|Boiled Chinese dumplings|
Eventually — just one step left before sitting at the table and enjoying your work! :))) As mentioned before, Chinese dumplings can be boiled, steamed, or lightly fried. In this recipe we follow the traditional method — to boil the dumplings in water.
Boiling the dumplings
1) Fill in a deep saucepan or ‘stockpot’ (probably) with water, and bring the water to boil.
Once the water is boiling, start putting the prepared dumplings into the water. Don’t put too many within one go, otherwise they will get all sticked together, and will also take longer to boil. (The idea is not to leave the dumplings in the water too long, so only put dumplings in when the water is boiling, and take them out as soon as they are done.) While doing this, use a skimmer to stir the dumplings from the bottom of the saucepan up. ( dumplings can easily sink and stick to the bottom.)
3) Sprinkle some salt into the water – this could prevent the dumplings from getting sticked together.
4) Stir the dumplings time to time.
When the water boils again, pour in a cup of cold water to cool it down, then allow it to boil again. If you are making meat dumplings, then repeat this step again; if you are making vegetable dumplings, you can turn off the fire, remove the dumplings from the saucepan and serve them on a plate using the skimmer.
Serving the dumplings
Traditionally, the dumplings are served with a ‘dip’ – a mixture of soy sauce and vinegar. In most restaurants in Northeast China, you can see a small bottle of light soy sauce and rice vinegar on the tables, sometimes, there are also pots of chili oil as well.
Here is the delicate ‘dip recipe’ we commonly prepare at home:
Mix light soy sauce, rice vinegar, a little pinch of white sugar, sesame oil, ‘minced’ garlic and chili oil (optional).
However, most of times, just simple ‘old vinegar’. I love it so much, every time eating dumplings at home back in China, when I look up, my mum always says that I had too much vinegar, my lips went white, I looked very funny in the mirror. :)))
Oh, one more thing, since the dumplings are so easy to get sticky after boiling, do move them around in the plate while you are eating time to time, at least do it once a couple of minutes after putting them on the plate. :))) Also, don’t worry if some of your dumplings are broken in the water, then you can just have the remaining water as soup, the water is flavored and super tasty. In fact, at home, after having dumplings, people like to have a bowl of ‘soup’ to finish off the meal. :))
—— This is the end of my ‘Dumpling’ series… for now…. Hope it is just in time for your coming holiday. :)))