Monday, May 07, 2007

Chives Dumplings

Flat leaved chinese chives, also called garlic chives are the main ingredient rather than an accent in these dumplings. The dumplings are always recognizable by the emerald hue of the filling. This dumpling skin is actually meant of Har Gow and i have attempted many times to make some good dumplings but have failed. So, since i have a patch of chives growing in the garden, i decided to use them as the filling. If this attempt failed, at least i did not waste the expensive shrimps. Surprisingly, this recipe turned out well. It was easy to make but a word of caution though, these dumplings will not keep, they have to be served as soon as they are ready and do not oversteam too.

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1 1/4 cups wheat starch/tung mein fun
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup boiling water
1 tsp vegetable oil


1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 lb chinese chives, cleaned, trimmed and cut in 1/2 inch lengths
4 ozs shrimp, peeled, deveined and cut in 1/4 inch dice(about 1/2 cup)
1/2 tsp soya sauce
1/8 tsp ground white pepper
1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp cornstarh



Combine wheat starch and tapioca flour and salt.

Add boiling water and the oil and stir with chopsticks or wooden spoon. While the dough is still very hot, turn it out onto a board dusted with 1 tbsp wheat starch.

Knead until smooth, adding a little more wheat starch if neceassary. The dough should be soft but not sticky.

Divide the dough into thirds. Use palm to roll each portion into a 9 inch cylinder. Cover loosely with a slightly damp paper towel to keep the dough from drying out. The dough is now ready to cut and press or roll out as needed.

To make round dumpling wrappers, wheat starch dough can be sandwiched between squares of baking parchment and then pressed flat using downward pressure (i use the pastry scraper). The result will be an almost-perfect circle. Afterward, if you still want your circles larger or a little thinner, roll them out lightly with a rolling pin before peeling away the parchment.

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Bring 2 quarts of water and 1 tsp of salt to a boil.

Add the chives and blanch for 1 minute over high heat.

Drain the chives in a colander, and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking.

Squeeze the chives dry.

Combine the chives with the remaining 1/2 tsp salt, the shrimp, soya sauce, white pepper, sesame oil and cornstarch.

Set aside.

To assemble:

Make one very narrow pleat that extends from the edge almost all the way to the center of the circle. Make 7 or 8 more narrow pleats alongside, each almost overlapping the last.(i can only manage to pleat 5). Your final pleat should be just over halfway around the circumference of the dough. Press a finger lightly along the inside of the pleats to flatten them slightly and enlarge the pocket within.

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Spoon about a teaspoon of the filling into the pocket, keeping it from touching the open edge of the dough. Pinch the edges of the dough together very firmly.

Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.

Arrange the finished dumplings 1/2 inch apart in an oiled pan. Steam on very high heat for 7 minutes, replenishing the steamer with hot boiling water as necessary between batches.

Brush cooked dumplings with cooked fragrant oil for shine and to prevent from drying out.

Let dumplings rest for a few minutes before transferring them to a serving plate.

Serve hot.



Kingy said...

Hi Lily! Tried making your chives dumplings to entertain some friends over the weekend, and they absolutely loved it! Thank you so much for the recipe and here's wishing you and your family a very happy and prosperous Chinese New Year which I am sure will be filled with lots of yummy food! Gong Xi Fa Cai! ;)

Rebecca said...

Hi Lily,

You can use raw chives, just cut into 1 cm and mix into the filling. It may taste and look better. I did this way. I know you are very humble and always welcome new idea or corretion. Happy cooking.
From, Rebecca

lilyng said...


thanks for the tip. will certainly try it this spring when the chives come back. Hope the raw chives will be easy to handle.

Anonymous said...

Hi Lily,

Just to share another method with you.I have seen my mom making this dumplings. What she does is to place the water and also the wheat starch + tapioca flour in a non stick pan and cook this until it forms a dough before adding the oil. Leave this to cool before shaping.

lilyng said...


thanks, what a good tip. the next time i make this, which will be soon cos i still have a huge patch of chives in the garden, i will certainly follow what your mom does. in fact, a new found friend taught me how to fold the dumplings in a different way.

luca said...

Hi Lily!
Love your website a lot! I tried making these today and they were yummy! except i used 1C wheat starch instead of 1 1/4 C because i ran out and they turned out nicely too but i had a problem where my dough got stuck to the cloth that i put it on while i was steaming so i ended up with some cooked dough stuck to the cloth which came off only after scraping it. I was wondering how you prevent this and how thin you rolled your dough out? Also, what does the wheat starch and the tapioca starch do? I've seen another recipe where they used 3/4 C wheat starch with 1/4 C tapioca starch.
Thank you Lily!!

lilyng said...


i steamed the dumplings on a greased cake pan or i would line the cake pan with nappa cabbage.

Janet said...

thanks for the recipe! It tasted great except the skin was a bit hard after it cooled. Do you have any suggestions on how to adjust to make it not so hard/chewy after it cools? Thanks!

lilyng said...


when cooking with flours of any kind, you would have to adjust the liquid used to get the correct consistency. a recipe is only a guide

to prevent the skin from drying out after steaming, it would be good to brush them with fragrant cooked oil. I am sorry i have omitted that and will amend my recipe.

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