Shumai and Pork Dumplings

Thogg loved these! He thought they were just perfect and the addition of the black mushrooms gives them excellent texture. You can use shitake if you like a stronger flavor. I personally find that shitakes are the ONLY mushrooms I don’t love, but *shrug* it is more traditional in this dish. You can wrap them like traditional shu-mai if you like, or be lazy and just do a simple stuff and close like I did below. You get more meat per wrapper doing them like above, but they’re a bit more of a pain to do correctly.

Similarly to the chicken dumplings, you can whip up a simple dipping sauce using soy sauce, a little water, a little sugar and then add any of the following: grated ginger, chopped chives or green onion, hot pepper, a lemon twist, etc. You can try adding or subbing other ingredients to the dumplings too. Try some thinly sliced bamboo shoots or a little bit of chopped chives.

Ingredients:

  • Shu-mai wrappers (about 20-30)
  • 1 dried black woodear mushroom – reconstituted with boiling water for 20+ min
  • 6 oz shelled and de-veined medium sized shrimp
  • 1 lb pork butt, neck, or shoulder
  • 1.5-2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp chicken bullion powder (low sodium)
  • 1 tsp chinese wine or sherry
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1 Tbs egg white
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar

For Bouncy Shrimp (Optional):

  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 Tbs egg white
  • 1/2 tsp corn starch (or tapioca if you have it)
  • 1 cup ice cubes

Directions:

  • This step is optional, do it the night before if you have time. If you would like to make your shrimp more “bouncy” the way you may have had it in chinese restaurants this is the trick. Take your shelled and de-veined shrimp. Rub it with the baking soda and put it in a bowl. Pour in enough cold water to submerge it. Add the ice and set it aside for 30 minutes. Put it in a colander to drain and rinse with cold running water. Pat it dry with a paper towel. Add the egg white and corn starch and leave it for at least 6 hours or over night. It will firm up and become dense and have a snap when eaten.
  • Trim the pork of any huge pieces of visible fat. You want to keep some, so don’t go crazy with that knife. Cut it into small pieces and then pulse it in the food processor until it is ground. Drain your black mushrooms and cut it into thin match-stich pieces. Place the ground pork into a large bowl and add all the other ingredients, minus the wrappers, and mix thoroughly. Pull off a piece, put it on a plate, and microwave on high for 30 seconds or until fully cooked. Add salt, pepper, soy sauce or anything else to your taste preference. Once you are satisfied, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Wet your finger in some water and moisten the outer 1/2 inch of the wrapper. Fill the wrappers with about 1 heaping tsp and seal. If you want to make shu-mai shaped dumplings use more filling and pinch pieces of the wrapper to seal around the filling leaving the top open. You can place a single green pea at the top if you like for a pretty garnish. You can also use a snip of chive, a piece of green onion or any other garnish you wish to use.
  • If made into shu-mai shapes steaming is the preferred method. Steam on a parchment lined bamboo steamer (covered) for 6-7 minutes. If you have made sealed dumplings you can use them as wontons in soup or boil them and serve them that way. In boiling broth or water they only take about 3 minutes to cook.
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