This is the same recipe I have been using since we lived in Taiwan in the 1980s, and have never felt the need to change or tweak the ingredients. Back in the day, I used to make the wrappers from scratch as well (and will include a recipe at the bottom of this page), but these days I always use purchased Gyoza/Potsticker wrappers from the refrigerated section at the grocer. Have fun and get an assembly-line going with your family. As long as you are going to the trouble of making your own delicious dumplings – make a double or triple batch. Freeze on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for two hours, then transfer the frozen dumplings to a zip-top plastic bag. Remove from the freezer about an hour before cooking, or just add a minute or two to the cooking time if using straight from the freezer. The dumplings can be served plain (please don’t), with soy sauce, or with a traditional dipping sauce (recipe below).
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
2 green onions, finely chopped (plus more for garnish, optional)
1 pound ground chicken (or turkey, or pork)
36-40 round dumpling wrappers, such as Dynasty brand
2 Tablespoons vegetable or peanut oil for frying
Water for steaming
Put the soy sauce and cornstarch in a medium bowl. Whisk until smooth. Whisk-in the egg, then add the sesame oil, grated ginger and chopped green onion. Add the ground meat and mix until well combined.
Place a small bowl of water near your work surface and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Lay one wrapper on the work surface and place about one tablespoon of filling in the center of the round. Dip your finger into the bowl of water and moisten the top half of the edge of the circle.
Fold the wrapper in half, pinching the moistened edges together to form a tight seal. Set the dumpling down so it stands up – you will need a flat bottom when cooking the potstickers.
Make a fold at the top center of the potsticker. Pinch hard to firmly seal, then make two more folds down the right side, and two more folds down the left side… or in which ever order you choose. Place the stuffed dumplings – standing up on the parchment lined baking sheet. Continue making dumplings…
Five folds will seal the deal. You can go all fancy and make as many pretty folds as you want (Google potsticker or dumpling folding techniques, and prepare to watch hours of amazing videos), but five works just fine. They do not need to be perfect. Practice will improve your technique, but unless you work at Din Tai Fung, don’t worry about precision. Worry instead that you have moistened the rim of the wrapper enough your dumplings will not split open while cooking. The only hints I can give is to not over-fill, have no air pockets, and don’t allow meat filling to get caught-up inside the folds.
In a manner of minutes, your tray will look like this:
They are not perfect, but when the dumplings are fried, then steamed, they puff-up quite a bit and the perfections are well hidden. No one will notice any irregularities when they eat the delicious potstickers. Trust me. Your guests will be too impressed that you made potstickers to count folds.
TO COOK A DOZEN POTSTICKERS: Heat a large flat-bottomed skillet (one that has a tight-fitting lid) over medium-high heat and coat the bottom with about two tablespoons of vegetable or peanut oil (I use peanut oil). Carefully place the potstickers, flat-bottom-side down, into the skillet. Do not crowd. Lower the heat to medium and allow the dumplings to get nicely browned on the bottom – about three-to-four minutes, uncovered. They will stick a bit to the bottom of the skillet – they aren’t called potstickers for nothing – but leave them undisturbed. CAREFULLY pour 1/3 cup water into the skillet and IMMEDIATELY cover with the lid. Reduce heat to medium-low and let the dumplings steam as they finish cooking for another three or four minutes. Remove to a platter and serve. Garnish with additional sliced green onion, if desired.
DIPPING SAUCE – Stir together and serve with potstickers:
1/3 cup soy sauce
1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon sherry
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon chili oil (optional)
1 Tablespoon thinly sliced green onion
WRAPPER RECIPE – Makes 40 wrappers:
3 cups all purpose flour
1 cup water
Mix flour and water in a medium bowl, and knead to a soft dough, about five minutes. Cover with a damp paper towel and leave to rest for 30 minutes. Divide dough in half and roll each half into a long sausage-shape and cut into 20 pieces. Repeat with the second half of the dough. Roll each piece into a thin 4-inch circle on a lightly floured board with a dry rolling pin. Fill and cook as described above.