The Center of Discovery
This special-occasion dish might be a little labor-intensive, but it’s well worth the effort. “They will be gone in minutes,” predicts Chef Parten.
Recipe excerpted from The Center for Discovery cookbook Feeding the Heart: Recipes, Flavors and the Seed to Belly Philosophy of the Department of Nourishment Arts.
Combine the cabbage and half the salt in a large bowl. Toss, then set aside for 30 minutes.
Transfer cabbage to a clean dish towel or doubled piece of cheesecloth. Gather the ends together and twist to squeeze out as much moisture as possible from the cabbage.
In a separate bowl, combine the wrung-dry cabbage with the pork, ginger, garlic, tamari, sesame oil, egg, and the remaining ½ tablespoon salt. Mix thoroughly.
Assembling the pot stickers:
Lay a few wrappers on your cutting board, covering the remainder with a damp dish towel so they do not dry out. Brush half the perimeter of each square with water, then place about ½ tablespoon of the filling in the center. Avoid getting filling on the edges of the wrappers—it will prevent them from sealing properly.
Fold each wrapper in half so the edges meet. Seal each dumpling by pressing the wrapper edges between your fingers. Position the dumpling with the seal pointing up (not lying on its side). Starting at the center, fold a small piece of the edge to form a pleat. Repeat, working toward the bottom right corner, so that each dumpling has two or three pleats. Then duplicate these steps, starting at the center and working toward the bottom left corner. Gently press the dumplings onto the work surface to flatten the bottoms. Continue filling and folding wrappers in this way until all the filling has been used.
Heat the oil or pork fat in a nonstick skillet over high heat. Swirl to coat the pan.
When the oil or fat begins to shimmer, add the pot stickers, flattened bottoms down. Turn the flame down to medium.
Cook, undisturbed, until lightly browned on the bottom, about 4 minutes. Watch carefully, as they can brown quickly.
Add about ½ cup of water and immediately cover to prevent the pot stickers from splitting. Steam until the dumplings are puffy yet firm and water has evaporated, 5 to 6 minutes. Check from time to time to make sure skillet has not boiled dry before pot stickers are done.
After water has evaporated, remove the lid and continue to cook over medium-high heat to recrisp the pot stickers on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a platter and serve with an Asian-style dipping sauce.