Crispy Bottom Dumplings
Dumplings are one of my favorite foods, and this marks our 7th dumpling recipe! Ok one of them is a pierogi, but who’s counting?
What makes this recipe so special is a pancake size, crispy crust on the bottom of the dumplings. Apple bottoms are soooo early 2000’s. Crispy bottoms is where it’s at! Anyway, I digress.
If you’ve ever had this in a restaurant, you know how delicious it is to pick off crispy pieces of savory crust before biting into a steaming hot, juicy, slightly greasy dumpling. It’s not hard to make, and looks super impressive. Try the crispy bottom dumplings with any of our fillings, or the beef, pork, Chinese chive, and tofu filling in this recipe.
80 dumplings | 1-2 hours prep time (grab a friend to help you fold!)
2 packages dumpling skins (around 80)
1 package chopped frozen spinach, thawed
1 cup finely chopped wood ear mushroom (see link on how to re-hydrate these)
1 bunch of finely chopped Chinese or Korean chives
2 scallions, finely chopped
2 tbsp minced garlic
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
1/2 lb ground pork
1/2 lb ground beef
1 package of soft tofu, broken down by hand
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground white pepper
Spicy dipping sauce:
Sambal chili sauce (optional)
Prepare filling: Squeeze out all excess water from thawed spinach. In a large bowl, combine spinach and remaining filling ingredients, and mix evenly. Cook a small spoonful of filling mix inn a frying pan, and taste for seasoning. Add more salt, soy sauce and sesame oil to taste, being careful not to over season the dumplings, since you’ll be dipping them in a savory sauce.
Fold dumplings: There are many YouTube tutorials on how to fold dumplings. It will take a few tries to get it right, but it’s not as hard as it looks!
Place each folded dumpling on a lightly floured baking sheet. This recipe makes a lot of dumplings. You can freeze them on the tray before putting them ziplock bags, so they don’t squish and stick together.
Cook dumplings: To get the crispy crust, we used a technique from one of our favorite blogs, Lady and Pups. Whisk together the ingredients for the crispy crust. Heat a pan over medium heat, and add canola oil to coat the pan. Sprinkle a thin, even layer of flour mixture onto the pan and arrange 5 to 7 dumplings on the pan. Add 3 to 4 tbsp of water, to about 0.5cm up the side of the pan, and cover. Cook until the bottom is golden and crispy, checking for doneness when the water has just evaporated, and the crust is golden brown.
Prepare dipping sauce: Combine the dipping sauce ingredients, with equal parts vinegar and ponzu, a sprinkle of chopped scallions, and a small splash of sesame oil. Add a dollop of sambal for a kick.
Written & photographed by Tracy Chow and Jen Yu.