Great Cooking

Chinese dumplings and potstickers
Recipe: chinese dumplings and potstickers
[warning: a long post]
Do you know what that one recipe was that started you on your cooking passion? I have cooked since I was a kid, but I didn’t get serious until I was a sophomore in college and I felt this cultural obligation to make dumplings from scratch to celebrate the Chinese New Year. Dumplings have lodged themselves in my head as my link to Chinese cooking and culture, but even better than that – mastering dumplings gave me the confidence to go forward and try other recipes and techniques.

for the pork filling

I posted Making Chinese Dumplings with Jen on my website several years ago (it now lives here). People have written asking about fillings, thanking me for my recipe, asking me to post more versions… The endeavor to make Chinese dumplings isn’t like pouring a can of soda – it’s quite involved and taking the photos adds considerably more time. Seeing as my days of free time may be near an end, I decided Making Chinese Dumplings with Jen could use an upgrade and an added variation. Besides, that old version was created in graduate school, a time of simultaneously happy and extremely bad, miserable, loathsome, angry, depressing, unhappy associations for me.

there is an ungodly amount of chopping involved

First off, the process for making the dumplings and the potstickers is the same until you actually cook them. You steam or boil the dumplings, you pan fry (mmmm, fry…) the potstickers. I ate enough dumplings in my childhood that I feel I need to make up for it with potstickers now. That’s not true – I’m a sucker for fried things. I generally make true dumplings on Chinese New Year because Mom and Grandma have scared me into thinking I’ll be poor if I don’t. Something about eating dumplings means money, tofu is luck, something else is health, and the list goes on. I play it safe and eat everything.

adding some sesame oil, soy sauce, and cornstarch to the mix