My little dumpling
Hospobaby’s favourite dish at yum cha has always been the steamed dumplings. She loves trying the different fillings with Zoya sauce (soya sauce) and I always have a bag of frozen dumplings in our freezer for nights when I am too tired to cook.
Cassia, our second restaurant, used to be a Chinese dumpling house in its previous life. Hospobaby scored some miniature dumpling steamers, chopsticks and Chinese teapots from the old restaurant, and couldn’t wait to recreate a yum cha experience at home. Sid decided to give Zoya her own tutorial in dumpling making one afternoon at Sidart. They mixed all the ingredients for the dumplings and Sid gave the little chef a quick lesson in filling the dumpling wrappers and sealing them. Hospobaby picked up the skill quite easily and was soon making small wonky crescents of her own. The wait to get the dumplings cooked and drained was an interminable one for the dumpling lover. Her patience was rewarded when she finally got to dip her own handmade dumplings in tamari.
A day later she insisted on replicating the experience with her dumpling steamer at home. This time she stuffed the dumplings on her own while I helped her steam them. She even helped me out by making a stash for our freezer and I was instructed they were to be brought out whenever she had a dumpling craving.
Once these dumplings have been stuffed you can store them in the freezer and cook them as required.
Prawn and crab dumplings with bok choy
200g fresh raw prawns, finely chopped
25g coriander, chopped
1 thumb size piece of ginger, grated
Light soy sauce, to season
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 bag baby bok choy
8 large tiger prawns, shelled and deveined
Tamari, to serve
- Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.
- In a mixing bowl combine the crab meat, prawn meat, coriander and ginger. Season with light soy and sesame oil.
- Fill a small bowl with water to dip a pastry brush or your fingers. Place a small amount of the crab and prawn mix in the centre of each dumpling wrapper. Dip either a pastry brush or a finger in water and brush the edges of the dumpling wrapper.
- Fold each wrapper in half and crease the openings to form crescent shapes.
- Drop the dumplings into the pot of boiling water and cook for 4-5 minutes or until the dumplings swim up to the top. Remove cooked dumplings using a slotted spoon and place on a serving platter
- Cut the baby bok choy in half vertically, trim any woody bits and rinse under running water to get rid of any mud.
- Drop the bok choy into the boiling water and cook for 2 minutes or until tender.
- Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan and sear the prawns on both sides until cooked. Season with a pinch of salt.
- Serve the dumplings and bok choy topped with the prawns and a drizzle of tamari.
Dumpling wrappers can be found in most Asian grocers and some fruit and vege shops. You can freeze any unused wrappers.
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*”Hospo”, short for hospitality, is a term used regularly in the hospitality industry. Chand and Sid own the restaurants Sidart and Cassia, so Zoya has been part of the hospitality industry from day one, hence the term “hospobaby”.