Sunday, July 31, 2011

Pot Stickers, Noodles and Sauce, Oh My!

Nothing tastes as good as home cooking like your mom used to make.  Unfortunately, Veronica isn't getting those delicious homemade memories of her foster mother's cooking.  So, I tried to recreate some of the fabulous food we had in China.

I took on potstickers.  And making supper took over two hours.  And it was so worth it.  They were awesome!  I also improvised a noodle dish with bean sprouts, cilantro, ginger, etc. that I think replicates some of the flavors we had in China pretty well.

Although the pot stickers prompted Ben to declare that he now loves me even more than he thought possible (Hooray for that ego boost) the best part was seeing Veronica's joy.  She has always been a good eater, but her enthusiasm was huge today. She was a giant blur of excited, chopstick-waving waving hands

**Please ignore the bleeding head wound.   Concrete is very hard and rough. 

Even though I can't pull out her foster mom's secret stash of family recipes, I am hoping that some familiar flavors will help her feel connected to the woman who loved her so much for so long.  I'm also hoping that my attempts at replicating Chinese food will linger with her and build the happy memories that only Mom's home cooking can.

Pot Sticker Recipe
I modified a recipe I found.  Here's what I did:


•    1 1/2 pound ground pork (not sausage) cooked, crumbled and 
•    1/2 small head cabbage, finely shredded
•    3 green onion including green part, finely chopped
•    1/2 Tbs ground ginger
•    1 can water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped
•    2 teaspoons salt
•    1 teaspoon white sugar
•    2 teaspoons sesame oil
•    2 packages wonton wrappers
•    vegetable oil for frying
•    1 cup chicken broth for cooking

1.  Mix pork, cabbage, green onion, ginger, water chestnuts, salt, sugar and sesame oil.

2.  On each wrapper (keep them covered with a damp paper towel so they do no dry out) place about 2 tsp of the mix and seal the edges, use a bit of water on the edge, try to press out all the air and ensure they are tightly sealed (At this point you can freeze them individually on a cookie sheet and them place in a plastic bag. They will keep for a month. Defrost in fridge before continuing).

3.  In 2 large skillets heat 2 Tbs oil, fry 8 dumplings in each pan (don't crowd them) for 1 minute or until golden on one side. Add 1/4 cup of stock into the pan, reduce heat to low, cover and cook, without turning for about 7 minutes or until the dumpling is translucent and most of the liquid has evaporated Uncover and on medium heat cook for another 5 minutes.  Drain put on a platter and keep warm.  I put them in a 150 degree oven.

4.  Repeat for the remaining dumplings.

Note:  These are called pot stickers for a reason.  You'll need to use a bit of scraping to get them off the bottom of the pan.  I did NOT use teflon pans.


Football and Fried Rice said...

Oh, mama! I think *I* fell in love with you a little more today too :-)

And the look on Veronica's face? Worth every minute of those two hours!!

Kristin said...

Now that I have the hang of it, I think it will take a lot less time next time.

just me said...

Veronica's face says it all!! Hope everyone else like the food as much as she did.