Better than any dumpling from a restaurant, Savory Chinese Steamed Dumplings. The taste of home.
Happy Chinese New Year! Happy Lunar New Year! I am so happy to share my grandma’s Fun Gor recipe to celebrate the new year! My grandma has been making these dumplings for decades. It is made with a thick wheat starch skin that becomes translucent after steaming, and it has a pork-based filling. These dumplings are made in large batches, perfect for a quick couple of meals.
The beauty of these dumplings is that once you get the shell down, the filling is up to you! For example, as a want-to-be vegan, I like to fill my dumplings with glass noodles, mushrooms, and vegetables, and I use the same seasonings when it comes time to stir fry everything together. Today, I am going to share my grandma’s traditional recipe with no alterations, but I look forward to sharing alterations in future posts.
Grandma’s dumplings remind me of home. Every time we visit her, she always sends my family home with boxes of dumplings that we steam and eat for the next morning’s breakfast. From a young age, I always wanted to help make them, but most of the time, she would make it before I got to her house. Little did I know, this was her plan all along because I made a huge mess and some ugly dumplings. Luckily, as I have gotten older and took a bigger interest in learning how to make them, my grandma waits and wants me to help her.
To make them, begin with making the filling so it can cool while you make the dough. Dice all of the ingredients for the filling into small pieces and keep all ingredients separate because you will be stir-frying ingredients in a specific order. It is easiest to put each ingredient into a food processor to mince into small pieces, but my grandma says it is better to dice everything up by hand. You can decide how ambitious you want to be.
Once everything is chopped, heat a wok with oil, and stir fry the ingredients. To the hot oil, add in the scallions, shrimps, sausage, ham, ground pork, sugar, add about 1/4 cup of water. Stir around and use the spatula to break down any large pieces of filling. Add salt, soy sauce, sesame oil, and black pepper to taste. Then, add the mushrooms, water chestnuts, mustard greens, pickled white radish, and kohlrabi. Add oyster sauce to taste and cornstarch. Cover for 5 minutes. Stir fry until everything is well combined and the taste is to your liking. Put into a bowl and set aside to cool.
To make the wrap, you will need a large pot with the cover. Pour the wheat starch and tapioca starch into the pot and mix well. Add oil and slowly start adding the boiling hot water while mixing. Once the flour is mostly absorbed, cover and let sit for 15 minutes, or until cool enough to touch with your hands. (Note: depending on the humidity of your kitchen, you may not need all the water at this stage, you can always add more water to reach the right consistency while kneading) Knead the dough until it all comes together and the dough is very smooth and not very tacky. The dough should not be too dry where it can’t stick to itself, and not too wet where it is sticking to your hands excessively.
Roll 1 Tablespoon balls of dough and press until 1/8-inch thick in a plastic wrap covered tortilla press. If you don’t have a tortilla press, use a rolling pin that is well covered in corn starch. You may also use corn starch on your hands to make working with the dough a bit easier. Crimp the circle of dough into a cup-like shape and fill with a spoonful of filling (see images below). Seal the top of the dumpling. Either place dumplings in containers or metal plates with oil to steam right away. If you are placing these dumplings in a container, they can be stacked on top of each other as long as they don’t get pressed down when you put the cover on.
It definitely has taken a lot of practice to learn how to make these dumplings without my grandma looking over my shoulder. Once you get more comfortable with the texture of the dough, you just have to perfect the crimping. This was especially difficult for me, but, I promise, it will come to you in time. Worse comes to worst, you can just put the filling in the middle of the circle and fold the dumpling in half and press the edges together. No matter the shape, they will still taste delicious!
When you are ready to steam the dumplings, set up a steamer. Once the water starts to boil, place the metal plate of dumplings (arranged as shown below) and steam for 15 minutes. These dumplings are delicious on their own, or you can dip them in soy sauce, oyster sauce, or even sriracha. Enjoy!
It would make my grandma and me so happy if you make her dumplings! We’d love to see your dumplings! Tag me in your pictures on Instagram @beyondbakingwithamandajane and use the hashtag #beyondbakingwithamandajane.
Grandma's Specialty Chinese Steamed Dumplings (Fun Gor 粉果)
- For the Filling:
- 4 Shiitake Mushrooms
- 70 g cooked ham
- 32 g pickled white radish
- 3 Chinese sausages
- 3 Water chestnuts
- 1lb Ground pork
- 60 g Dried shrimp
- 123 g Kohlrabi, cooked
- 63 g Scallions
- 12 g Mustard Greens
- 1/2 Tablespoon corn starch
- oil for stir frying
- Sugar to taste
- Salt to taste
- Soy sauce to taste
- Sesame oil to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- Oyster sauce to taste For the shell:
- 1 lb Wheat starch
- about 790 g hot water
- 87 g Tapioca starch
- 12 g Oil
- For the filling:
- Dice all ingredients into small pieces. Keep ingredients separate.
- Heat up wok and oil to stir fry the filling.
- Add scallions, shrimp, sausage, ham, pork, sugar, and 1/4c water. Stir.
- Season with salt, soy sauce, sesame oil, and black pepper to taste and mix.
- Stir in mushrooms, water chestnuts, mustard greens, pickled white radish, and kohlrabi.
- Mix in oyster sauce to taste and corn starch and cover for 5 minutes.
- Stir one last time and put in a bowl to cool. For the shell:
- Boil water.
- In a large pot, mix the wheat starch and tapioca starch together.
- Slowly add water to flour until most of the flour is hydrated, stir continuously (you may not need all of the water). Once the majority of the dry ingredients are absorbed, cover and let sit for 15 minutes, or until cool enough to touch.
- Add oil and knead dough until a smooth dough ball forms. You may have to add some more hot water to reach this consistency. Assembly:
- Roll dough into Tablespoon balls and press balls 1/8-inch thick in a taco press, or use a rolling pin sprinkled with corn starch.
- Crimp half of the circle to create a cup and fill with a spoonful of filling. Seal the top. (Note: you may need to coat hands in corn starch to prevent sticking)
- Store in an airtight container for up to a week, or steam for 15 minutes.