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Cook once, eat twice: Chinese dumplings and fried rice

21.January 2010

It’s cocoon-busting time around here at Darby O’Shea. Sure, January 1 was the beginning of the new year and September is really the beginning of the new School Year, but January 25 is the beginning of the new Semester. I’ve been holed up for the last few weeks, all but hiding from the world and recharging before things get started next week.

The break between semesters
has been lovely as just that, a break, from everything. I’ve been reading trashy novels (and good ones), watching movies, hanging out with the pup, and trying to pull myself out of the lingering end-of-semester and holiday coma – too much food, too many people, too much laziness for too long.As it is, I haven’t been lazy about cooking, as such, but I have been exceedingly lazy about recording what I’ve cooked, how I’ve cooked it, and what it looked like. In the effort to shake off work-related laziness and get back in the swing of things, here we go.

We had my dear friend Liz (home from school for a break) and her other half, Mike, over last weekend and I got all excited about showing off some wild cooking. I settled on a menu of salt-crusted Bronzini (that’s a story for another day), roasted veggies with a sweet and spicy glaze, and Chinese dumplings as a starter. As soon as I saw the recipe for these dumplings in my latest issue of Fine Cooking, I knew I had (HAD) to try them.

The dough didn’t come together *exactly* like the recipe said it would (in fact, it was a mess, but that could be due to my poor effort at precision), but it worked in the end. I started with the mound/well of flour and discovered that not only was it a little difficult, but I didn’t have enough water. I put the flaky badness in a bowl and very aggressively forced some more water into the dough. After some frustrated kneading and letting the dough rest for the prescribed thirty minutes, I was pleased to see that it looked more or less like it was supposed to. The cutting and rolling of the dough went surprisingly well and proved to be a lot of fun with all four of us pitching in (even the boys, who aren’t especially enthusiastic about kitchen matters, but who ended up up to their elbows in flour just like me).The filling I came up with was an amalgamation of the suggested fillings from the magazine. A little of this, a little of that, and the result was a tangy, hearty, delicious lump of joy wrapped up in tender, elastic dough. Combined with the soy dipping sauce recommended by the magazine, this was one of the most satisfying recipes I’ve ever tried.

The dough recipe is here and there are also videos showing how it’s done. We followed the instructions for pan frying the dumplings, which was delicious. Highly recommend. Here’s my filling recipe:
Pork and Shiitake Dumpling Filling

  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 8 shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and sliced thinly
  • 6 oz. spinach
  • 3 medium scallions, thinly sliced
  • 3 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 T Mirin (I couldn’t find the recommended Shoaxing)
  • 1 1/2 T grated ginger
  • 1 T soy sauce
  • 2 t toasted Asian sesame oil
  • 1/2 t sugar
  • pepper
  1. Combine 2 T water and the sugar to a boil in a skillet over high heat. Add the spinach and cook until wilted (about a minute). When the spinach is cool, squeeze the excess liquid from the leaves and chop finely.
  2. Mix the pork with the garlic, Mirin (or Shoaxing), ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, and pepper.
  3. Add mushrooms and spinach to pork mixture and combine well.
  4. Chill filling mixture in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

In my effort to Cook once and Eat twice, I used the cup or so of leftover dumpling filling to make a delicious pork fried rice (a rather brilliant suggestion from Liz). Here’s a recipe.

Pork Dumpling Fried Rice

  • 1 c cold rice, preferably cooked the day before (I use brown)
  • 1 c leftover pork and shiitake dumpling filling
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, quartered lengthwise and sliced
  • 1 green pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • leftover soy-scallion dipping sauce (or plain soy sauce to taste)
  1. In a hot wok or large pan, heat vegetable oil, then saute pork dumpling filling until no longer pink.
  2. Add onion, pepper, carrot, and scallions to pork filling, saute until vegetables begin to brown.
  3. Add rice and saute all ingredients until everything browns and begins to crisp.
  4. Make a well in the middle of the pan and add the beaten egg to the middle of the pan. Stir as it begins to scramble. Before it sets completely, stir into the rice. Cook until egg is completely cooked through and begins to brown.
  5. Just before serving, add the soy-scallion sauce to taste. Thoroughly incorporate, stirring constantly to avoid burning.
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One Comment leave one →
  1. 25.January 2013 23:04

    Just made dumplings and a stir fry. Thanks for the idea!

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