In this classic dim sum dish, the chives are mixed with shrimp and stuffed in a a dumpling. The crystal dumpling skin is made from a combination of wheat starch and tapioca starch which gives the dumplings a translucent look, and a chewy and “elastic” bite.
Chef’s tip: Make sure that you use *boiling* water when making the dough as the starch needs to be cooked to turn it into a gooey mixture that forms the binding for the dough.
2¼ cups wheat starch
3 Tablespoons tapioca starch
1½ cups boiling water
1½ Tablespoons vegetable shortening
12 oz raw shrimp, shelled and deveined (size 31/40 shrimp)
4 oz Chinese chives, blanched, minced to make 1 cup
¼ cup / 2 oz canned bamboo shoots, rinsed, pat dry and minced
4 Tablespoons cilantro, minced
1 Tablespoons soy sauce
2 Tablespoons Chinese rice wine or pale dry sherry
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
Some tapioca starch
Napa or savoy cabbage leaves, whole leaves, blanched
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons water
10 slices ginger, thinly julienned
Preparing the dough.
1. Combine the wheat starch and the tapioca starch. Form a well in the center. Gradually add the boiling water (must be boiling!), stirring until a ball forms.
2. Cool a little, while still warm, stir in the shortening, a little at a time. Transfer to a lightly floured board and knead for a few minutes until soft and smooth.
3. Divide the dough into 4 balls. Cover dough with a damp tea cloth for 15 minutes.
Preparing the filling
4. Chop/mince the shrimp with a cleaver on a cutting board until it becomes a rough paste. Place in a large bowl.
5. Cut the Chinese chives into 4 inch pieces, blanched in a pot of hot water (20 seconds). Remove, and squeeze dry between two plates. Chop the blanched chives finely. Finely chop the bamboo shoots and cilantro. Add to the shrimp.
6. Mix all the seasoning ingredients together. Pour into the shrimp and chives mixture and mix well.
Assembling the dumplings
7. Take a dough portion, work into a round ball, flatten into a disc and using a rolling pin, roll out dough (switching to a right angle direction to the previous direction every few times) until the dough is uniformly 1/8 inch thick. Use a round 3½ inch cookie cutter and stamp out round pastry skins. You should have about 40 skins. Cover dough with a damp tea cloth as you work.
8. Brush the edges of the pastry with a little water. Place the pastry skin in your palm. Place 1 teaspoon of filling into dough, being careful to avoid the edges. Fold into half to make a crescent moon. Using your thumb, form little pleats on the top edge of the crescent, and press the two layers together to seal. Make sure seams are well-sealed and place on a tray dusted with tapioca starch.
9. Placed onto a steamer that is lined with blanched cabbage leaves or perforated parchment
10. Steam over simmering water for 6-8 minutes or until the dumplings are translucent. Add water if necessary so that wok is not dried out.
Preparing the dipping sauce:
11. Julienne ginger, and mix with red wine vinegar and water. Serve with the dumplings.
Serves: 40 piecesTweet
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