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Taro Dumplings

from "Dim Sum" by Ellen Leong Blonder

Ingredients for filling (12 dumplings)

  • 2 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 teaspoons peanut or vegetable oil
  • 2 ounces pork shoulder, cut in 1/4 inch dice
  • 1 ounce shrimp, peeled, deveined, and cut in 1/4 inch dice
  • 1 scallion ( white and green parts), thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon rice wine or dry sherry
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon cold water
Instruction to make the filling
  1. Put the shiitake mushrooms in a small bowl and cover them with hot water. Let them stand for 30 minutes to soften. Drain the mushrooms and cut off and discard the hard stems. Rinse the caps, squeeze them dry, and dice fine. Dice shrimps, pork and scallion.
  2. Heat a wok or large skillet over high heat; then add the vegetable oil. When it is almost smoking, add the pork, shrimp, mushrooms, and scallion, and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the soy sauce, rice wine, sesame oil, salt, and white pepper and cook for 30 seconds. Stir in the cornstarch mixture and cook for 30 seconds longer, or until thickened. Remove the mixture from the heat and let it cool. Divide the mixture into 12 portions.
Ingredients for dough (12 dumplings)
  • 7 ounces(200 grams) taro root, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch dice if you are steaming, or wash but do not peel if you are using a microwave.
  • 5 tablespoons(60 grams)vegetable shortening
  • 3.5 oz.(100 grams) wheat starch
  • 1+1/3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • a pinch of salt
  • 7/10 cup=5.6 oz. (160 grams) boiling water
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • vegetable oil for deep-frying
Instruction to make the dough
  1. Microwave method: Wash taro roots well. Put them in a ceramic bowl and cover with plastic. Heat until soft. Peel.
    Steaming method: Set up a steamer, and then bring the water to a boil. Steam the taro root for 20 to 30 minutes, or until soft.
  2. Peel the taro roots and transfer them to a deep, flat-bottomed dish. Mash them while they are still hot. Let it cool for 5 minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl sift together:
    3.5 oz.(100 grams) wheat starch
    1+1/3 tablespoons cornstarch
  4. Add 7/10 cup=5.6 oz. (160 grams) boiling water to the flour mixture all at once and mix well while it is hot:
  5. Add mashed taro into the dough. Knead until taro and flour are well mixed. Add:
    1 tablespoon sugar
    1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
    a pinch of salt
    and mix well.
  6. Add 5 tablespoons(60 grams) vegetable shortening and blend it to a smooth dough. Wrap the dough with plastic and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  7. Divide the dough into 12 lumps.
  8. Wet your hands and hold one lump of dough in your palm. Flatten the lump slightly; then put 1 portion of the filling onto the center. Mold the dough completely around the filling into a football shape. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.
  9. Deep fry at around 350F. until brown.

This recipe is from "Dim Sum: The Art of Chinese Tea Lunch" by Ellen Leong Blonder. She provides 60 recipes, from siu mai to egg custard tarts, all illustrated by her own lovely watercolors. Every recipe I have tried turned out successful.

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