I can be a health freak at times. There are phases when I go into a detox mode and hunt for all things unprocessed, fresh and healthy. In fact, I had even taken to growing some of my own produce such as spinach, chillies, red amaranth and such on my windowsill and what beauties they had turned out to be. But fate wasn’t in their favour and they met with a tragic ending. A day before I was to harvest these goodies, an unfriendly neighbourhood mouse decided to murder them.
But anyway, coming back to the recipe in this post, I made this one about a couple of months back and it really is a health lovers delight. Its steamed, its filled with fresh vegetables and it tastes pretty beautiful and natural.
I have had its fried variants in restaurants but never the steamed versions (my family isn’t a huge fan of steamed stuff..but they did like this one).
Dim sums or wontons or dumplings – whichever you prefer calling them, the basic technique and fundamentals are the same in creating them.
I picked up vegetables that I found appealing and just treated them to a little salt and love and filled the dumplings.
The dipping sauce in this dish adds all the drama needed. You can make variants that you prefer and that match well with the filling of the dumpling. You can even try filling the dumplings with prawns or shrimps or chicken but unfortunately, I don’t eat or cook with them..so, I wouldn’t really be the best judge on these flavours. But I hear prawns and garlic with a bit of ciliantro would be a good combination. (Not eating them does not mean I keep my ears and eyes closed on them).
Dim Sums – My way
For the dough:
Plain flour : ¾th cup
Salt – a pinch to taste
Oil – 1 tablespoon
Water – about 50 – 75MLs. (Enough to bind the dough)
Cabbage: ¼ th of a small one
Green bell pepper: 3/4th
Shallots: 2-3 nos.
Celery: ½ stick
The Dipping sauce
Light Soy sauce – 3 tablespoons
Garlic – 1 small clove crushed to a paste
Wasabi paste – ½ teaspoon
Cilantro – 1 tablespoon finely chopped
For the filling
- Chuck all the ingredients in a food processor and blitz till rough granules.
- If a food processer isn’t available, chop all the ingredients very finely.
- Season with salt and pepper.
Note: Make the filling only when ready to fill the dumplings else it will lose water leaving them soggy.
For the cover
- Mix the flour, oil, salt and water and knead soft dough.
- Rest for about 20 minutes covered with a moist tea towel.
- Once rested, make small balls of the dough and roll them thinly as possible.
- Spoon a little filling in the dough cover rolled and gather the edges together to encase the filling inside.
- You could even try and make half-moon shaped ones.
- Make sure the edges are all sealed well and there are no holes in the dumpling you have just created.
- Use a cane steamer (usually used in Chinese dumplings) or a double boiler steamer assembly and steam the dumplings until translucent or shiny. This can take about 10-15 minutes but you will get an idea when they are cooked when you look at them.
- Serve hot with the dipping sauce.
For the Dipping sauce
- Mix all the ingredients together.
- Usually the soy is salty and hence, you might not need to add the additional salt but check based on your taste buds.
As always, I haven’t really measured anything but gone by eye and feel. Trust your instincts when you cook and don’t stick to measurements all the time.