Who doesn't love dumplings? A delicious filling wrapped inside a simple dumpling wrapper with a phenomenal dipping sauce to boot. I could literally sit and devour bowl after bowl of dumplings! Pork cabbage dumplings are probably my favourite type and fried dumplings are 100% the way I eat them. I love the texture you get from the crispy bottom when fried. Oh man, I am making myself hungry just writing this. How keen are you to make these now?
Why I Love This Recipe
- can be made in advance
- fun to make with friends and family
- inexpensive to make
- the Grenache I paired with them 😉
I first ate dumplings when I lived in NYC and absolutely loved them. My wife and I used to roam the streets down the East Village on days off browsing in quirky shops and checking out hole in the wall places that served the most amazing food. When we moved to Brisbane with our then 6-month-old the days of wandering and eating/drinking were in the past so I made it my mission to learn how to make pork fried dumplings. I wouldn't say my crimping technique will win me any awards but it's improving all the time.
These pork cabbage dumplings are full of flavour. They are something that's actually really fun to make as part of a group or with your family. Probably because you can either make them quicker or make a double batch and freeze them!
Making Pork Fried Dumplings
When I first started making these pork cabbage dumplings I was definitely a little intimated but to be honest I am not sure why. It's true I probably wouldn't open a dumpling shop or win a Masterchef challenge as my pleats aren't always perfect but when cooking them at home they are supposed to be rustic - right?
Dumpling wrappers are easy to find in many grocery stores these days and/or in your local Asian grocery store. The key is when working with them is not to let them dry out. Keep them covered with a damp cloth once opened. Any dumplings you aren't using then freeze them for next time.
Follow these steps and you will be on your way to folding your dumplings as good as I can 😉
- Place 1 tbsp of mince mixture into the center of the dumpling, using your finger wipe water around the edges of the dumpling
- Fold the dumpling in ½ pinching it gently in the middle
- On each side of the dumpling make two pleats starting close to the middle folding them towards the middle
- Then make another two pleats next to the first two moving out to the edge of the pastry.
- Pinch them all to seal them tightly
- Alternatively, you can do the most simple of folds and just fold them in ½, pinch them closed whilst pushing the air out. These aren’t as aesthetically pleasing but they are quick and simple to do
Dumpling Dipping Sauce
Pork cabbage dumplings are about 3 things. The filling, the crispy base and what brings it all together is a wicked dumplings sauce. Here is how I make mine - I hope you enjoy it!
- szechuan chilli oil - a spicy chilli oil with things like chilli flakes, anise, szechuan pepper,
- spring onion - chop the spring onion nice and finely
- kecap manis - a sweetened soy sauce available in most grocery stores
- garlic - mince it, grate it or chop it finely
- ginger - minced, grated or chopped finely
- chinese black vinegar - a dark and mild flavoured vinegar that's a staple in lots of Chinese cooking. Available in most grocery stores
To make a dipping sauce there really isn't much to it! Simply chop any necessary ingredients, mix them all together until combined and either pour over the pork fried dumplings or serve on the side as a dipping sauce.
Tips, Tricks & FAQ's
Preparation is key to success! Read the recipe fully first so you understand what you are doing. Start with a clean work surface/space and clean as you go. Have all your ingredients to hand when starting and all this will set you up for success when making my pork cabbage dumplings or any recipe you find on the interweb!
You sure can! The best way to freeze them is to lay them individually on a sheet tray and place them in the freezer for about an hour. Once frozen you can then put them into a ziplock bag or airtight container in the freezer. If you just place them directly into a bag they will all stick together before they have a chance to freeze
Pretty much the same way you would cook pork fried dumplings but just for a little longer. Remove from the freezer about 10 minutes before cooking (enough time to make a dipping sauce) and separate them out onto a tray. Fry as you would if not frozen and then steam them for about 7 -8 minutes to ensure the inside is cooked.
Most Asian stores will have Szechuan chilli oil but if not then check out other chilli crisp oils or even lee kum kee chilli oil that is available in grocery stores.
A winery that I have known and loved now for a little over 2 years. I first visited Seabrook Winery in September 2019 on my first visit to Barossa. It was on my list of little gems to visit and as the day was coming to an end with many successful wine tastings in the bag Mrs AnotherFoodBlogger (the chauffeur) was in desperate need of a riesling and somewhere to relax. With Seabrook just around the corner we decided to swing by. This is where we were met by Hamish who told us to put our feet up, relax and enjoy the view!
Well, we did just that. I settled into another informal, friendly but very educational tasting whilst, Little Miss AnotherFoodBlogger was handed a basket of toys, Mrs AnotherFoodBlogger a riesling. We ordered a cheese platter and enjoyed the beautiful view over the vineyard from the deck.
Grenache & Dumplings
Since then, I have produced 4 recipes (incl this one) for Jo & Hamish whilst the wife has polished off about 2 dozen of the riesling with 6 more just arriving the other day.
Recently, they have started a grenache and dumplings event on their deck on Fridays as Hamish and co are addicted to dumplings and boy do they make a good grenache to go with them too. So, when chatting to Jo (the real boss) she was pretty adamant that we put a dumpling dish together. My response to this was "you don't need to ask me twice to eat dumplings".
So, after a few ideas back and forward we settled on these pork fried dumplings that are filled with cabbage and shiitake mushrooms. Giving an extra layer of umami but also sneaking in extra veggies into the kids 😉
The Seabrook 'the broker' Grenache itself is a serious glass of enjoyment. Made from 50-year-old vines there are beautiful notes of cherries, raspberries with some hints of clove, tobacco and leather. A little bit of heat on the back palate that softened after a little time in the decanter. It's one that 3+ bottles need to be purchased so you can enjoy the evolution of it. I can only see it getting better and better over the next 3-5 years.
Alternative Dumpling Recipes
Inspired to try your hand at some fancy pleats or a simple fold in half dumpling? Either way, these pork cabbage dumplings will taste great but here are a few alternative options for you from myself and fellow foodies!
Pork & Prawn Dumplings by Yours Truly
Steamed Vegetable Dumplings by Lauren Matheson of 'Create Bake Make'
Cheeseburger Dumplings by Victoria Kabakian of 'Mission Food'
Boiled Dumplings with Juicy Snowpea Leaves and Shrimp by Cindy Chou of 'Healthy Feels'
Peanut Butter Kale Potstickers by Susan Keefe of 'Rhubarb and Cod'
Happy Cooking and Happy Eating Friends!!
- 30 dumpling wrappers
- 350 g pork mince
- 100 g shiitake mushrooms
- 50 g savoy cabbage
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tbsp kecap manis
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 6 tbsp szechuan chilli oil
- 1 spring onion
- 2 tbsp kecap manis
- 1 tsp garlic
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tbsp Chinese black vinegar
- bowl of water
- Chef Knives
- Chopping board
- mixing bowl
- frying pan w/ lid
- measuring/weighing utensils
- Slice the spring onion finely
- Mix all ingredients together and set aside in the fridge
- Blend the cabbage & shiitake mushrooms together
- Mix the mushroom mixture with pork, sesame, kecap & ginger
- Place 1 tbsp of pork mixture into center of the dumpling
- Using your finger wipe the top half of the dumpling wrapper with a little water
- Fold the dumpling wrapper in half to form a semi-circle, pinching it at the top
- You can either just pinch all the way round pushing the air out and sealing the wrappers edges or see the next step
- To add 2 folds/pleats to each side of your dumpling you need to crimp/fold one side of the wrapper back towards the center to make a pleat. Repeat this with the other side until you have 2 identical pleats.
- Next, make another pleat next to the first ones a little closer to the edge of the wrapper (see pics)
Cooking The Dumplings
- You can simply boil the dumplings for 2-3 minutes. Do this buy adding them to boiling water. Once the water is boiling after adding the dumplings pour in ½ cup of cold water and allow the water to boil again. Once boiling add another ½ cup of cold water. Repeat once more and your dumplings will be ready
- Remove and toss in the sauce
- On medium heat add 1 tbsp oil to a non-stick pan.
- Place the dumplings (flat side down) into the oil and cook for 2 minutes. I usually cook 5-7 at a time for 1 portion
- Add ¼ cup of water to the pan and cover with a lid – be careful as the oil/water will spit
- Cook for 5 minutes covered, adding more water if necessary
- Remove to a bowl and drizzle with some sauce
- dumplings won't last long in the fridge as the wrapper will go soggy so if you aren’t using them within a couple hours place them on a baking tray and into the freezer. Once frozen you can put them in a ziplock bag
- when cooking dumplings from the frozen. Separate them onto a baking tray and allow to defrost for about 10 minutes (enough time to make a dipping sauce), follow the instructions above but allow to steam for about 7 minutes to ensure fully cooked
- BE CAREFUL when adding the water as your pan will spit so be quick with the lid 😉
- you can substitute other mushrooms instead of shiitake if you can get any
- blending the vegetables first will allow them to mix evenly into the pork mince – it also hides them from the kids 😉