A few weeks ago, we were extremely excited to receive our new dining table. The table was a wedding gift from my parents, and after finally selecting and ordering the perfect table and chairs, we waited impatiently to receive the call from the store to tell us that it was ready.
We couldn’t be happier! The table is made of Tasmanian oak, is stained a very dark brown, and the chairs are covered in a deep red fabric. Appropriately, the colour of the table is ‘dark chocolate’ and the chairs are ‘red wine’.
Of course, a new table deserves a fantastic meal! To celebrate our new table, I wanted to make something special and interesting, something that I have never before attempted.
I knew just what to make… After posting about my new bamboo steamer a few weeks ago, a fellow blogger mentioned using a steamer to make dumplings. I love dumplings, I love Asian food, and I love my steamer – why had I never tried making dumplings?!
I was a bit nervous about making something that seemed to have such potential for disaster. Would the dumplings stick to the steamer or stick to each other? Would they be raw or end up glooey and gloopy? Would the texture be too watery, or end up as hard as a rock? Maybe they would they be fine, but far inferior to the takeaway dumplings we love…
I was delighted to find that the taste was great and the texture was close to perfect. I had a few dumplings stick and break while I was making them, but I found that by keeping them well-spaced, lining the steamer with baking paper, and steaming them for exactly 10 minutes, they were perfect.
I made three different types of dumplings: pork with chinese sausage (triangles); chicken with chilli (open dumplings); and Thai prawn (parcels). I steamed the chicken and prawn dumplings, but decided to try boiling the pork dumplings. This worked just as well at steaming. I also used some of the leftover mince filling to make some chicken and pork cakes, which I panfried. This is also a good way to experiment with the taste of the filling before constructing the dumplings.
I served them with my “cheats” nam jim sauce and some soy sauce.
I couldn’t believe how easy this meal was, and how delicious the dumplings ended up! Why haven’t I been making these for years?