So I have some very exciting news... next month I will be going to Hong Kong as part of Passion Passport and Cathay Pacific Airways' experience Passport To Asia. It's still sinking in but I cannot wait to learn, be inspired and (of course) share some beautiful photos with you!
To prepare for the upcoming Chinese New Year, I will be sharing five favourite recipes from my homeland. First up is a classic – boiled pork and prawn dumplings – which we traditionally eat at this time of year. I even made a little stop motion video to demonstrate:
500g strong bread flour
1 cup cold water
400g minced pork
200g peeled prawns, roughly chopped
1 tbsp Shaoxing cooking wine
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp ginger powder
1 spring onion
Light soy sauce
Add a cup of cold water to 500g strong bread flour (a little at a time) and knead for at least 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. The dough should no longer be sticky to the touch. Place into a bowl, cover with clingfilm and leave in a warm place for 30 minutes.
While the dough is proofing, make the filling. Mix together 400g minced pork shoulder, 200g roughly chopped prawns, 1 egg, Shaoxing wine, sesame oil, ginger powder and finely sliced spring onion. Roll out the dough into a sausage, then chop into ½ inch pieces. Squash each piece with your palm and use a rolling pin to flatten out until it's roughly 2cm thick. Add 1½ tsp of filling to the centre of each flattened disc. Fold the case into a half moon shape and pinch the edges together.
Carefully lower the dumplings into boiling water and simmer for 5 minutes. They will float when ready, but cut one open to check the pork is cooked all the way through. Serve with a dipping sauce of light soy sauce, chilli oil (my favourite brand is Lao Gan Ma which can be found in any Chinese supermarket) and dark vinegar.
The best way to enjoy dumplings is to host a party and have everyone making them together. Don't worry if they turn out misshapen like mine, it's all part of the fun and you can say you were going for a 'rustic' look.