Pork Potstickers (with Homemade Wonton Dough)

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Makes about 40 potstickers

I’ve never been a huge football fan, but both of my parents sure are. Super Bowl Sunday has always meant getting together with friends, making bets, screaming at the television, and, my personal favorite, an excessive arrangement of All-American finger foods. This year, as I was sifting through some recipe ideas, for some reason the challenge of making homemade wonton wrappers really drew me in.

I used a combination of different recipes I found and adjusted them for what I had in my pantry and what I like, and you can most definitely do the same. Replace the pork with chicken, or beef, or lamb, or veggies, change the spices, the sauce, whatever suits you. And, of course, you can use the store-bought wrappers instead of making your own dough; I’d recommend using the store-bought kind honestly–they’re exactly the same and it’ll save you a good hour. I just wanted to give it a try and see if I could do it.

Ingredients:
For the potstickers:
~1/2 pound ground pork
~1/4 cup finely chopped scallions
~2 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper
~1 egg, lightly beaten
~2 teaspoons ketchup
~1 teaspoon yellow mustard
~2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
~1 teaspoon light brown sugar
~1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
~1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
~35 to 40 small wonton wrappers (unless making your own dough).
~Water, for sealing wontons
~3 to 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, for frying
~1 1/3 cups chicken stock, divided
For the wrapper dough:
~2.5 cups flour, plus a lot extra for kneading
~1 cup boiling water
For the sauce:
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

For the dough: In a large bowl, mix together the flour and hot water with a spoon until the dough forms a ball and has cooled down enough to knead by hand. Turn out dough onto a floured surface and knead by hand until completely smooth, adding flour as needed to reduce stickiness, about 7-10 minutes. Cut the dough into halves and form each half into a doughnut about an inch in width. Cover with plastic wrap or a towel and let rest for 20 minutes while you make the filling.

Once ready, cut each doughnut in half to form 2 strands of dough each. Cut each strand into 8 pieces, making 32 chunks of dough, each the size of about half a thumb (kind of an odd form of measurement but that’s all I can think of). To form dough wrappers, flour a surface generously. Press down a single chunk of dough with your palm to make a circle, then flatten out with a floured rolling pin to make a thin circle (trust your judgement). I’m not very good at making circles; when I rolled out my chunks of dough they always ended up looking like deformed pentagons. So, I used a cup to cut out even circles (you could also use a cookie cutter if you’re fancy like that). While forming each wrapper, cover the other chunks of dough and formed wrappers with a damp cloth to keep them from drying out.

For the filling: Combine pork, scallions, red pepper, egg, ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, black pepper, and cayenne pepper in a large mixing bowl and combine thoroughly.

To make the potstickers, place about half a teaspoon to a teaspoon of filling into the center of each wrapper. Dip your fingertip into some water and run it around the edges of the wrapper; this will be your glue. Fold the wrapper over to enclose the filling and push out any air bubbles. Then, to make them pretty, fold the edges over to make the pattern thing. I have no idea how to describe it, so just look at my pictures. All you’re doing is pinching the edges together every centimeter or two. Cover filled potstickers with damp cloth as you fill the others. If you want, you can freeze the prepared dumplings after this step and then cook them later: they’ll last virtually forever.

To cook the potstickers, heat a large saucepan over medium heat and preheat the oven to 200 F. Add some canola oil when hot and place 8-10 potstickers in the pan at once. COok for 2 minutes and DON’T TOUCH THEM OR MOVE THEM. After 2 minutes, add 1/3 cup of chicken stock to the pan, cover, and cook for another 2 minutes. Once done, use tongs to take the potstickers out of the pan and onto a baking sheet and place the baking sheet into the oven to keep them warm as you cook the others in batches of 8-10. Clean the pan between batches by deglazing it with water, pouring out the water, and drying the pan so that it’s clean and ready for the next batch.

To make the sauce, combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and adjust seasonings based on your liking. Chop up some extra green onions to sprinkle over your potstickers, serve with sauce, and GET READY TO WATCH SOME FOOTBALL.

Happy dining!!

 

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