Tag Archives: chinese food

Chicken and Ginger Dumplings


Chicken and Ginger Dumplings

Using flour to make dumplings followed noodles during the Han Dynasty (202 BC-220 CE) and by the 18th century dumplings were the rage in teahouses.

For the dumplings:
8 ounces ground chicken, shrimp or pork
2 tablespoons scallions, finely chopped
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons oyster sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
vegetable oil for pan-frying

1 package gyoza dumpling or thin won ton wrappers
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons water

For the dipping sauce:
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon sesame oil

In a small bowl combine the cornstarch and water. Set aside.

Prepare the dipping sauce. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and stir. Set aside.

Combine the ground meat, green onions, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, oyster sauce and sesame oil in a bowl. Place about 1 teaspoon of the filling in the center of each wrapper.Dip your finger into the cornstarch mixture and moisten the edges of the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over the filling and press the moistened edges to seal.

Place a large, nonstick skillet fitted with a lid over medium-high heat and add a few tablespoons of vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, place the dumplings in a single layer in the pan; they should be close together but not touching. Depending on the size of the skillet, you may need to cook the dumplings in a few batches. Cook, uncovered, until the bottoms are golden brown, about 2 minutes. Lower the heat to medium-low, carefully pour 1/4 cup water over the dumplings and immediately cover the pan with a lid and let the dumplings steam until the water has nearly evaporated and the dumplings have begun to fry in oil again, about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and serve golden side up with the dipping sauce.

Makes 2 dozen

Salt and Pepper Shrimp

salt and pepper shrimp

Salt and Pepper Shrimp

Though Sichuan peppercorns bear resemblance to black peppercorns – and have a similar kick – they are not of the pepper family, but the dried berry of a tree of the rue family native to the Szechuan province of China.

Prepared at a recent class at the San Antonio Museum of Art, his dish gets its kick from both peppers combined with the Mexican jalapeño or serrano chiles.

2 pounds shrimp
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon black pepper
1½ teaspoons salt, divided
¾ cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon ground Sichuan peppercorns
1 jalapeño or serrano chile, seeded and thinly sliced
½ cup fresh cilantro leaves with tender stems

Peel the shrimp and pat dry.

Whisk cornstarch, black pepper, pepper and ¾ teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add shrimp and toss to coat.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in 2 batches, fry shrimp until golden, crisp, and cooked through, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to paper towels and let drain, then toss in a medium bowl with the Sichuan peppercorn and the remaining salt. Add the sliced chile and cilantro to the bowl and toss to combine.

Serves 6

Cooking Art History: From Ancient Roots to Chinatown


Cooking Art History: From Ancient Roots to Chinatown

This blog was featured in The Huffington Post on February 25, 2016.

The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens has a fascinating and timely exhibit on display through March 21st, Y.C. Hong: Advocate for Chinese-American Inclusion. Curated by Li Wei Yang, the exhibit provides insight into the early history of the Chinese experience in California and embraces the importance of immigrants in American society. The focus is on Y.C. Hong, an immigration attorney and political activist, who, together with his wife, Mabel, was largely responsible for the creation of Los Angeles’s Chinatown.

Early images of Chinatown naturally got me thinking about Chinese food and its history…