How to Make Dumplings

I have got many e-mails querying about how to make Chinese dumpling dough and  how to make dumpling wrappers. Previously I have made lots of Chinese dumpling recipes but did not provide a detailed instruction about how to make dumpling from starch. So here the tutorial comes. I finally made a video showing the detailed process of making Chinese dumplings from starch.

how to make dumplingshow to make dumplings
Generally, there are three parts of making dumplings:Making a dough for dumplings and make dumpling wrapper,making your favorite dumpling filling and decide how to cook and serve dumplings (steam, pan-frying or water-boiling)

How to make dumpling wrappers

  • 3 cups of high-gluten flour (you can use plain flour )
  • 200ml water +20ml more for adjusting
  • Pinch of salt
    Method
  • Mix salt with flour;Stir the water in the bowl with flour slowly and stir the flour with a chop sticker. Do not pour all the water directly so you can adjust the water amount accordingly.
  • Knead the flour into smooth dough possibly for around 5~8 minutes, cover with a cloth or plastic wrapper and set aside to rest for 1 hour to 2 hours. The longer rested, the softer the dough would be. Then knead the dough again for around 2 to 3 minutes until you get a smooth surface again. And choose the following options to make a round wrapper.
  • Roll the wrapper with a rolling pin: dig a hole in the center of the dough and then shape into a long log. Divide the log into small portions around 8g to 10g. Slightly dust working surface, press one portion down to a round disc Dust the working surface again. Take one dough and press it to a round disc. Rotate the wrapper with the same pace with your rolling pin. The rolled wrappers will have thicker center and thinner edges naturally.
  • Cut wrapper with a round cutter:Roll the entire dough into a large wrapper less then 0.2cm thin and then cut the wrappers out with a round cutter. You can choose either way you like.

Usually, dumplings filling can be beef, chicken, pork and shrimp. Choose your favorite ones. You can combine some of them together. Decide whether any side vegetables are required like mushrooms, celery, carrots, cabbages are great side vegetables for dumplings.It is really important to add some water to the filling in order to make it juicy. You can choose to keep the water from vegetables, add eggs or simply add water to the meat filling. Firstly mix the meat with the seasonings, stir in one direction for couples of minutes until the meat becomes slightly sticky and let it marinade.There are really tons of dumpling fillings you can refer to. Browse the following to get some inspirations:Chive and Pork dumplings ( chive and minced pork), Corn and shrimp dumplingCelery pork dumplingChinese chive pocket (a vegetable solution) and Chinese vegan potsticker(fried eggplants).

how to make dumplings

how to make dumplings
how to make dumplings

How to Make Dumplings

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Yield: Making around 60 dumplings

Serve: 4

How to make dumplings from starch with tips for making perfect dumpling fillings.

How to Make Dumplings

Ingredients

    Wrapper
  • 3 cups of flour (high-gluten or purpose flour )
  • 220ml water +20 ml more for adjusting
  • Pinch of salt
  • Filling
  • 2 cups ground pork +1/2 cup minced pork fat
  • 1/3 cup minced shrimp
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 2 tablespoons minced green onions
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon five spice powder
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups chopped Napa cabbage+1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 5 soaked mushrooms, minced

Instructions

    Wrappers
  1. Mix salt with flour; Stir the water in the bowl with flour slowly and stir the flour with a chop sticker. Do not pour all the water directly so you can adjust the water amount accordingly.
  2. Knead the flour into smooth dough possibly for around 5~8 minutes, cover with a cloth or plastic wrapper and set aside to rest for 1 hour to 2 hours. The longer rested, the softer the dough would be. Then knead the dough again for around 2 to 3 minutes until you get a smooth surface again. And choose the following two options to make the wrappers.
  3. Roll the wrapper with a rolling pin: dig a hole in the center of the dough and then shape into a long log. Divide the log into small portions around 8g to 10g. Roll each portion into a round wrapper using the method I am showing in the video. Slightly dust working surface, press one portion down to a round disc Dust the working surface again. Take one dough and press it to a round disc. Rotate the wrapper with the same pace with your rolling pin. The rolled wrappers will have thicker center and thinner edges naturally.
  4. Cut wrapper with a round cutter:Roll the entire dough into a large wrapper less then 0.2cm thin and then cut the wrappers out with a round cutter. You can choose either way you like.
  5. Filling
  6. Mix meat (shrimp and pork) with salt and seasonings. Stir in one direction for around couples of minutes until the meat filling becomes slightly sticky. Mince green onion and ginger. Mix with the filling and set aside.
  7. Chop Napa cabbage and slightly squeeze the water out after adding salt. Minced the pre-soaked mushrooms too.
  8. Combine the meat filling and side vegetables well and we are done with the filling.
  9. Place around 1 tablespoons of filling in the center of your wrapper. For home made wrapper, there is no need to wet the edges but for store-bought dumpling wrapper, it is necessary. Seal the dumpling completely. Repeat to finish all.
  10. Boiled version.
  11. Bring a large pot of water to boil in a pot. Place the dumplings in. Stir gently to prevent the dumplings stick to the bottom. Cover the lid and wait for the second boiling. Slightly pour a small amount of water can help to speed up the boiling process. Continue cooking until the dumplings are swollen and slightly transplant. Transfer out and serve directly with dips (usually vinegar +ginger shreds).
  12. Pan-fried version
  13. Over medium heat, heat around 1 tablespoon of oil in a nonstick pan. Place the dumplings in one by one. Fry until one side of the dumpling become slightly brown. Swirl around 2 tablespoons of water in and cover the lid immediately. So the water vapor can cook the dumplings completely. After around 1 to 2 minutes, lift the lid and continue fry until crispy again.
  14. Steamed version
  15. Place the dumplings one by one in your steamer and steam for 15 minutes over medium high fire.

Notes

You can freeze the raw dumpling like the store bought version for up to 2 months. Recipe is firstly published in 2014. Pictures and video updated in 2015.

Pan-fried version–potstickers

How to make dumplings-pan-fried version
How to make dumplings-pan-fried version

Comments

    • Elaine Luo says

      Thanks Holly for stopping by. Make dumpling wrappers from starch is really easy once you take action.

  1. JPAR says

    You keep saying ‘add water to meat’ and do this up to three times.
    How much water do you add?
    I’ve made several lots of dumplings in the past, but always suffered from the filling seeming to be too dry. Wonder if the addition of water is the solution Ive been looking for?

    • Elaine Luo says

      Hi Jpar,
      That’s the exact reason why the filling is too dry. The amount of water added each time depends on the amount of the meat filling. For 250g meat filling, I recommend adding around 1 tablespoon of water all together. Each time, stir in one direction until the water is well absorbed. But sometimes, the water contained in the different types of meat might differ. So it is hard to provide a detailed amount. The basic concept is to add water until the meat cannot absorb anymore water.

  2. CC says

    I’m so glad I found your website – I grew up eating many of these dishes and I can’t wait to try out some new recipes. Very authentic and complete with rules I will never understand (my mom also told me to only stir in one direction)! Keep up the good work 😉

    • Elaine Luo says

      Thanks for the lovely commenting. Personally I learned a lot from my mother too and sometimes she explains some of the reasons. But I get most of the experience from daily cooking. So practice makes perfect.

      Plus, I am really glad to help!

  3. sunita says

    Please I would like to know how to make the chicken dumpling filling moist.i would appreciate if u could email me as soon as possible. Thanks

    • Elaine Luo says

      Hi Sunita,
      To make the chicken filling for dumplings moist, there are several ways. Add egg white or add more oil with starch. Adding egg white would be an easier way. But you will need to stir the filling in one direction to mix them well and let the meat absorb some of the liquid. It is almost the same with pork filling.

  4. Don says

    elaine,

    thank you for sharing your fantastic recipes, as you have made sichuan ciusine at least visually more manageable for the home cook.

    i made the scallion pancake this evening and it turned out pretty good. i think with further experimentation it will turn out better as i would like to make it so its less dense.

    i also attempted making the dumpling wrappers but unfortunately to no avail. i tried with bith all purpose flour and plain white flour, but the dough was too wet to work with even after letting it rest. any other tips?

    cheers,

    don

    • Elaine Luo says

      Hi Don,
      Use high-gluten flour for dumpling wrappers next time. All purpose flour and plain white flour absorb less water thus making the dough too wet. And reduce the water slightly based on the brand of your flour; stop adding water when the flour is turned into flocculent texture.

    • Elaine Luo says

      It is Chinese black vinegar with shredded ginger. This is the most classic dipping sauce. You can also add some chili oil or sesame oil based on personal taste.

  5. Marie says

    Wonderful tutorial, I have just started recently to make potstickers and have found your recipe for wrappers and filling very informative. I will use your tutorial next time I make them. Many thanks.

    Marie in Ireland

    • Elaine Luo says

      You are quite welcome, Marie. Homemade wrappers are at least much better than store-bought ones. So try this next time and look forward to your good news.

  6. betty says

    I love the simplicity of this – thanks to your video tutorial. I will HAVE to try this…thank you for posting.

  7. Vlad says

    I’m just starting to browse your recipes and can’t decide on what to make first. But as my boys love dumplings I thought I’d start here. I just wanted to know if you have any egg free filling suggestions/alternatives. My girlfriend is alergic to eggs, but I’m sure she’d like to have some dumplings as well.
    Thank you!

    • Elaine Luo says

      Hi Vlad,
      Egg is strongly recommend but not must for dumpling fill. It is used to moist the filling(avoid drying out after cooking) and tenderize the meat. You can add some water in the meat (recommend 1 tablespoon of water for 1 cup minced meat) firstly and the mix with starch. The later way can keep the filling juicy and moist too.

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