Asian food has become a staple in the college diet in many forms. One of the best examples of this is the Jiaozi, which is the traditional name of the Chinese dumpling that has spread to Japan, Eastern and Western Asia. It is also the formal name of the famous pot sticker. The Chinese New Year is often celebrated with vast amounts of Jiaozi because their appearance is similar to the money (‘yuan bao’) that was used during the Ming Dynasty. Serving Jiaozi is believed to bring prosperity.
There are many ways to prepare a Jiaozi: boiled, steamed and pan fried are traditional, but today we will focus on one of the most popular and easy to prepare: the Chinese Pot Sticker.
- 3 cups of shredded cabbage
- 1/4 cup of chopped green onion
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 1 large clove of garlic, minced
- 1-2 lbs of ground pork, chicken, or turkey
- 4 cups flour
- 2 cups water
- pinch of salt
1. Grind, mince and shred all of the filling ingredients in one large bowl to create a smooth consistency. All ingredients should be chopped into tiny pieces.
2. Take about two tablespoonfuls of the mixture, roll it into a ball, place it in a wrapper and seal the edges together with water. You can fold these into any shape you want: square, triangle, circle ... use your imagination!
You can easily find premade won-ton wrappers in most grocery stores, but for the ambitious college foodie who wants to make her own, know that the amount of water will differ for every batch. Start with a smaller amount and add as needed. Good dough will be firm and feel silky. However, rolling out the dough to the ideal thin, round shape is very difficult because of its shrinking nature. Make sure each piece is less than 1/4 inches thick.
3. Place pot stickers sitting upright in a pan with oil and cook uncovered for about two minutes, or until brown, at medium heat. Next, add about 1/2 cup of water and cover for about 8-10 minutes on low heat (or until the water evaporates). Your finished pot stickers will look something like this.
Make these for lunch, dinner, multiply the recipe to serve at a party or make extras to freeze for later! Believe it or not, these guys can last 3-4 months if frozen in a secure package. This recipe will make about 50 pot stickers, which means that most of your energy will go into folding each edge together. If you have no energy but extra filling by the end of your meal, cook the meat and serve it as a side to noodles or any other Asian cuisine. Also, be sure to save some extra soy sauce (or sweet and sour sauce) to dip your finished products in! Happy cooking!
By: Rachel Davidson