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 🙂


Chinese Inspired Chicken

I love Chinese food. Growing up we used to go to Chinese restaurants almost every week, sometimes more than once a week! ..the authentic ones, not the fast-food take-out places.

So I’ve grown up with dim sum being a huge part of my diet and even now get cravings and have to run into town to satisfy them lol! One of my favourites is ha gow (prawn dumplings) and 2 days ago when shopping I found some pre-packed in a local supermarket! Now they may not be as good as the freshly made ones in the restaurant I grew up visiting (and still go to now) but they looked tasty so I bought 2 packets and some vegetable dumplings too.

With them in mind I decided to cook a Chinese inspired meal last night, from the top of my head, and dust off my wok that I don’t use nearly as much as I should. Here’s the recipe, there’s a couple of alterations I’ll make next time (a bit more honey and soy sauce) but overall it was really delicious 🙂

Serves 2.

2 carrots, chopped into strips
2 leeks, chopped into strips
1 onion, sliced and separated into pieces
2 chicken breasts, sliced into strips
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tbsp honey
soy sauce

I started by chopping all of the vegetables while the wok heated up with a little bit of oil in.

I cooked the garlic in the oil for a little while, to flavour it, then added the onions and cooked until they started to soften.

Next I added the carrots and cooked for a few minutes before adding the chicken. When the chicken was cooked (after a few minutes) I added the leeks along with the honey and several generous dashes of soy sauce, stirring to coat everything.

I cooked it like this for a few minutes, stirring to mix everything well, then served in a dish with the dumplings (which I steamed) on the side 🙂

It was so simple to do and tasted great – when I do it again I’ll add a little more garlic I think and play around with the quantity of soy sauce and honey, because it could have taken more of each of those quite easily.

This will be my post for this week’s Hearth And Soul Blog Hop 🙂 I had so much fun last week I just had to take part again!