for 30 minutes.



STEP 5: Combine the gelatin cubes with the pork meat.  Using your hands, mix well.



STEP 6:  Get your wrappers ready (I defrosted my store bought skins overnight), and keep a cup with warm water nearby.



STEP 7:  Now, you're ready to assemble the dumplings!  Lay one dumpling skin on your hand (it helps if you slightly cup your hand).  Add filling to the center of the dough.  You want to leave at least 3/4" of dough around the filling.  Start pinching the edges of the dough to create a small pouch with the filling on the bottom of the dumpling.  Be careful not to tear the dough.  Pinch the top of the dough to create a secure seal.  Use a bit of warm water on the tip of your fingers to help seal the dough if needed.



STEP 8: Voila! Soupy dumplings!  Place the dumplings on parchment paper as you work through the filling.



STEP 9:  Steam the dumplings in a steamer, lined with parchment paper and greased with a bit of sesame oil, atop boiling water for 8 minutes.  Do not overcrowd the steamer, leave about 1" between dumplings



STEP 10:  Serve immediately, and pair with a dumpling dipping sauce, enjoy!



3 comments:

veron said...

Yay! Your dumplings look great! And congrats on your 50th blog post!

tfh. said...

I am a new follower! Thanks so much for reading my blog. I think I've just fallen in love with yours. Goodness! So wonderful!

Carolina said...

WOW!! I have LOVED soupy dumplings since my time as a student in China and I can not believe you managed to make such awesome looking (and I am sure tasting) ones!!! I am really inspired by your blog and can't wait to make it back to 337 Greenwich to experience some of it first hand. =) BESOS, te quiero montones.

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