Cantonese Steamed Dumplings with Pork and Shrimp (Shao-mais)
Cantonese Steamed Dumplings with Pork and Shrimp
Chinese Dim Sum
- Dim Sum - History, Pictures, Recipes of Chinese Dim Sum
Dim Sum - Learn about the history of this Chinese custom, see pictures of dim sum food and try recipes.
Cantonese Steamed Dumplings with Pork and Shrimp (Shao-mais)
In Hong Kong and throughout southern China you will find numerous teahouses that serve Dim Sum in the morning and sometimes into the early afternoon.
Dim sum consists of a variety of dumplings, small pastries and cakes that are brought around to the tables where diners can select as many as they want. They are usually served on small plates and each diner is charged by the number of empty plates on their table when they are ready to leave.
One of the most popular dim sum items is shao-mais – small steamed dumplings filled with pork, shrimp or other tasty things. This recipe calls for pork, shrimp and Chinese dried mushrooms steamed in wonton skins.
Although you can make the skins at home, most Chinese prefer to buy them frozen. Commercial wonton skins are usually about 3 ½ inches square and thinner than egg roll skins. You can make them somewhat round by cutting off all four corners.
These dumplings need to be steamed before serving. If you have a wok with a set of steaming baskets, this will be very simple for you to do. Since I don’t use a wok and I normally don’t steam food very much, I simply use a large covered kettle with a colander that will fit inside.
The cooking instructions give you more details. If you are using them as hors d’oeuvres, You can make these dumplings in advance and refrigerate them until you are ready to steam them.
Ingredients for Filling:
8 Oz. of Ground Pork
8 Oz. Fresh Shrimp (clean and cut into peanut sized pieces)
4 Chinese Dried Mushrooms (Soak in hot water, remove the stems and mince.
½ Teaspoon Sugar
½ Teaspoon Salt
1 Tablespoon Thin Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Dry White Wine
2 Teaspoons Sesame Seed Oil
24 Round Wonton Skins (or cut square ones into circles)
- Allow the wonton skins to thaw out and come to room temperature covered so they won’t dry out.
- If the skins are square, cut a small triangle off of each corner to give them the shape of octagons. Re-freeze the corners in a plastic bag and later you can fry them in oil, salt them and serve them as snacks.
- Combine all of the ingredients except the skins in a large bowl and refrigerate for 30 minutes before use
- Working with one skin at a time, hold it in the palm of your hand and place a walnut sized amount of the mixture in the center.
- Gently squeeze the skin around the mixture and gather the sides with your other hand to form a series of pleats while leaving the center open. (refer to the pictures to see how each dumpling should look).
- Then press down on each dumpling on a flat surface so that it will stand by itself, If you are having difficulty doing this, your wonton skins are either too cold or too dry.
- You should prepare all of them in advance and refrigerate them for about 20 minutes before steaming.
- If you have a wok with a steamer, steam them for 15 minutes over boiling water.
- I don’t steam things very often so I simply place a colander in a large kettle with boiling water in it, insert eight dumplings at a time, cover with a lid and steam them in batches.
- You can keep them warm in a covered pan in a 150 F oven until you finish all of the batches. Serve hot with soy-sesame dip.
Soy- Sesame Dip:
Mix ½ cup of Black Soy Sauce with 2 Tablespoons of Sesame Seed Oil and serve in one bowl or small dishes for each person.
How to make Shao Mais
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