Do you have those moments when you think you should know (how to do) something by default as a result of your ethnicity (or perhaps last name, family, affiliation, etc.)? And then you refuse to seek guidance because “it’s in you”. It’s like assuming that as an Asian I should know how to cook rice perfectly without any measuring tools or timer.

That’s exactly what was going on in my mind when I embarked on this Pot Sticker Adventure. I was pretty confident I could pull this off by channeling my inner 1/minisculeth Chinese. A book I’m reading says this is what artists are prone to do — Wing It. Did I ever wing it. I just wanted to use what we had in the kitchen, including kale.

I think I added shredded kale, chopped carrots, green onions, salt, pepper to the ground pork. I can’t remember. I wrote down the ingredients but I could not find that piece of paper anymore. [insert profanity]

Pot Stickers

I made the wrapper with equal parts boiling water and flour. [Please don’t ask me what got into my head.] The sealing/folding left something to be desired, but it still resembled what it should look like. Somewhat.

In the end, my first pot sticker experiment tasted REALLY good for something that’s based out of nothing. Dan and I were more surprised than anything. The wrapper was not so good, so I’ll stick to pre-made ones next time. Other than that…yummy!

The dipping sauce, if you’re curious, was a mixture of light soy sauce, white vinegar and smashed whole clove of garlic. It’s a Filipino dip that’s normally used for roasted pig but I tried it with the pot stickers to balance the saltiness. Dan loved it. :)

What have you experimented/concocted lately? Share your links if you blogged about them.

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  • June 11, 2008 4:45 am

    I am sorry to hear about your failed (is it considered failed even if it tasted yummy?) experiment. I have done the same mistake, thinking that just because I am Mexican I should know how to make every Mexican dish. Hehehe

    Bens last blog post..Cochinita Pibil

  • Stephanie/Chocolate Stew
    June 11, 2008 6:31 am

    I LOVE kale! I cannot seem to find anyone else in my family that will eat it, but I love it and have managed to find quite a few good recipes for it. It’s funny that you posted this blog because I made postickers on Monday and was planning to post my blog about it today :) I also had somewhat of a failure my first time around. My boyfriend is Chinese and was not home when I tried my first batch. I ended up just boiling them to make dumplings…that actually worked.

  • June 11, 2008 8:12 am

    oh yum! what do you use for premade wrappers? do you use wonton wrappers? i’m always disappointed when i do, because i like a thicker dumpling skin.

    my biggest experiment lately was fresh pasta from scratch! http://www.sugarlaws.com/whole-wheat-pasta/

    katys last blog post..Rhubarb Jam

  • June 11, 2008 9:00 am

    Wow, that’s very brave of you! I would never dream of making my own wrappers unless it was an experiment, and even then I would always consult a recipe! Glad to see it all worked out!
    PS I prefer calamansi to white vinegar, when it comes to the soy sauce dips, heh heh :)

    Manggys last blog post..Strawberry Shortcake

  • June 11, 2008 12:14 pm

    Oh my gosh, those look fantastic! I’m so impressed that you made and rolled out your own dough, too! I made pot stickers once and while they were delicious, they were a lot of work.

    Elles last blog post..It’s Wednesday! Do you know what that means?

  • June 11, 2008 6:43 pm

    These look fantastic! I love dumplings of all kinds:) In Azerbaijan we make Gyurza filled with meat which reminds potsticks a little. Yum!

  • joy
    June 11, 2008 11:25 pm

    Ben – LOL. I hear ya.

    Stephanie — Believe it or not, it’s the first time we bought/ate it. We love it! Hey, great minds think alike. ;-) What wrappers did you use? I’m always worried they would open up during cooking.

    Katy — I’ve never made them with pre-made ones yet, but I’m thinking to use the circular wonton wrappers. The funny thing is, I ended up with thick wrappers and I was shooting for thin ones. Haha. Your whole wheat pasta experiment turned out amazing. I’ve always felt ‘incapable’ of making homemade pasta because we don’t have a machine. But I think I’ll make them without one. You’ve inspired me.

    Manggy — I’m crazy like that. Hah. I LOVE calamansi, too, but it’s almost impossible to find them here.

    Elle — Thank you, dear. I was feeling stupidly brave that night. Hehe. They’re a lot of work that it makes me feel grateful for pre-made pot stickers.

    Farida — Thanks girl. :) Gyurza sounds like Gyoza — I love how they’re all related somehow. :)

  • June 12, 2008 3:46 am

    Hey! I made those Gyoza weeks ago from scratch too.
    It’s best made with Hot Water and a little Cold water. You’ll get really nice skin without being too chewy. And of course freshly made skin is simply delicious!

    From what my mum learnt from our Chinese domestic helper, Chinese cabbage and ginger are added to the minced pork. For the extra spiciness and juiciness of the cabbages all in a mouthful.

    When you seal the skin, make sure you leave a tiny hole. That’s because to make a really tasty Gyoza, you need to pan fried it on one side till crispy.. then cook it in stock for a few minutes.

    Have fun! Enjoy!

    Sherxrs last blog post..Restaurant gooblegubble

  • June 12, 2008 3:24 pm

    Aren’t potstickers wonderful? We make a similar dipping sauce, but don’t bother with the garlic. And yes, always buy the wrappers–it’s so much easier.

  • joy
    June 13, 2008 12:01 am

    Sherxr — That’s awesome. Do you mix it with hot water first, then cold water? And in what proportion? I know about the Chinese cabbage, but didn’t know they put ginger in it. And I didn’t know about leaving a hole. Or pan frying and cooking in stock. I’m so grateful for all this info. Thank you!

    Terry B — Oh yes yes. Love it. I like the li’l garlic kick sometimes. :) What wrapper do you use?

  • June 13, 2008 10:28 am

    Very nice Joy! I’m impressed. And the filling looks uber delicious.

    Hillarys last blog post..Successful Weight Loss with Weight Watchers

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