pork pot stickers

pork pot sticker

I have always vowed that I wouldn’t be that mother that served dinner like a diner.  For the most part, I have upheld that vow.  My kids have always been pretty good about trying different things and we are lucky they eat what I serve.  That is probably attributed to the fact that they have learned that if they don’t like it, they get the ‘too bad’ face, and the ‘better luck next time!’ shrug (insert emoticon here).  Now I am not completely insensitive to their ever-changing preferences or aversions, but I don’t cater to just their favorites either.  If I did, I’d be eating orzo and hot dogs everyday.  Right now, my daughter seems to be anti-red sauce so she is getting zero sympathy from me in that department.  One dish we all can agree on though, is pot stickers.  Maybe because it is similar to ravioli or tortellini which the kiddies love.  My problem is that I need to be sure I don’t eat 30 of the tiny pockets of yumminess.  If you check out the original recipe, it calls for only 8 ounces of pork, whereas I used twice that.  I have issue with using parts of packages, or 1/2 of a can of something, so I tend to modify recipes to try to use things in their entirety.   This does produce mass amounts of food sometimes, but in most cases, it equals another dish the next day, or a frozen mixture for round two down the road.  I would rather refrigerate or freeze a meal, or the mixture for a meal, than have a leftover can of corn or  frozen blob of pork.
I was only feeding three of us this time, so I only made 18 pot stickers and kept the pork mixture and used it in a cold noodle salad for four of us the following day for lunch.  It also would work on a salad with an orange vinaigrette.  Leftovers are heaven.  Otherwise this would make 36-40 pot stickers.

napa cabbagescallions

pork pot stickers (basically from Cooking Light)

Cooking spray
1  lb. package of lean ground pork
1/2  cup green onions, chopped
1  jalapeño, minced
2  tsp. ginger, grated
2  TB low sodium soy sauce
2  tsp. sesame oil
1/2  head Napa cabbage, shredded
3  carrots, shredded or Julienne
peanut oil

pork and scallions

get started on the pot stickers:

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Coat pan with cooking spray.  Add pork and cook 6 minutes or until almost done, stirring to break up into tiny pieces.  Add green onions, jalapeño and ginger and stir to combine.  Add soy sauce and sesame oil cooking for another minute.  Stir in carrots and cook for a minute, then add the cabbage and cook until cabbage just wilts.  Remove from heat and cool slightly.

pork mixturedumpling assembly

Place a small bowl of water near where you will be assembling the pot stickers.  Lay out six wonton wrappers, keeping the remaining under a damp paper towel (so they don’t dry out).  Spoon a teaspoon of the pork mixture into the center of the wonton.  Moisten the edges around the mixture with water, using your finger or a brush.  Take opposite corners of the wrapper and fold and seal and then fold up the remaining corners and pinch to seal at the top.  If any edges aren’t sealed completely, dab with water and pinch closed.

wontonsraw dumplings

Heat peanut oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Arrange six pot stickers in the pan in a single layer.  Cook two minutes or until browned on the bottom.  Add 1 cup of water to the pan and cover and cook 4-5 minutes.  Uncover, and cook until liquid evaporates, about 2 minutes.  Meanwhile, assemble the next six pot stickers.  Serve immediately with soy sauce or your choice of dipping sauce. (jacked up with jalapeños!)

pot stickers cookingpot stickers

note:  serving portion is 3 pot stickers at about 120 calories total.  (so obviously eating 30 is not recommended!)  Depending on how many pot stickers you want and can fit into your pan, realize that you need to cover your batches to keep warm and moist, as it is 7+ minutes until the next batch is ready.  YUM!

plate of dumplings

shiitake pot stickers

shiitake pot stickers

I’m very blonde.  I am not talking about L’Oreal Preference shade 92 natural blonde (much to the dismay of my hairdresser, that box does get purchased from time to time – and used – usually when I am bored).  I am speaking about the fact that I will oftentimes neglect to purchase the main ingredient of a meal or something that is at the least, integral, to a dish.  These were supposed to be pork pot stickers, but I came home with everything but the pork.  I can’t tell you the amount of times I pay at the cashier and as I’m wheeling out of the store, realize I didn’t buy the fish for the tacos, or for that matter the tacos.  So I am THAT woman, with a cart full of bagged groceries, heading back to get what I forgot, worrying that people think I’m shoplifting tilapia.  My husband just shakes his head when I tell him.  I could even have the list with me, and if I don’t write it in the way I shop the aisles, you can kiss something on the list good-bye.  We have just learned to live with the occasional menu change or the task of going through the cashier line twice.  I was really looking forward to making these because it is something the kids like too, so I had to improvise – no going back to the store.  Not too hard to do with a dumpling actually, so I was in the clear….this time.
I have made a variety of dumplings and if you are sitting there, folding up 30+ little guys, the last thing you want to see is them coming unsealed in the pan.  Make sure you don’t skimp on the water and that you seal the edges well.  I decided to try the gyoza skins because they are round, and found that they were easier to fold up and crimp than the square wonton wrappers.  These came out perfectly, and tasted great even without the fatty pork.  I did make the mistake of storing extra pot stickers in a glass container without considering the fact that they would stick to one another and make one giant dumpling.  So with the mini victories come the defeats.  I dealt with it and moved on.

shiitake pot stickers (sans the pork)

Peanut oil
8  oz shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
8  oz white button mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
4  TB low-sodium soy sauce, divided
2  tsp sesame oil, divided
1/3  cup green onions
2  garlic cloves, minced
1  2 inch piece of ginger, minced
1  jalapeño, seeded and minced
1  10 oz pkg. cabbage slaw mix
30  gyoza skins

dipping sauce:

4  TB water
4  TB soy sauce
4  TB rice vinegar
1  tsp dark sesame oil
2  garlic cloves, minced

jalapeño ginger scallions

get started on the pot stickers:

Heat a large non-stick pan over medium-high heat.  Add a tablespoon of peanut oil.  Add in the two kinds of mushrooms and cook until mushrooms are softened, about 4 minutes.  Add 2 TB of the soy sauce and 1 tsp of the sesame oil, cook for 30 seconds.  Add onions, garlic, ginger and jalapeño and cook for another 2 minutes until flavors combine.  Stir in coleslaw and cook for 2 minutes until cabbage wilts, stirring frequently.  Taste mixture and add in remaining soy sauce and sesame oil if needed.  Remove from heat and cool slightly.  While mixture cools, combine ingredients for the dipping sauce, stirring well with a whisk.

mushroom mixtureassembly line

Working with one gyoza skin at a time (cover remaining with a damp towel to prevent drying), lay out 8-10 skins on your board.  Spoon 1 TB mushroom mixture in the center of each skin.  Moisten edges of the skins with water.  Fold in half, pinching and edges to seal.  Heat peanut oil in the same large non-stick pan over medium heat.  Arrange pot stickers in the pan in a single layer.  Cook 2 minutes or until browned on the bottom (or a side).  Add one cup of water to the pan and cover.  Continue to cook the pot stickers another 4 minutes.  Uncover and cook until liquid evaporates, about 2 minutes.  Place dumplings on a plate and cover to keep moist and warm.  Continue making the remaining dumplings.  Serve these immediately with dipping sauce…..and hot chili sauce of course!

pot stickers waitingcooking the pot stickers