Author Notes: My twist on the dim-sum classic and the secret to making the transparent glass wrapper. It’s been on top of my how-to list, and after several failures, I have finally cracked the codes – it’s potato-starch that will give you that level of translucency! These dumplings are as pretty as they are delicious. More photos on: http://www.ladyandpups.com/2013/09/09/insights-to-your-shrimp-dumplings-eng/ —Mandy @ Lady and pups
Glass wrapper dough
grams of potato starch + more for adjusting and dusting
grams of tapioca flour/starch
teaspoons (8 grams) of sugar
teaspoon of salt
milliliters (100 grams) of boiling water
tablespoons (15 grams) of vegetable oil
milliliters (30 grams) of cold water
Shrimp and spinach filling
ounces (115 grams) of fatty ground pork
ounces (35 grams, or 2 large) peeled tiger shrimps
cup (80 grams) of chopped spinach after squeezed dry
ounces (110 grams, or 6 large) peeled tiger shrimps
teaspoon sesame oil
teaspoon of ground white peppper
- NOTE: www.bobsredmill.com makes both potato starch and tapioca starch. Despite the mystery, the wrapper-doughs is very easy to make, but has NO ELASTICITY to work with, meaning they DO NOT STRETCH at all. That makes it less forgiving when it comes to wrapping but after the first couple of trials, you should get the hang of it. I understand how wary some people are towards cooking in grams, but this is really where you want to start. These are conversions I grabbed from the internet which may or MAY NOT BE 100% accurate, but enough to give you a reference for a rough idea of quantities. But please, DO NOT rely on them completely. Do the grams: 119 grams of water = 1/2 cup. 160 grams of cornstarch (which weights similarly to potato starch) = 1 1/4 cup. ***I recommend using shelled/deveined tiger shrimps in frozen bulks available in wholesales like Cosco, or big supermarkets. They have a very distinctive “crunch” or “snap” to their meat, and when sold frozen, are almost always guaranteed to be fresh and affordable.
- MAKE THE DOUGH: Set a large bowl on a digital scale, and weight/whisk together potato starch, tapioca flour, sugar and salt. Bring a pot of water to boil, then pour it into the bowl until you have 100 grams of boiling water incorporated. Stir the mixture using chopsticks into a lumpy, dry and floury dough. Cover with plastic wrap until it’s cooled enough to handle, then add the vegetable oil and 30 grams of cold water. Knead the dough with your hands until perfectly smooth for a couple of minute. The dough should be slightly sticky and will probably stick to your hands when you’re kneading it, but not impossible to work with. Add a bit more potato starch if too wet, or little more water if too dry. Cover the the dough with plastic wrap until needed.
- MAKE THE FILLING: Place fatty ground pork, 35 grams (2 large) of tiger shrimps in the food processor and puree into a sticky paste. Then add the chopped cooked spinach, 110 grams (6 large) tiger shrimps, salt, sesame oil and ground white pepper, and pulse until the shrimps are chopped into large pieces. Transfer to a bowl, cover and chill in the fridge until needed.
- TO WRAP AND STEAM:Lightly dust the working surface with potato starch/cornstarch (depends on which you’re using). Take a piece of dough, about 1 1/2 tbsp, and roll it lightly in potato starch/cornstarch so it doesn’t stick. Roll it out into a circle about the size/thickness of normal dumpling wrappers. Place about 1 tbsp of filling in the middle and close the wrapper up with three pointy corners (or whatever shape you find easy to work with). Make sure to pinch the seams tightly together. Repeat until your are done with all the fillings (you may have more dough left). The process could significantly speed up if you’ve got a 2-people assembly-line set up. You can steam them immediately, or wrap them individually and freeze for up to 1 week. Bring 2 cups of water to boil in a large wok, or the bottom-pot of a steamer. Brush oil over the bamboos on the steamer surface where you’re placing the dumplings (to prevent sticking, or even better if you have one of those steamer-fabric specific for this purpose, or a sheet of cabbage works fine, too). Place the dumplings into the steamer and place it over the hot water. Cover and steam on high heat for 5 ~ 6 minutes. The glass wrapper would seem more opaque when it’s hot, and turn more translucent once cooled down slightly. The best condiment to serve with is, yellow mustard and sriracha sauce.