Mushroom, chilli and cabbage dumplings in broth
Dumplings: steamed, poached, pan or deep fried, I love them all equally and without exception. I admit, they can be a little fiddly, even arduous to prepare, but once the filling is made you simply need to gather up a few willing participants to assist with assembly. We often have dumpling night at our friends’ place, where the task of filling, folding and sealing the little parcels is shared amongst the four of us. With wine and conversation flowing freely the dumplings soon pile up, a communal effort for a shared feast!
It can be tricky to find a good variety of fresh Asian mushroom here in Dunedin, so I used dried for the dumpling filling, reserving the soaking liquid to enrich the broth. But if you are lucky enough to find some fresh shitake or oyster mushrooms then by all means, go fresh for the filling. You will need around 300g of fresh mushrooms, finely chop and fry as per step 2 below.
Makes 30 Dumplings
100g dried mushrooms – I used a mix of shiitake, oyster and black fungus
2 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp canola oil
3cm piece ginger, peeled and very finely diced
1 long red chilli, very finely diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 cups very finely shredded cabbage
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp Chinese black vinegar
2 tbsp oyster sauce
Generous handful fresh coriander, finely chopped
Generous handful garlic chives, finely chopped
30 wonton wrappers
1 L chicken stock
3 cups liquid leftover from soaking mushrooms
5cm piece ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and squashed
2 tbsp Chinese rice wine
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp chopped coriander stems
1 tbsp chopped garlic chives
1. Place dried mushrooms in a medium-sized bowl and cover with hot water. Soak for at least 1 hour. Drain (reserve soaking liquid for broth) and very finely chop.
2. Heat sesame and canola oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add ginger, chilli and garlic and cook for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Add mushrooms and cabbage and cook for 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently, until cabbage is soft. Add soy sauce, Chinese black vinegar and oyster sauce. Stir well to combine, cook for 2 minutes then remove from heat, stir through chopped coriander and garlic chives and set aside to cool completely.
3. Take a wonton wrapper, run a wet finger around the edges, place a heaped teaspoon of filling in the centre, and press the corners together to seal. Place aside and cover with a damp tea towel. Continue until all wrappers are filled.
1. Bring all ingredients to the boil in a medium-sized saucepan. Simmer for 15 minutes, strain and return liquid to the pot.
2. Add dumplings 5 or 6 at a time, simmering for 4-5 minutes until wrapper is cooked through.
Serve dumplings in a deep bowl of broth, topped with extra sliced red chilli, coriander and garlic chives.