This is a dim sum favourite for many of us! Originally a Chinese dish, these yummy little dumplings have become a solid part of the Thai food culture for a long time, and when we make them, we add our own Thai flare to them (yes, there are chilies involved!). A lot easier to make than you might think, and they can also be made in advance, refrigerate or freeze, and then steamed whenever you're ready to serve!
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- 3 cloves garlic
- ½ tsp white peppercorns
- 200 g shrimp (if thawed from frozen, make sure you dry them really well with paper towel. Excess moisture will make your mix too runny to wrap)
- 150 g ground pork (use regular ground pork, not lean, for more tender dumplings )
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp fish sauce
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- 1 egg
- ½ cup finely diced jicama
- 1 green onion, chopped
- 24-30 pc wonton wrappers, preferably round and thin, but square ones are ok too
- Diced carrots for garnish
- 7 cloves garlic, chopped
- Vegetable oil, as needed
- 2 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp black soy sauce or dark soy sauce
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2 Tbsp vinegar
- Thai chilies, chopped to taste
For the fried garlic and garlic oil:
- Add garlic to a small pot or wok and add just enough oil to almost cover the garlic.
- Turn heat on medium, and once garlic is bubbling, reduce heat to low just to maintain gentle bubbling.
- Fry for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, or until garlic is golden. Don't fry too long or it will become bitter.
- Drain garlic from oil, keeping them separated so the garlic is crispy.
For the dipping sauce:
- Combine all ingredients and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
For the dumplings:
- In a mortar and pestle, grind garlic and white peppercorns into a paste.
- Take 50 g of shrimp and dice the meat into little chunks; set aside.
- Put the remaining 150 g of shrimp in a food processor and grind just until there are no more big chunks.
- Transfer shrimp into a mixing bowl and add ground pork, garlic mixture, soy sauce, fish sauce, sugar, sesame oil, cornstarch, and egg.
- Knead everything together with your hands (use gloves if you've got them) until the mixture is smooth, thick and no longer runny (it should be able to hold its shape). The mixture will start out quite runny, but will thicken as you knead it.
- Add diced jicama, green onions, and diced shrimp meat; mix just until combined. You can cook off a little bit of the filling in a skillet or the microwave at this point if you want to taste and adjust the seasoning.
- If your wonton wrappers are square, trim off the corners so they look like chubby octagons.
- Put about 1 Tbsp of filling in the centre of each wrapper and close it up into a cylinder by squeezing it in your hand (see video for technique), flatten out the bottom and the top with your fingers. This is by no means the best way to wrap, it's just what works best for me, so feel free to experiment with other wrapping techniques that might feel more comfortable for you.
- Garnish the top of each dumpling with 3 small cubes of carrots and push them in slightly to secure them (optional step).
- Bring water in the steamer to a boil. Line the steamer with parchment paper or banana leaves, making sure not to cover all the holes so steam can still come up. Alternatively oil the steamer racks so they dumplings don't stick. Steam for 10 minutes.
- When they're done, brush the tops with garlic oil, sprinkle with crispy garlic, and serve immediately with dipping sauce.