- Prep Time 15 minutes
- Cook Time 10 minutes
- Estimated Cost $15.50
- 15 Comments
I really hated the idea of Elana having to chew on gluten-free kale salad while the rest of us gorged ourselves on what is basically the most satisfying meal on the planet.
I originally created these for my friend Elana, when she and her husband Saul came over for an impromptu dumpling party last weekend. I had planned to make a huge batch of a kosher (turkey) version of Chinese Pork Dumplings, and I really hated the idea of Elana having to chew on gluten-free kale salad while the rest of us gorged ourselves on what is basically the most satisfying meal on the planet.
I also knew that messing around with xanthan gum was not the answer. A rice noodle seemed like the obvious choice. Plenty of dim sum restaurants serve rice noodle-wrapped dumplings, and I make Vietnamese Spring Rolls all the time. So I picked up some extra-large rice paper wrappers.
The wrappers for my dumplings needed to be sturdy enough to hold the filling, so the trick seemed to be thickening up the wrapper. As it turns out, this was easily achieved by stacking one wet wrapper on top of another. The superthin noodles fuse to each other, resulting in dumpling wrapper of the perfect thickness.
A quick pan-fry on one side and a very light steam in the same pan (too much steaming will cause the wrapper to fall apart) yielded a succulent dumpling in a silky wrapper with a pleasantly crisp bottom and just enough chew.
I served them with a half-and-half mixture of gluten-free tamari and rice vinegar, with hot sauce for the daring. They'd also be great in soup or over a bed of lightly-dressed greens.
- 6 large nappa cabbage leaves, very thinly sliced (or shredded) $2 for a head
- 1 teaspoon salt Pantry
- 1/2 lb ground pork or turkey (if you use turkey, add 1 egg yolk to make sure it stays moist enough) $2
- 4 minced green onions $1 for a bunch
- 1 handful fresh cilantro, minced $1 for a bunch
- 2 tbsp minced ginger $0.50 for a medium-sized piece of ginger
- 3 cloves garlic, minced Pantry
- 3 tablespoon (plus more for serving) gluten-free tamari (or soy sauce, if you can tolerate it), Pantry
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil, $3 for 12 oz.
- 1 tablespoons corn starch $2 for 14 oz.
- 2 teaspoons rice vinegar $2.50 for 14 oz.
- 1 tablespoon Asian chili paste optional
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper Pantry
- 6 large (12") rice paper wrappers $1.50 for a package
- 1-2 tablespoon vegetable or coconut oil, for frying Pantry
Recipe Serves 4-5
- 1. Spread the sliced or shredded cabbage over a cutting board. Sprinkle with the salt and gently toss together to distribute. Let sit for about 5 minutes. It should look like this.
- While the cabbage sits, put the pork (or turkey plus an egg yolk) into a large mixing bowl, along with the green onions, cilantro, ginger, garlic, tamari, sesame oil, corn starch (if using), rice vinegar and chili paste (if using).
- Gather as much of the cabbage as you can in your hands and wring out the liquid. Repeat with any remaining cabbage.
- Add the squeezed-out cabbage to the meat mixture.
- Mix well to combine the cabbage and the meat mixture together. Set aside.
- Run a rice paper wrapper under cool running water until the whole thing is wet. Gently shake off excess water and place the wet wrapper on a clean, dry surface.
- Immediately wet a second rice paper wrapper completely, shake off the excess water and place it directly on top of the first one, and press down to seal.
- Place a small bowl on top of the wrapper and use a paring knife to cut around it to make a dumpling wrapper.
- Place a dumpling round in your hand.
- Place about 2 teaspoons of the prepared meat-cabbage mixture on the wrapper.
- Gather the edges together, pressing to seal. It should look like a little purse.
- Repeat with the remaining rice wrappers and filling until all the dumplings have been made. Arrange them on parchment or wax paper.
- To cook the dumplings, heat the oil in a large frying pan (make sure it has a fitted lid and set it near the stove), over medium heat.
- Working in batches, arrange the dumplings close to one another (but not touching) in the pan) and cook on one side for 2-3 minutes.
- Sprinkle about 2 teaspoons of water over the dumplings.
- Cover and let steam for 2-3 minutes, until the meat is cooked through.
- Remove the lid and let the dumplings aerate until the excess water is cooked away, about 30 seconds.
- Transfer the cooked dumplings to a serving platter.
- Repeat with the remaining uncooked dumplings, then serve immediately.