Chinese New Year -- or Spring Festival, as it’s literally translated -- means fireworks, parades, and brightly colored costumes. But food is the real star of the show, none more so than jiaozi, traditional crescent or parcel-shaped dumplings. Signifying good luck and financial prosperity, jiaozi can be made savory or sweet and eaten with any meal. With just a few simple ingredients and a bit of patience, you too can “enter the dragon” anytime of the year right in your own kitchen.
We have 10 dumpling varieties for you to try. Make one at a time or have a feast of dumplings; make a few different flavors and let people pick their favorites.
First, pick your preferred preparation:
For pan-fried dumplings: In a large pan over high heat, add 2 tablespoons Spectrum Naturals® Canola Oil. Working in batches, add dumplings and fry, without turning, until golden brown on the bottom, about 2 minutes. Add 1/2 C warm water to the pan (careful, it will splatter!). Cook, partially covered, until the water evaporates, about 5 minutes. Transfer dumplings to a paper-towel lined plate before serving.
For steamed dumplings: In a large pot over medium heat, add 1/2 inch of water and bring to a simmer. Using a bamboo or metal steamer, spray surface with Spectrum Naturals Organic Olive Oil Non-Stick Cooking Spray. Add dumplings, making sure they don’t touch, and fit steamer over pot. Cover and steam for 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and serve immediately.
For boiled dumplings: Bring a large pot of water to boil over medium-high heat. Add dumplings in batches, making sure they don’t touch. Cook over a gentle boil for 3 to 10 minutes, depending on filling. Transfer to a serving platter with a slotted spoon.
Now that you’ve got the basics, make a batch of basic whole wheat dumpling dough and get cooking!