I love to eat all sorts of pan fried dumplings and gyozas are no exception. I think it’s great that you can custom make it to any kinds you like. The first time I made gyozas was several years ago. That’s a long time ago I know but I’ll be first to admit that I really lack the skill when it comes to making food that needs technical folding like ‘bak chang’ or ‘paus’ or ‘siew mais’. But I wanted to at least be good at something of that requirement so I thought, why not start with gyozas. After watching some extensive videos on YouTube, I think I finally have it down pat….not as pretty or as fast as I’d like yet but off to a great start.
But fret not if you think folding and pleating is too hard to do, Daiso sells these moulds where you just clamp it shut together and you’ll have a gyoza. I haven’t had a chance to play with it yet but at least you know there’s a tool like this if you need help.
When I made these gyozas, I didn’t even bother to cook rice or anything. Just eat it like how you would dim sum. Because it’s homemade, the portion of filling is much more generous of course. An idea came to me while I was folding the gyozas, why not make like a gyoza wanton and just immerse it in miso? Miso soup goes with anything so it should jolly well go with pork dumplings.
Of course, there should also be the conventional yaki-gyozas or fried ones. I actually tried two methods when frying the gyozas and found the second method to have a better outcome than the first. The first method was to steam it half submerged in water first and then fry it in some oil so the bottom would be crispy. But then I tried a second method which is to fry it first, then steam and then dry-fry it to rid any remaining moisture; this method I feel, left a crispier and more appetizing singe on the skins of the gyozas compared to the first. (below)
After that, it was easy to just make a quick miso broth and cook the wantons. Hubster really like the soupy gyozas and they do tend to expand in the soup so you’ll only need like averagely 3 pieces per person. An hour’s work really made for two good meals that day. Though I’m not totally satisfied with how the frying look turned out but I will definitely revisit gyozas again and will do it better next time round.
200 gms ground pork
Chives (I used the Chinese Kuchai), chopped finely
2 shallots, minced finely
2 garlic cloves, grated
Thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated and use just the juice
1 teaspoon Sesame oil
2 tablespoon light Soy Sauce
1 teaspoon Shaoxing Rice Wine
2 teaspoons cornstarch
4-5 dried shitake mushrooms, rehydrated, stems removed, minced finely
Light soy sauce
1. Knead the ground pork in a bowl so they become gooey in texture. Add all the rest of the ingredients but hold the salt first. Cover with cling film and let it sit int he fridge for the flavours to infuse together, overnight or at least 3 hours.
2. Take them out an hour to come to room temp before you start wrapping them. Just before you start making your gyozas, add about two pinches of salt to the filling and knead to mix.
3. Get yourself ready. Take a wide tray and sprinkle on some flour so the gyozas won’t stick. Have a bowl of water ready on one side, your filling in the middle and your wrappers.
4. Fill your wrappers but leave at least 1.5cm on the sides. Don’t overfill in the middle. Wet the sides with water and fold it in half. Make pleats on only one side of the gyoza and squeeze out any air pockets. You might need to practise with a few before you get it right or get in the smooth, groove of folding. Make sure the gyozas has a base to ‘stand’ up.
5. Place the folded, pleated gyozas on the flour sprinkled tray and cover with the damp cloth to prevent it from drying out while you do the rest.
6. Repeat process till you have your preferred quantity of gyozas.
7. To cook the gyozas, use a flat frying pan that has a lid, if not then improvise the lid.
8. Heat some sunflower oil all over the pan. Arrange the gyozas in a row with the pleats sitting up and pan-fry till the bottoms are crispy golden. You can also choose to fry all sides of the gyozas.
9. Add water till it covers a quarter of the the gyozas. Put a lid on and let it steam for about 10 mins.
10. If you have some water left in the pan, just drain it away.
11. Dry-fry the gyozas again without any oil to get rid of the moisture and till the skin is dry and crispy again.
12. Eat with the dipping sauce.
For gyozas, refer to the recipe above
Miso paste that already has dashi in it
1. I had some filling left and a few gyoza wrappers so I thought I’d make a soupy version.
2. To wrap the gyozas, fill the centre with filling leaving more space on the sides, at least 2.5cm. Wet the sides and fold it to seal together, pinching out any air pockets.
3. Wet the two sharp corners of the wanton and pull the back gently to meet and seal together. They actually look more like tortellinis than wantons at this point.
4. Heat a pot of water, when it has come to a boil, add the wantons. They’re cooked when they expand and rise to the top.
5. Dissolve the miso paste into the soup. Adjust and taste to your liking. Add some pak choi, scallions and shichimi pepper.
6. Eat while it’s still hot!