Everytime I go to a yum cha restaurant, I always order har gao (shrimp dumplings), shao mai (open-faced shrimp/pork dumpling), prawn chee cheong fun (steamed rice rolls) and pan-fried potstickers, just to name a few. My favourite dumpling of all time is har gao - I just cannot resist its translucent, slightly chewy skin of goodness, and of course it's also because I adore prawns...
I had tried making har gao before, but I failed, because the skin turned out hard and non-transparent and the prawn filling unsatisfyingly tasteless - this is the result of following a bad recipe. Since then I had always dreaded trying to make har gao skin. But I've finally got over my shock after I bought a dim sum cooking book, called Dim Sum Made Easy by Lucille Liang. The book is small with nice dim sum pictures and easy-to-follow instructions. Not the most complete dim sum recipe book, but enough for pushing me to try making har gao again, because the recipe sounds reliable and authentic.
But..., I also just bought a pot of chives a few days ago, waiting for its long fresh leaves to be cut and used for delicious cooking - so I thought, why not adding chives to my har gao and make prawn and chives dumplings instead, they would also taste as good, wouldn't they? Well, just as the post title has stated, my mindgame finally resulted in yummy har gao plus chives.
I was very happy with how the skin turned out, it's just the right chewiness and it's translucent too...! The filling also tasted good, but making the dumplings really required caution and skill (something that I lack, but managed to overcome). The skin might tear easily, so you really need to roll the dough to the right thickness, not too thick, but also not too thin. In addition, the filling must NOT be wet, or the skin would tear. I also learned not to be too greedy and put in less filling, because the more filling, the easier it's for the skin to tear.
- 1 1/2 cups wheat starch
- 1/2 cup tapioca starch
- 1 1/2 cups hot water
- 2 tbs oil
Always the same technique (look at my Guo Tie post) - Combine all the ingredients for the dough and knead until smooth and pliable. Roll into a sausage-like shape and cut into into equal pieces. Roll each dough-piece into a ball and flatten it with a rolling pin.
Fill in the skin with the prawn mixture. It's very hard to get fresh prawns here. I only can get them frozen.
- 500 gr prawns, chopped
- 250 gr chives, chopped
- 1 egg white
- 2 tbs chopped pork fat (optional, if you don't want to feel guilty after eating this delicacy)
- 1 tbs scallions, finely chopped (white part only)
- 1.5 tbs oyster sauce
- t tbs Shao Xing wine
- 1 tbs tapioca starch
- Dash of salt and pepper