Chinese Dumplings, an Ultimate How-to Guide
Making Chinese dumplings can be easy and fun! Follow this recipe to learn how to prepare them from scratch.
Servings: 30 dumplings
For the wrappers
- 250 g all-purpose flour/plain flour about 2 cups (see note 1)
- 130 g water ½ cup+2 teaspoon (see note 2)
You also need
- neutral cooking oil If pan-frying
- 30 slices carrot if steaming
Make the dough
In a mixing bowl, add water to flour gradually. Mix with chopsticks/spatula until no more loose flour can be seen. Combine and knead into a dough.
Leave to rest (covered) for 10 minutes then knead again until smooth.
Cover and rest the dough again for 30-60 minutes until it becomes soft (Chinese cooks would say “as soft as an earlobe”).
If using a machine: You can also use a stand mixer with a dough hook to make the dough. Knead on low speed for 8 minutes or so until smooth. Cover and rest for 30-60 minutes.
Assemble the dumplings
Place a spoonful of filling on the wrapper. Seal the wrapper using the techniqe you're most comfortable with. Please refer to the tutorial video below or the methods demonstrated in "Ten Ways to Fold Dumplings".
Cooking option 1: Boiling
Bring a pot of water to a full boil over a high heat. Gently slide in the dumplings (cook in two batches if using a small pot). Push them around with the back of a spoon to avoid sticking. Cover with a lid.
When the water comes back to a full boil, add about 120 ml/0.5 cup of cold water then cover.
Repeat the procedure another two times. When fully cooked, the dumplings should be plump and floating on the surface.
Transfer the dumplings to a colander. Briefly rinse under tap water (make sure it’s drinkable water). Drain and serve immediately.
Cooking option 2: Pan-frying
Heat up a little oil over high heat. Place in dumplings (Gently move the pan back and forth to make sure each dumpling is in touch with the oil).
When the bottom part of the dumplings becomes golden brown, pour in cold water (enough to cover ⅓ of the dumplings). Cover with a lid (remain high heat).
Uncover when the water evaporates completely. Cook another 30 seconds or so to crisp up.
Cooking option 3: Steaming
Scatter carrot slices in the steamer baskets, then place dumplings on top (This is to avoid sticking. You may use parchment paper or coat the steamer with a little oil).
Bring the water to a full boil in a pot/wok, then place the baskets in (you may stack up 2-3 baskets and cook all at once). Cover with a lid then steam over medium heat for 10 minutes.
Freeze uncooked dumplings
Place assembled, uncooked dumplings on a tray lined with parchment paper (or dusted with flour). Put into the freezer.
Once completely frozen, transfer them into an airtight plastic bag/container. Use within three months.
1. If using a cup to measure, you'll need to sift the flour first then level it properly. Please be aware that measuring flour by cups is less accurate than measuring by weight so use a scale if possible.
2. The flour water ratio may vary depending on the brand of your flour, the humidity of your kitchen, etc. Adjust a little if necessary. The initial dough should be medium firm and it will become softer after resting.