Episode 63: Dumplings
Shumai, Sanjana’s Momo Recipe, and Homemade Pierogi
Dumplings are a nearly universally loved food. Whether stuffed with soup, or meat, veggies, or tofu, we’re big fans over here at the Dinner Sisters. We sampled three of the many, many, many, types of dumplings, traveling from Poland to Canton, China, to Nepal. Each delicious, each our favorite.
Tender shrimp and pork dumplings that show up on many dim sum carts, these are dumplings that are actually fairly reasonable to make at home. Some versions of this dumpling have a topper of a whole shrimp or fish roe. This version keeps things simple- no topper here- while still delivering little pouches of goodness.
Like many dumplings, the filling keeps well in the fridge for a day or so. Make ahead to save yourself some work the day you fill the wrappers.
Grind the pork and shrimp together in a food processor to make an even mince.
Make these for the freezer- put on a sheet tray and freeze until solid. Pile into a plastic bag and steam directly from frozen.
Originating in the Himalayan region of Asia, momo are typically meat-filled dumplings with warm spices like turmeric and garam masala. Sanjana’s recipe uses ground chicken, plenty of ginger and turmeric, cilantro, and ghee for moisture. Already packed with flavor, she includes a tomato dipping sauce with fresh tomatoes, ginger and garlic, blended with cilantro and sesame seeds. The sauce is brilliant with the dumplings, but you might just catch yourself dipping into it for all sorts of reasons.
It bears repeating- make the filling ahead of time. The dipping sauce also fares well in the refrigerator.
See notes for shumai to freeze.
Carbs on carbs- who can say no? Pierogi are all about the comforting appeal of mashed potatoes wrapped in a soft dough. King Arthur’s version has sharp cheddar cheese to add a little bit of decadence to the filling, with sauteed onions to crisp up when the dumplings are toasted in a bit of butter. Maybe not health food but definitely food for the soul.
See notes for shumai to freeze. Boil, then fry in a bit of butter.
Like the other dumplings, make the mashed potatoes ahead of time. The dough can also hang out in the refrigerator for a day if well wrapped.
Make sure to use a sharp cheddar for the filling, it’s a welcome spark of flavor amongst the carby comfort.
From the Smorgasbord:
We invited our good friend Jenn to talk about pierogi, her family traditions, and her tips for making our favorite Polish dumpling. She was so fun to talk to and even offered her recipe for pierogi for our listeners. Thanks Jenn!
400 ml of all-purpose flour (sifted)
2-3 good pinches of salt (2 pinches in the flour, reserve one pinch for the egg and water mixture)
125 ml of luke warm water
1 tablespoon of butter (melted but not hot)
Sift the flour and the salt together. In a separate bowl whisk together the water, egg and 1 pinch of salt, whisk until frothy. Add the liquid mixture to the flour, fold together and then knead, 2-4 minutes total. Towards the end of kneading, add the butter and knead for another minute or so. The dough should come together nicely. Do not over knead the dough if you are making a double or triple batch of dough. Put the dough on a well floured surface and roll out. Thinner for cabbage filled and slightly thicker for potato or potato and cheese filled.