Last week D and I have declared Japanese Friday.
We spent Friday night drinking Asahi, Sapporo and sake and enjoying a delicious sushi platter from Sakana at Mooloolaba.
As a starter I thought I'd have a crack at making some gyoza. I trawled Pinterest for a recipe and came across one from Meal Planning 101 - not only does the recipe look easy, it's beautifully illustrated.
450gm pork mince
450gm bag of coleslaw (or cabbage finely shredded)
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated or minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 package of gyoza skins (also called Shanghai dumpling wrappers)
¼ cup water
1 tsp cornstarch
In a large mixing bowl mix together the pork, cabbage, ginger, garlic, sugar, soy sauce and sesame oil until well combined.
Meal Planning 101 has a beautiful series of photos demonstrating how to fold a gyoza complete with pleats - I suggest you check it out http://www.mealplanning101.com/2010/01/gyoza-japanese-potstickers.html.
Whether cooking these fresh or frozen, get out a large non-stick skillet that has a tight fitting lid. Place a couple teaspoons of oil in the pan and turn the heat up to high. Get a ½ cup of water ready and place on the counter beside you. Place the gyoza in the pan on the flat side with their pleats sticking up. Depending on the size of your pan you should be able to fit about 12 or so into the pan. After about a minute or two the bottoms of the gyoza will be browned and crispy. Grab the lid to the frying pan in one hand and the ½ cup of water in the other. Quickly pour the water into the pan and put the lid on. Turn the heat down to low and set a timer for 10 minutes. The dumplings will finish cooking in the pan by steaming.
After 10 minutes remove the lid of the pan. If not all the water is gone let them sit another minute or two to let the water evaporate and let the bottoms of the gyoza get crispy again. Remove to a serving dish. In the Japanese restaurant, they serve them with crispy side up.
Soy Sesame Dipping Sauce2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
Mix ingredients together in small bowl and serve with gyoza.
What I did (aka the bugger factor):
I couldn't find a bag of coleslaw that didn't have extras in it. So I finely sliced 450g of cabbage. Inexplicably there seemed to be at least a kilo of cabbage shards on the kitchen floor after this process. So if your knife skills are anything like mine, hunting down a bag of coleslaw sans additives might be well advised!
My local Woolies only had Gow Gee wrappers, so I used those. I only bought thirty wrappers, so I had stuffing left-over that I've frozen for another time. Thirty was a great number to share between four as a starter.
I slightly altered the cooking process - after the water had evaporated, I turned the heat off and left the dumplings in the pan (covered) for another ten minutes.
This lady is a genius! I've cooked lots of pot stickers before, but never with this much success. They came away from the pan easily and the flavours were spot on!
Dad said it took him back to his favourite izakaya in Nagoya. This recipe will become a staple in our house - the ingredients are simple and easy to get your hands on and the results are delicious!