Lamb Dumplings with Cucumber Vinegar Dipping Sauce

By • April 6, 2011 2 Comments

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Author Notes: This recipe uses lamb with Middle Eastern spices combined with wonton wrappers and a cucumber-rice vinegar dip, a mix of Middle Eastern/Mediterranean and Asian ingredients.

The steam-then-pan-fry method gets you the slightly chewy texture of steamed dumplings on the top and the satisfying crispiness of fried dumplings on the bottom. Moistening the dumplings with a little olive oil prior to steaming them helps keep them from sticking to a metal steamer basket. As for the steaming time, I wrote at least five minutes because my first batch came out too sticky. Unfortunately, I wasn't looking at the clock so I'm not sure what my final steaming time ended up being. I steamed the dumplings until the wrapper began to be translucent. If you make them shumai style as I did, the top won't become translucent because there are several layers of dough pinched together, making the top thicker than the sides or bottom. I tried a few different dipping sauces with these, but this simple cucumber vinegar with salt was my favorite. - clintonhillbilly

Food52 Review: The memory of these lovely lamb dumplings is still dancing in my head. Clintonhillbilly's recipe yields a perfect balance of chewy, crispy, savory, sweet, sour, vibrant, and fresh -- all together in fast, and easy-to-make little packages. The addition of small bits of fluffy potato lightens the texture of the filing, and the cucumber vinegar couldn't be a more spot on flavor match. I microplane-grated an English cucumber, with the skin on, which made a beautifully vibrant jade-colored sauce, steamed the dumplings for 6 minutes, and panfried for 2. Really wonderful. Please try. You will not be disappointed. - Jennifer AnnJennifer Ann

Serves 6

  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • .5 teaspoons coriander
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 potato, finely diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large cucumber
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • .5 teaspoons pepper
  • 1 bunch mint, chopped
  • 1 packet circular potsticker wrappers
  1. Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet as cook onion, garlic, and potato until nicely browned. Add 1 tsp cinnamon and 1/2 tsp cumin, stir to combine.
  2. Add onion, garlic and potato to ground lamb. Add remaining 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp cinnamon 1/2 tsp coriander, and 1/2 tsp each salt and pepper, and fresh mint. Mix with hands until well combined.
  3. In the center of each wrapper, place a tsp or less of filling. Draw wrapper up around filling and twist at the top to seal. Moisten fingers with water if necessary.
  4. Heat water in a saucepan with a steamer basket. Moisten hands with olive oil and place dumplings in basket, coating with olive oil from hands as you do so. Be careful not to crowd the basket as dumplings will stick together. Cover and steam for at least five minutes.
  5. In a heavy skillet, heat 1/2 inch oil until it begins to smoke. Remove dumplings from steamer basket and pan-fry until crispy and brown on the bottoms.
  6. Using a citrus zester or fine grater, grate peeled cucumber over a small bowl. Cucumber juice, along with a little pulp, is the desired result. Add salt and rice vinegar and stir to combine.
  7. Remove dumplings from skillet and drain on a paper towel. Serve with cucumber dipping sauce while still hot.

Tags: cinnamon, dips, dumplings, dumplings, ground lamb, lamb, Middle Eastern, party appetizer, potstickers, savory

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Comments (2) Questions (0)


about 4 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I love lamb with a vinegar dip, this sounds yummy!


over 4 years ago clintonhillbilly

Thanks so much Jennifer Ann, I'm so glad you liked them!