Ingredients Jump to Instructions ↓

  1. Open-Face Steamed Dumplings (Shao Mai)

  2. 2/3 cup all-purpose flour

  3. 2 Tbsp hot water, plus

  4. 2 tsp hot water

  5. 5 oz regular or firm tofu, mashed

  6. 1 1/2 tsp Tientsin preserved cabbage, minced (packed)

  7. 1 Tbsp presoaked and minced tree ears

  8. 1 Tbsp presoaded and minced lily buds

  9. 3 Tbsp black or shiitake mushrooms, presoaked and minced

  10. 1 1/2 tsp green onion, minced

  11. 1 tsp sesame oil

  12. 1 tsp vegetable oil

  13. 1/8 tsp salt

  14. 2 tsp soy sauce

  15. 3 Tbsp water chestnuts, minced

  16. 3 Tbsp black mushrooms, minced, presoaked

  17. 3 Tbsp bamboo shoots, minced

  18. 3 Tbsp carrot, minced

  19. 2 tsp green onion, minced

  20. 1/2 tsp gingerroot, minced

  21. 1 Tbsp soy sauce

  22. 1/4 tsp cornstarch

  23. 1 1/2 tsp sesame oil

  24. To prepare wrappers, combine flour and hot water. Knead a couple

  25. of minutes into a smooth dough; cover and let rest at least 1 hour.

  26. Place on a lightly floured board, and knead for 2 minutes or so.

  27. With palms of your hands, roll it into a long, cylindrical shape,

  28. 7-1/2 inches long,

  29. 1 inch in diameter. Cut crosswise into 1/2-inch

  30. pieces; you will have 15. If your climate is dry, keep the dough

  31. covered. Shape these, cut-side up, into a round shape. Flatten them

  32. with the palm or heel of your hand on a flour-dusted board. With

  33. a pastry roller, small rolling pin, piece of dowel, or even an

  34. empty jar, all of these should be wielded under the palm of your

  35. hand, roll each into a round wrapper, 3-1/2 inches in diameter,

  36. thicker in the center, thinner toward the edge. This is easily

  37. done by rolling the pastry roller from the edge of the piece of

  38. dough to the center, and back again, turning the dough counterclockwise

  39. a little with your left hand after each roll. Continue all the

  40. way around several times, also turning the dough over once or twice,

  41. until you have a thin, 3-1/2 inch wrapper.

  42. Prepare Filling A or B by combining the ingredients. Place

  43. approximately 1 tablespoon filling on the center of each wrapper.

  44. Holding the wrapper on your left fingers, encircle it from below

  45. with your right thumb and index finger, gathering the wrapper up

  46. around the filling. Squeeze gently around the middle to make a

  47. kind of neck; some of the filling should emerge at the top. The

  48. bundle should hold together securely or it will collapse during

  49. steaming. Pat the bottom with your left hand to make a flat base.

  50. If the skin is not too floppy, you can also turn the edge slightly

  51. outward (like an open flower), pinching it if necessary to make it

  52. secure.

  53. Place a layer of damp cloth in a bamboo steaming basket or on a

  54. flat, perforated race (you can use a heatproof plate if you have

  55. neither of these, but circulation of steam is somewhat impaired

  56. this way). Arrange the shao mai on it. With the rack well above

  57. 10 minutes

  58. do not defrost first). They will stick to the cloth, but if you

  59. wash and reuse the same cloth each time, they will not stick as

  60. much.

  61. Serve while still hot, before the skin hardens, as is, or with

  62. small dipping saucers of soy sauce and mushroom liquid (from the

  63. black mushrooms), mixed in equal proportions. Add a few drops of

  64. sesame oil.


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