Felix Food has been sharing simple and quick recipes for the past few issues, and that’s great! Hopefully they’ve helped you to survive the term in some ways. But don’t you occasionally imagine yourself cooking a Michelin-starred dish, unleashing your inner chef, and it no longer mattering if you get a First because you’ll be earning millions as a celebrity chef? Great dreams… Jamie Oliver dreams or not, it’s time to grow up. And now that we are in December, with winter break in the very near future, you might finally have time (and no excuses) for recipes more complex than instant noodles or Tesco meal deals.
Wonton or dumplings, whatever you call it, you can’t deny that, with its succulent skin, this juicy, savoury ball of happiness is the ultimate comfort food. Traditionally, dumplings are eaten when there’s something to celebrate – during Lunar New Year’s eve or during the first day of winter solstice, where every family gathers round a table and chats away. Maybe that’s why dumplings always give those growing up in these cultures a sense of home and reunion.
London has some great dumpling places, but most of the time they can burn a hole through your wallet. Why not make it yourself then? 50-60 dumplings for less than £10 sounds like an awesome deal for me. So there you go, impress your friends and family with your hidden cooking talent.
This recipe is terribly tedious, I know, but I also believe that the satisfaction you feel gobbling up those babies will outweigh the trouble. Get your friends and family to make it together and it’ll be a great bonding session.
You will need…
- 500g minced pork
- 2 stalks of spring onion
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 1 whole yellow onion
- 1 whole carrot
- 3 spoons of light soy sauce
- 2 spoons of oyster sauce
- 5 fresh shiitake mushrooms (optional)
- Salt and white pepper to taste
- Wonton skins (make them on your own or buy them from an Asian grocery store)
- Chop the carrot, garlic, yellow onion, shiitake mushrooms, and green onion as finely as possible. A food processor can be used to save time.
- Mix the chopped ingredients, along with the light soy sauce, oyster sauce, salt and white pepper, with the minced pork in a mixing bowl.
- Form a meatball the size of a 1p coin and place it on the wonton skin. Wet your fingers with some cold water to help seal the wonton skin during the folding process. Ensure that the skin is not torn while folding. There are several ways to fold the wonton skin which are:
- Fold one corner to another corner of the wonton skin diagonally to form a triangular shaped wonton dumpling.
- Fold one corner to another diagonal corner, then pull the bottom corners towards each other and away from the first vertex to form a Chinese gold ingot shaped dumpling.
- Pinch all four corners together to the middle to form a pouch shaped dumpling.
- The dumplings can be either deep-fried with vegetable oil until the skin is golden brown, boiled into a soup for about 6 minutes, or steamed for about 15 minutes. Serve with sweet chilli dipping sauce.
CHINESE FRIED RICE
If, after 50 dumplings, you’re still not full, then here’s another recipe for you. Scrap those visits to fancy, potential-to-cripple-you-financially Chinese restaurants.
You will need…
- 3 cups of cooked long grain rice (use overnight rice for better texture)
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons of light soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon of oyster sauce
- Vegetable cooking oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 can of spam (can be substituted with 100g of chicken meat or pancetta)
- 1 cup of mixed frozen vegetables (carrots, peas and corn)
- Whisk the eggs in the bowl with a bit of salt. Heat the pan on a medium-high heat and add a tablespoon of oil.
- Fry the eggs and break them apart while cooking as if you are making scrambled eggs. Remove the cooked eggs from the pan and set aside for now.
- Wipe the pan clean with a kitchen towel and 2 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat.
- Add in the spam (or meat of choice) and stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes. Add in the mixed vegetables and stir fry for another minute.
- Add in the cooked rice into the pan along with the light soy sauce, oyster sauce, salt, and pepper. Stir fry for another 3-5 minutes and ensure that the rice is evenly coated with the sauce.
- Add in the scrambled eggs from earlier and mix them well. Serve hot.