Chinese New Year: Pea Shoot And Prawn Dumplings

This is another great dim sum recipe in the lead up to Chinese New Year, which is on February 3rd this year 🙂

One of my favouite dim sum is ha gow, which are prawn dumplings with a slightly sticky texture to the dough. I didn’t have a recipe for ha gow, but this seemed similar enough to make me want to try it! The recipe is from Dim Sum by Fiona Smith, which is packed with lots of great recipes.

Pea shoots are leaf shoots of the mangetout, snowpea or garden pea. They are sold in Chinese supermarkets and some grocers, and taste like the essence of peas! If you can’t find any though, don’t worry! Just use mangetout 🙂

The recipe says to serve these dumplings without any dip, so that the subtle flavours aren’t overpowered. But a simple dip of soy sauce, or even sweet chilli, would work to complement the flavours in my opinion.

Makes: 32
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 7 minutes

250 g fresh pea shoots or mangetout (snowpeas), chopped
500 g uncooked prawns (shrimp), shelled, deveined and coarsely chopped (about 250 g prepared)
4 cm fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 tablespoon Shaohsing (Chinese rice wine) or dry sherry (this is optional)
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 egg white, beaten
extra pea shoots or Chinese chives, to serve

Rice Flour Dough
175 g plain flour
125 g rice flour
2 tablespoons oil
250 ml boiling water

1. To make the dough, mix the two flours in a bowl, then stir in 250 ml boiling water and the oil. Stir until cool enough to handle, then knead to form a smooth mass. Put in a plastic bag ans chill for 30 minutes.

2. Put the pea shoots or mangetout in a colander and pour over boiling water, then quickly refresh under cold running water and set aside.

3. Put the prawns in a bowl and mix in the ginger, soy sauce, Shaohsing or sherry (if you’re using any), sesame oil and egg white. Set aside for 15 minutes to develop the flavours. Add the chopped pea shoots or mangetout.

4. Divide the dough into 32 pieces, roll into balls and cover with a damp cloth. Dust a dry surface with flour and, using a rolling pin, roll out a ball of dough to a circle, 8 cm in diameter. Put one heaped teaspoon of filling in the center, brush the edges with water, then bring them together to enclose the filling. Twist to seal and break off any excess dough. Repeat until all are made, keeping the dumplings covered as you make them.

5. Put the dumplings, sealed edge down, in a steamer and steam over boiling water for 7 minutes. Serve with extra pea shoots or chives.

They sound absolutely delicious! No picture yet because we aren’t making them until New Year (tomorrow), so I’ll update the post with pictures then 🙂


Soup Season: Garden Pea Soup

I love peas. In the age old question of “what luxury item would you take to a desert island with you?” it would be peas without a doubt! Fresh garden peas (or frozen ones) though, not the canned variety because that’s just blasphemy.

When my husband and I first started dating he bought me a surprise gift and gave me the hint that it was green, my immediate (and jokey) reply was “is it peas?!” and joking aside, I would have still been a happy girl if it was hehe.

So I decide to put my pea obsession to good use and make a garden pea soup 🙂 I didn’t follow a recipe, I made it up as I went along! But it’s quick and simple to do, very few ingredients and you can add more or less of each of them – or throw some more in there like adding a carrot or two, some leeks maybe, even some fresh mint or bacon at the very end. That’s why I love soups, they’re so versatile!

Makes 8-10 servings
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes

1 kg frozen garden peas (fresh from pods are just as good!)
2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 pints vegetable stock
1 pint boiling water
100 ml double or single cream (optional)

Add some butter to a large saucepan and cook the chopped onions until soft, add the crushed garlic and stir through, leave to cook for 2 minutes.

Add the peas – they don’t need to be defrosted, just add them right from the freezer bag, or shell them from the pods if you’re using fresh peas.

Stir and add the stock and extra water. You can add more or less stock and water depending on how thin/thick you would like your soup to be.

Stir through and leave to simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Blend in a blender or food processor then stir in the cream if using it (we decided not to). This is also the point where you could add chopped up cooked bacon and/or mint.

Even though we decided not to use the cream in the soup itself, we drizzled a little bit on top of each portion before serving. You could also add a few crispy bacon bits on top, or some grated parmesan cheese. …Or even all three!

We had a bowlful each, with some Warburton’s Seeded Batch, and it was delicious! I’m definitely going to make it again but with some parmesan shavings and bacon bits to top it off. This was so quick and easy to make and I’m all for ease when it comes to cooking!

The rest of the soup went into Pour And Store bags, as usual, to be stored in the freezer 🙂

This will be my post for this week’s Hearth And Soul Blog Hop 🙂 Be sure to check out the other recipes on there this week and to follow my blog for more tasty treats!