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Monday, March 3, 2014

Pork & Cabbage Gyozas with Soy Dipping Sauce

Pork & Cabbage Gyozas
I used to make these and wontons ALL the time before K. It was something that I could do while watching TV rather than snacking. Ever since K, I hadn't really had much time to do it. It didn't occur to me that Hubby may actually be craving it. Plus it's nice to have dumplings in the freezer ready to go whenever you want to make some for breakfast before work or a quick snack or lunch or even dinner!

Best part of all was when I found out something new about Hubby; I almost never find out anything new about him anymore after over a decade of being together. Apparently he knows how to fold these little guys. And he's pretty good at it too. Very impressive. <3

I learned how to wrap these little guys when I was working in a Japanese restaurant after high school. Hubby learned from his mom.


Pork & Cabbage Gyozas with Soy Dipping Sauce
(makes about 100 Gyozas)

Ingredients:
  • 2 lbs lean ground pork
  • 6 cups loosely packed napa cabbage, minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 Tbsps soy sauce, divided
  • 3 Tbsps grated ginger
  • 2 Tbsps Shaoxing wine
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil, more for dipping sauce
  • 100 round Gyoza wrappers (about 3 packages of the Double Happiness brand)
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • Chili oil, to taste
  • 2 Tbsps canola oil
  • Water

Directions:
  1. In a large mixing bowl, mix cabbage with salt. Set aside and let sit for 15 minutes to draw out all the water while you prepare the meat mixture & prepare your work surface.
  2. In another large bow, mix ground pork with 3 tablespoons of soy sauce, grated ginger, wine, sugar and 1 tablespoon of sesame oil until well combined. Set aside.
  3. Line 2 baking sheets or some large plates with wax paper. Set aside.
  4. Fill a small bowl with water. Set aside.
  5. After 15 minutes, use a cheesecloth or your hands to squeeze out all of the excess liquid. This will prevent the dumplings from getting soggy.
  6. Transfer drained cabbage into the meat mixture. Mix well with hands.
  7. Lay a dumpling wrapper on a dry work surface, and place a heaping teaspoon of the meat mixture in the center of the wrapper. With a fingertip moistened with water, trace a line along half of the edge of the round wrapper. Fold the wrapper over to enclose the filling, and pinch one end of the half circle to seal the edges together at that spot. Pinching the one end between your index finger and thumb in your left hand, use your right index finger to push the top fold to the left. Use the left index finger to pinch the new pleat down to seal and repeat until the dumpling has been sealed all around. Set the stuffed dumpling with the pleated wrapper edge up on the wax paper lined plate/baking sheet. Repeat until all the meat and cabbage mixture or dumpling wrappers are gone. (Click here if you need a video visual. This person does it very similar to the way I do it but with way more filling; I use less filling.)
  8. At this point, you can freeze all the dumplings for 2-3 hours before transferring them into bags for easier storage until you're ready to eat them.
  9. To cook, heat up canola oil in a large skillet with a tight fitting lid over medium high heat. Gently place frozen (or fresh but never defrosted or it'll be a soggy sticky mess) dumplings flat side down in the skillet; don't worry about crowding the pan, as the dumplings can touch each other. Arming yourself with the lid, quickly pour 1/3 cup of water into the skillet and quickly cover. Let cook until the water has almost all evaporated. Uncover and cook until the water is evaporated and bottoms are golden brown, gently shaking the pan occasionally to keep the dumplings from sticking to the pan. Transfer to a plate, golden brown bottoms up.
  10. Mix together remaining 3 tablespoons of soy sauce, vinegar, honey, a couple of drops of sesame oil and a few drops of chili oil in a small bowl for the dipping sauce.
  11. Serve Gyozas hot with the dipping sauce.