Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Tofu & Cabbage Potstickers

Continuing on from yesterday's bao/buns is the potsticker. A dumpling that is both pan fried and steamed at the same time resulting in one crispy golden side and one gooey side. These are one of the easiest dumplings to make and were my first attempt at dim dum. 

These little dumplings can be made up to the point of cooking and then refrigerated for up to a day or frozen and cooked straight out of the freezer.

I also made some of these potstickers gluten free by using the rice paper roll sheets that I made vietnamese salad rolls with instead of the wanton wrappers. They are more fiddly to make as the rice wrapper is harder to handle and need to be cut to size using either a cookie cutter or scissors or even a pizza cutter. They also don't look quite so pretty as they are more translucent and so you can see the filling. However, they do work and hold together and taste just as good as the original. 

Tofu & Cabbage Potstickers (makes approx 12 dumplings)
Vegan, vegetarian, diary free, gluten free

100g Firm tofu (I used yellow pressed tofu)
100g Chinese/napa cabbage
40g Fresh oyster mushrooms
1/2tbs Gluten free soya sauce or tamari
1/2tsp Sugar
1tsp Sesame oil
Black pepper
1tbs Shaoxing rice wine or gluten free dry sherry 
12 egg free wanton wrappers (if can have gluten) or at least 5 sheets of rice paper (get as thick as you can get and ensure they are gluten free)
2tsp cornfour mixed with 1tsp water to form a paste plus extra cornflour for susting
Vegetable oil for frying

  •  First make up your filling as it will need time to cool to make it easier to work with and less likely to split the wanton wrappers. 
  • Drain any liquid off the tofu and slice into small chunks or alternatively mash into small pieces. Thinly slice the cabbage and oyster mushrooms. Add these ingredients to the pan along with the tamari/soya sauce, sugar, sesame oil, a grinding of black pepper and the rice wine/sherry. 
  • Heat over a medium heat for a few minutes until the cabbage has wilted and the sauce has boiled. Take off the heat and set aside to cool. 
  • Once the filling is cool and you are ready to cook the potstickers you will need to prepare your wrappers. If you are using rice paper sheets then they will need wetting to make them malleable them before cutting to shape. If you are using wanton wrappers then skip this next step. 
  • For the rice paper sheets: Fill a bowl with warm water and dip one of the sheets into it. Once the sheet has started to get bendy and less like a sheet of card and more like cloth then take it out and cut into circles using a cookie cutter (10cm or 4" diameter) or a square using scissors or a pizza cutter. Only soak and cut one of the sheets before filling as it gets harder to work with the rice paper once it has been soaked and isn't worked with straight away. 
  • Lay the wanton or rice paper wrapper onto a plate lightly dusted with cornflour. Spoon 1 heaped tsp of the tofu and cabbage mixture into the centre of the wrapper. Take the cornflour mixture and smear a thin layer around the edge of the wrapper. Fold wrapper in half to form a half moon (if using circular wrappers) or triangle shape (for square wrappers) and gently press the edges to seal. Repeat until all filling is used up.
  • The dumplings may now be cooked or frozen until needed. 
  • To cook add a small amount of vegetable oil into a frying pan or saucepan which has a lid. Heat over a medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the potstickers and fry for 2-3 mins until the underside is brown. Now, without turning the potstickers over, add 1-2tbs of water to the pan and immediately put the lid on the pan. Cook for a few more minutes until all the water has evaporated from the bottom of the pan. Serve straight away with your favourite dipping sauce. 
  • To freeze, place the ready made dumplings on a lightly dusted baking sheet, ensuring that none are touching each other. Cover with cling film, plastic wrap and place in the freezer. Once frozen these dumplings can be removed from the tray and kept in freezer bags until needed. There is no need to defrost just cook  as above but allow cooking extra time.

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